Jonathan Chen takes out Bemm River round one of the Hobie Bream Series
Team Member Jonathan Chen started his tournament season off on a high note taking out the Bemm River event under tough conditions. Read below to see how he did it.
"Bemm River round one of the Hobie Bream Series.
Left Canberra Thursday after work and headed to Bemm River with Ben Davidson in order to get ther and go for a prefish on Friday morning.
Decided to launch at around 9:30am. Prefish identified that it was going to be hard finding those bigger fish and I wasn’t finding as many active fish as I would have liked. I decided to do a big loop of the lake having a look at new areas and see if previous spots had fish on them. I didn’t find many fish on the edges and found more fish in the 4-6ft. After prefish I had a plan to go to the mouth of the Bemm River and fish the flats. It has always been an area that I have been able to find fish. Still had no clue what lures to use as I caught fish on everything from blades, plastics and hardbodies.
I headed straight to my marks near the mouth of Bemm River to find it crystal clear with no wind over the 3ft flat causing the fish to spook easily. I managed a few small undersize bream on a greedyguts 66. I got inpatient having the lure fowl up on lose weed nearly every cast and I switched to a damiki armor shad 3inch plastic in skin blue. I started search the area for legal bream. At 9:30am I drifted over a area or patchy weed and working my plastic fast over the weed. I quickly manage to fill my bag with 3 37cm bream. I decided to keep moving leaving the spot for the next day and find new area holding fish for day two. I move 100 metres from my main spot and managed a good upgrade to a 42cm bream on a shad type plastic. It got a bit quiet and I rigged a damiki d grub on a 1/12 fishing a small drop off and it get engulfed on the drop.
A few cast later I left the plastic sitting in the bottom for 10 seconds and I felt a massive tick in the line and I managed another good fish upgrading a 37 with a 39cm. With the wind blowing I decided to do a long drift heading towards bobs bay and making long cast into the wind I then caught another small upgrade of 50grams on the damiki armor shad in baby bass coloured green with a green spike it pen. I ended up with 2.85kg and leading day one.
The weather was pretty bad due to the wind but it was all go for the tournament. I headed straight to my first spot and they weren’t there. I just moved 10m and a tad deeper at 4.5ft and I managed to get two undersize bream in two casts on the damiki armor shad in baby bass and coloured uv green. I decided to slow down and fish the area thoroughly and found a small area and got my first legal a 40cm bream. I switched up to another shad type lure and got another legal and the media boat came in for a few happy snaps while I was fighting the fish. There was a few hairy moments where the fish would take a big run while I was trying to net it. Manage to get the fish in the boat and I had my second legal a 37cm bream.
A short time later I switched to a damiki armor shad in skin blue and got my second legal to fill my bag a 30cm bream. I then had issues with my power pole as it stopped working and I was stuck fishing one spot while I thought what to do. I decided to sit on the livewell and was lucky enough to pull it partly up so I wasn’t stuck in the one location and didn’t tip the kayak. I then had to get some help from another competitor to get it all the way up. I then moved to another drop off and was catching bream after bream for about an hour with them all being around 31 - 33cm upgrading a bit at a time. I then decided to go back to the spot where I got my better legal and the wind was really blowing. I started casting into the wind and I got a lot more bites as the wind wasn’t moving the lure up the water column. With casting into the wind and changing the jig head to a 1/8 I finally managed to get another good upgrade on a d grub. I hoped I had enough to keep me up the top. At 12:00 I decided to head back to the flats out the front of the launch spot as the wind was bad and I didn’t want to risk being late. I caught a couple of good fish but no upgrades. It was a nerves wait as anyone had the chance for a massive 3kg+ bag. I weighted in last and my bag went 2.71kg and enough to keep me on top and take out my second win at Bemm River with a total of 5.56kg
Tackle was a millerods bream buster brawler with a 1000 size Shimano Stradic ci4 spooled with 3lb fluorocarbon straight through.
Lures were a Damiki d grub, armor shad and another shad type lure rigged on a 1/12 hidden weight and 1/8 jighead. Also added some uv and colour with a green spike it pen.
Thanks to Hobie Fishing for all their hard work it takes to set up and run the events and the sponsors that sponsor the hobie series and make these competitions possible. A big thanks to my sponsors and the people that look after me Searingtackle, Masterangler, Millerods, Madkeen Fishing and Totally Immersed Watersports Nowra."