Friday, December 3, 2010

Home Valley Station

After Tans Birthday breakfast we headed off to Home Valley. Its only 30 km up the road so we took our time getting to camp. The only major obstacle was the crossing of the Pentacost River. As we arrived as another vehicle was just about to cross so we did the right thing & let them go first... The water was only about 300mm deep so not an issue. In the wet the river is impassable with the water going above the causeway markers. After a few photos and a bit of a scope of the potential fishing spots off we went to the homestead & camp for the night. 

Tonight's options of camp was at the home stead camp ground or  4km away at the camp ground on the banks of the Pentacost river... with this as your view it wasn't a hard choice

Back at the homestead we had a pool, bar & restaurant to keep us amused for  the afternoon

At camp we met 2 guys Tony & Phil who were doing a day trip from Kununurra. The boys are local tilers working 6 days a week trying to catch up with the building boom that's occurring in the north. They had planned on doing some fishing that evening down stream from the crossing and invited us along for the ride. Phil spent an hour coaching me on how to use a throw net to catch live bait. The grass onside the pool area was the location. We kept some European tourist amused while I tried to catch leaves with the net. Phil was VERY patient with me & after some time I had the basics sorted. Plenty of practice still required before we could catch a feed but it would be a very valuable skill that I had learnt and put to good use in the days to come

Bugger... Good to practice on but the grass doesn't have any snags. I  used a window squeegee to reach out & try & untangle it from the snag.

It was only ankle deep  and it was OK to wade out to untangle it Phil assured me but saltys live here so bugger that... 

The storms started to build. What a show

As i didn't catch any bait from my pathetic attempts with the cast net Phil & Tony kindly let us use some live bait that they had caught. The fishing spot was called the killing tree. Turned out some crazed tourist decided to shoot a group of campers on the banks of the river because he could ..... This all occurred some 20 years ago.  He went on a killing rampage & ended up being captured some 1000km away near Wolf Creek.

Once the sun had gone Tony & Phil departed company & headed back to Kununurra. Troy & myself were left by ourselves on the riverbank with an awesome light & sound show off in the distance. There was plenty of activity in the water with a small shark taking a flying leap at some bait fish & got airborne some 2 ft in the air. When it got really dark then things got scary. Even more commotion in the water with something leaving the water & heading our way up the bank... Were outa here....... We headed back up the track & to the crossing once again. This time the HID's lit up the surrounds & you could see all the croc's eyes lit up in the distance on the opposite bank on the crossing. One curious croc even was game enough to head towards the car rather than away from it & ended up only a couple of feet away from the drivers side door. After Troys attempt to get eaten by the ones in Darwin I wasn't that keen to wind down my window for a photo & see if it would do the same.

Back at camp we stopped in at the home stead for a quiet beer & a chat to the locals. The fella on the far right Grant had his last night at the station before him & his wife headed back on a 3 month road trip to Sheparton. The green shirt was one of the girls staff uniforms that was kindly donated to him as  a farewell gift. Out came the black marker pen & it was on for young & old.  He was considerate enough not to write on our clothes & save it for our arms or any other exposed skin that he could find to write on. 

something about being the best Barra fisherman he had ever met I'm sure
We were all having a ball with only the staff & Troy & myself at the bar when some interesting characters arrived.

Pentacost at high tide on advice from the locals earlier in the night.  When we arrived back at camp the tide was just starting to slacken before heading back out again. I casted in a mullet & a few seconds later had a massive run on something substantial but it bit off  and the show was all over as quick as it had begun. By the time I had rigged back up the tide was rushing back out again and you would cast out only to be dragged up the bank after bout 20 seconds. By this time it was midnight so off to bed as we had a big day ahead of us tomorrow. 

Camp the next morning.. ah the serenity....

This was secret spot 346. A salty suns himself on the bank waiting for the tide & the fish to come in again.  The tides here are about 10 meter rise & fall the biggest tidal movements in the southern hemisphere . last night I was casting in near the bushes in the foreground with schools of mullet swimming about at the bank near my feet. I'm glad I didn't throw out the cast net with my mate waiting for me out the back. Yet again we had an awesome time on the Gibb.  The locals indicated a few months before the place was chaos with fights over camp spots & up to 150 people at the restaurant with a queue 4 to 5 people deep at the bar waiting to be served. Bugger that for a joke. I liked it just the way we had it so far with the place to our selves just the locals a few European tourists in the mix.

No comments:

Post a Comment