My First Trip to Barwon Banks

Our trip to Barwon Banks via Noosa Bar:

The morning began in our little donger in Tewantin AKA Noosa Caravan Park. With the alarm set for 4.00am, the beer drinking had to be limited to maybe six.. or so. The weather was quite cold, and so the layers were donned, I made coffee and packed lunches, even though it’s probably only me eating.

We got to the boat ramp around 5 am, and several other boats were getting ready to leave, everyone was taking their time because the sun was not up yet. (I don’t think to cross the Noosa bar at low tide and no light is a good idea.) However, having some local knowledge and leaving as a group always helps to make the trip safer.

As we neared the end of the river, one boat had found a sand bar during the night, and two very keen fellas were in the drink, pushing the boat into deeper water. (I imagine 20degrees water temp would not be nice at that time of the morning!) Just glad it was not us.

The 0.4m low tide meant that we could see the sand bars, making it somewhat easier to choose the spot to slip through. The waves were coming in fairly close, which is usually a pain in the ass in our tinnie, but on Sunday they appeared to be less than a metre.

Once over the surf, every boat took off in different directions, and it seemed we were the only ones headed to Barwon Banks. The trip on a good day takes around 1.15 or 1.5 hours, but Sunday it was the chop that slowed us down. Hence it was 1 hour and 50 minutes before we reached our spot. No land in sight, which to me was scary and beautiful at the same time.

There were around six boats there before us and as the day went along, plenty more turned up. The variety of fish was unbelievable. We stayed until all the bait was gone (squid only) which was about 2.30 in the afternoon, unfortunately, however, the sea wanted to keep us there I think because the anchor got stuck, and we were forced to donate it to the reef.

The trip back was much easier because the chop had calmed down. Two dolphins swam beside us for about 5 miles; it was an excellent company. We saw whales, ships..lovely to get away, but it was a big weekend!


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