Top Ten Australia Off-the-Beaten-Path Adventures

Fish for Barra
By Ron Moon & Viv Moon

The barra's strike is like a missile shot from a hidden sub. Silver and gold threads along its glistening body glint in the sunlight, then the big fish tumbles back into the log-strewn waters of the river. In the quiet that follows, only the slight hum of the drag as line is peeled from the reel and the torque of the rod gives any indication that the fish is far from tired; the battle has simply shifted to the depths. Fight a barramundi and you'll see it blast out of the water time and again, head thrashing to and fro as it tries to throw your triple-hooked Nilsmaster lure, water cascading off its back, and finally plummeting down into the water again.

Barramundi are Australia's premier sports fish—a world-class jumper that behaves a lot like American bass. You can catch barra in Queensland and Western Australia, but the Northern Territory, with its far-sighted fisheries management, is far and away the leading area for recreational barra fishing; anglers from all over are coming here to cruise the territory's rivers, creeks, waterholes, dams, and close in-shore waters for prey that grows to more than 80 pounds. Sometimes, when the fishing is hot, you can bag 20 or even 30 good-size fish (between 10 and 20 pounds) in a day. If you crave sport-fishing action, that's as close as heaven gets on this earth!


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