Nan reels in monster barra
THE exuberance of youth has proven no match for a grandmother's intuition when it comes to barramundi fishing.
Tolga woman Val Haigh scored the longest fish of any female contestant in the weekend's Tinaroo Barra Bash with a 109cm monster caught on a puny 6kg mono line with no tracer.
Her son, mad keen fisherman Cameron Haigh, said he was only too happy to get bested by his mum.
"I thought I was showing her how to do it, but she ended up showing me," he laughed.
Mrs Haigh said it was her first time in the competition and the only barra she has ever caught on Lake Tinaroo.
She wasn't even targeting the famous sport fish - her sights were set on sooty grunter, hence the weak line.
"It was cold, wet and windy," she said.
"We had been fishing for a while and only got a few snags.
"I thought we were going to run out of time, then I went to pull in the line and off it raced.
"This huge barra jumped clean out of the water."
Mrs Haigh had a 15-minute battle on her hands, her backside planted firmly in the mud to stop her slipping over.
"Finally it got to the bank and it was so exciting - the adrenaline was pumping," she said.
"And it was nice to see that fish swim away so someone else can catch it again.
"That's what is so lovely about the catch and release."
Event organiser Ann Leighton said hundreds of contestants made the trip to Tinaroo.
"It went off really well - we're grateful to all the sponsors and the community for their support," she said.
"Despite the dreadful conditions, the diehard fishermen persevered and reported some great catches."
It was also a chance to trial the new Tinaroo Barra Bash app, which allows fishers to record their catches on a live feed so all contestants know what they are up against.
"Despite a few glitches, it seemed to work well," Ms Leighton said.
"We're happy to have any feedback on it."
Tinaroo Barra Bash 2018 results
Adult nominations - sold 282
Junior nominations - sold 112
Small fry nominations - sold 30
Adult lucky nomination - $10,000 - Michael Trimble, Tolga
Junior lucky nomination (7-15) - fishing package - Kade Taylor, Mareeba
Junior lucky nomination (six and under) - fishing package - Jake Porta, Bayview Heights
Tilapia - junior most caught (four caught in total)
Atherton B&Tackle, Shane Knuth MP - Kaycee Smallwood, Miallo - 2
Mitchell River Watershed Management Group - Kale Taylor - 1
Mitchell River Watershed Management Group - Mathew Walker, Atherton - 1
Forktail catfish (113 caught in total)
1st place - Ashton Rosenfeldt, Mareeba - 29
Under 6 Entries
Girls encouragement award - Alexa Haigh, Tolga
Boys encouragement award - Logan Batle-Gould, Woree - 50.5cm for his first-ever barra
Encouragement awards - Jacob Giblin and Lucy Porta, Cairns, and Zoey Wharton and Degan Bucknell, Yungaburra
1st place junior - Jhye Field - 30cm
Sooty Grunter (36 caught in total, measuring up to a combined 13.36m)
Mystery prize - John Walker - 28cm
1st place junior - Cameron Browning - 47.5cm
1st place senior Neil Lee Long Trophy - Ben Tunsted - 49cm
Barramundi (64 caught in total, measuring up to a combined 57.31m)
Jill Piggott Memorial Trophy Encouragement Award - Troy Taylor, Wondecla - 105cm
Mystery length award - John Atzeni - 87cm
Richard Welham memorial Trophy for 1st junior boy - Ashley Holm, Tarzali - 121cm
2nd place junior boy - Troy Taylor, Wondecla - 105cm
1st place junior girl - Charlotte Moller, Gordonvale - 104cm
1st place women - Val Haigh, Tolga - 109.5cm
1st place men - Jarvis Evers - 130cm
Champion angler - Ben Tunsted Atherton - 12 fish measuring up to a combined 9.63m
2nd place champion angler - Daniel Goodhew - nine fish measuring up to a combined 6.27m