The 18th annual Apex East Kimberley Marine Barra Bash (aka the Kununurra Barra Bash) competition was held in September and again proved to be a great success for the local community. Run by the local Apex club, the event’s popularity recognises the importance of Barramundi fishing to the town of Kununurra and its community.
It was based at the Skull Rock Boat Ramp on 23/24 September and although the fishing was challenging on a couple of warm days, that didn’t stop everyone involved having a great time. Numbers were up this year, with 116 competitors, of which 34 were juniors.
There were several prize categories this year, including the new biggest barra section, which proved very popular. It was taken about by Paul Stewart, who got the best fish of the weekend at 76cm. There were 34 barramundi weighed in altogether, although a lot of smaller fish were released.
The major prize was for a fish closest to a mystery size and it was taken out by Brent Rocklift, who won a rooftop tinnie and motor package worth $5000 to cap his weekend. Most people camped on the banks of the Ord near the boat ramp where a couple of flat-screen TVs and a satellite dish were very popular for watching the AFL finals. The Sunday weigh-in was well attended to cap another excellent weekend of fishing and socialising.
The Kununurra Apex club will again be running the event in 2017 as the town continues to emerge as a premier destination for Barramundi fishers from across the country. The restocking project in Lake Kununurra is shaping as a major success and there have already been some very meritorious captures by canny locals. Metre-plus fish should start to appear more regularly in the coming months, and the attraction of a world-class impoundment fishery for Barramundi in the Kimberley should prove a major tourism drawcard for the region.
(Photo courtesy of Matty Cox)
Soon Kununurra will be able to provide both great impoundment and wild river fishing opportunities for visitors to the town, a unique combination sure to appeal to many anglers.
(Photos of competition courtesy of ABC Kimberley)