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Topwater Sportfishing on the Great Barrier Reef

It’s always great when you see good people connect in business and life… Our good mate Tam Missen recently bought himself a game boat (awesome) to be based up in Cairns, Australia on the Great Barrier Reef.  The rig is a 36 foot Black Watch known as Black Ops (cool name) is skippered by Jason Legg, former Nomad Sportfishing guide who has been doing his own thing for a few years guiding up and down the Barrier Reef and Coral Sea out of a few different vessels and is a seriously accomplished guy.  The whole operation goes by the name Topwater Sportfishing Charters.  The boat is about two main things; the heavy tackle Cairns black marlin season and the topwater casting and jigging game the rest of the time, a perfect combo in our eyes!

The boat based out of the Cairns marina will also be spending some time further south at Hervey Bay, doing some runs down to Fraser Island to target baby blacks, big blue marlin and the famously large GT’s at Breaksea Spit, we can’t wait for that!

Andy and I got a chance to fish with the boys in January 2020 along with Phil who had been the high bidder in an auction raising funds for the bushfire victims, good man he is!  Tait Missen a serious up and comer was also on board, watch this kid, has serious credentials already….

It was a pleasure to step onto Black Ops, the centrepiece of the Topwater Sportfishing Charters operation for a few days on the reef.  It was a mixed bag of jigging, topwater and some billfish trolling all laid out and it was a ton of fun and comfort.  Black Ops is a versatile boat, just at home mixing it with the big boys in heavy tackle season as it is edging onto the reef gutters, Jason is a skilled skipper and the boat is agile.

Some game boats are a chore or actually dangerous to cast from, with bow rails, life rafts and deck fittings being in the wrong place and height.  Thankfully Black Ops is literally ‘just right’ with two anglers comfortable on the bow while one or two can work the back deck with most things in just the right place.  There is nothing like the versatility of being able to go from your bunk to the casting position in a matter of minutes to start your fishing day (via a fresh coffee of course), it makes the whole process a lot more affordable also.

Topwater Sportfishing has a website under construction (we will update it here when complete) and Facebook and Instagram pages – they also have a Facebook Group for anyone looking to establish a shared charter (great idea).  Click the highlighted fields to go directly there.

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