Top of the Tide fishing for Barramundi on Spring Tides in tidal creeks and barrages can land massive metre-plus barra, but requires local knowledge and skills.
Barra Fisherman Nathan Litjens has extensive experience chasing barramundi in the tropical, tidal waters of the Northern Territory. In these three articles he explains how to make the most of these unique conditions along the NT coastal rivers.
"TOT, to Darwin dwellers might bring up images of things other than fishing, but to the switched-on Barra angler, the Top of the Tide or TOT for short can be a time of rich fishing opportunities."
Top of the Tide Barramundi
So, what do I mean by Top of the Tide (TOT)? For the newcomers, it's the time at the peak of the tide when it has finished creeping in, and is just about to turn and fall again. It's a time of slack water, and if you've picked the right tides and places lots of big, boofing Barra feeding on baitfish soup.
Here I will focus on three types of locality that are different in many ways, but are remarkably similar to fish.
The first is the humble Coastal Creek. At the end of the Wet Season, the coastal floodplains are drained by small mangrove-lined creeks that empty directly into the sea. Around Shady Camp, the most famous are Swim, Carmor and Marsh Creeks.
Mudflats become feeding grounds
at the Top of the Tide.
The second area we will focus on are the vast areas of salt flats and dead timber such as those higher up in the Shady Camp system, especially those that drain into Tommycut Creek. These are typically dead flat, muddy, salty areas that have a coating of saltwater couch grass and dead trees. They are drained by many small creeks that are like a maze to navigate. At a glance I would say these places look almost post-apocalyptic.
The third are the barrages, such as those so well known to those that fish Shady Camp.
Good Barra are caught at TOT
Despite appearances, very large captures of fish happen in these areas on the correct tides.
So what makes a good tide? Typically you want the big tides, normally the biggest Spring tides in the cycle.
As seen on the front page of NT&NQ Fish & Bait Magazine in Jan 2011
2016 Barra Run Off dates now available
(Feb to April 2016) Don't miss this exciting time on the Barramundi Fishing Calendar as the massive run off of the wet season floods provides exceptional fishing.
BARRA TO SAILFISH BLUEWATER PELAGICS SAFARIS NOW AT A REDUCED RATE OF $625 PER PERSON PER DAY!!!
5 DAY MOTHERSHIP
BARRA to SAILFISH & PELAGICS BLUEWATER FISHING SAFARI anchored @ Daly River Mouth
Anth & Dani's Big Trip "What an amazing trip, we had tried all types of fishing from rivers, deep channels, poppers, bait fishing, trolling and lure fishing. We were amazed at the variety of fish and beauty of the place. Special thanks to Allan and Heather for their hospitality, we highly recommend Darwin's Barra Base if you are coming to the Territory"
Call us to arrange a gift that will be remembered for a lifetime. More details here.
FreeCall 1800 777 420
Negotiate your groups dates & bookings Click here for full contact details
Channel 10 BucketList
Darwins Barra Base
Mark Berg Fishing TV Show was filmed with Darwins Barra Base over a 3 Day Safari 23-25 June 2010 for Foxtel's Lifestyle Channel viewed across Australia.Call now on
Increased Limit of 3 Barra per person per day for the Mary River, including Shady Camp, has been announced.
Booking seats now will avoid missing a place on a 2015 Barra Run Off Safari with Darwins Barra Base. Now four great purpose built boats allow more people to experience the fantastic barramundi fishing available during the February to May Barra Run Off season in the Northern Territory. Read more...