Where has 2018 gone? Could the year just slowwwww right down please? This post is just a tad overdue, our apologies for that but this year #life has just gotten so far in the way it isn’t funny!
Here is a recap, from our perspective, of GGF2018!!
Preparation for Girls Gone Fishin 2018 started off as any other year of the tournament has. The call out for expressions of interest went out to teams who wanted to join in on the fun of GGF, the response was AMAZING once again, with over 90 teams expressing their interest. Unfortunately, we only had space for a limited number of teams to fish the tournament, to ensure the integrity and amazingness (that is a word, right?), of the event maintains at the level it has come to be known for. So 50 invitations went out and we ended up with 44 confirmed and participating teams for GGF2018.
Early on in the process of organising GGF2018, there was more and more noise being made in the media and by the NLC about the potential closures to the coast lines of some of our most incredible fishing locations here in the Top End, the areas that were (and more than likely will be) going to be closed included the Finnis and Little Finnis river. This was a HUGE cause for concern for us, as these were the two predominant areas that our competitors fished in, and with too much unknown around if and when it would be closed, whether there would be a permit system introduced and whether that would allow us to have all of our teams gain access to these rivers (let alone what the cost would be for each permit), a decision was made to seek out alternative locations to hold GGF2018.
One area that piqued our interest was, of course, the mighty Daly River. Not only is it an incredible part of the Top End and home to the two longest running Barra Tournaments in the NT - the Barra Classic and the Barra Nationals, it is also an incredibly diverse river that allows anglers to try out new tactics and lures, depending on the tides / conditions of the river and to learn so much more about this beautiful place we live. After meeting with the owners of Banyan Farm, Wally and Kerri, the decision was made and we were moving our tournament!! Were our girls ready for this.. F*#k yeah they were!!
We announced our news to all of the teams and the response was way better than we could have EVER anticipated! The excitement of moving to Banyan Farm was great, and came as a huge relief to us at the same time. We do acknowledge that the move did not suit everyone, but our decisions were based on factors completely out of our control, and were made to mitigate any risk of getting to tournament weekend and not being able to access the areas we needed to fish.
So our new location was confirmed, teams were excited and it was time to get back to sourcing our awesome sponsors! We were, once again, inspired and humbled by the support we received, at every level of sponsorship. Our supporters range from national organisation such as Great Northern Brewing Co and Lowrance, to local operators and startups here in Darwin such as Barramundi Adventures Darwin and Akame Tackle, just to name a few. To check out our wonderful sponsors (a.k.a the biggest legends in the world) head to our GGF 2018 page here on the website and check them out!!
Now that I have spoken about our behind the scenes of the event, it is time to get to the EXCITING part of GGF 2018 - when all the hard work, blood sweat and tears comes to fruition and our teams start rolling in for a weekend of bloody good fun!
Great Northern Welcome Night
Thursday 24th May 2018 saw the arrival of 44 teams, full of excitement, to our new home on The Daly, Banyan Farm! Our welcome night, as always, was sponsored by the amazing Great Northern Brewing Co who provide our competitors and skippers with ice cold brewski’s to get the weekend started! It is always so great to see new and old friends coming together, catching up and getting into the ‘what is your plan’ banter on welcome night.
After tea we got into our welcome night formalities - welcoming and introducing our teams, discussing the rules and thanking our amazing sponsors! Our goody bags were, once again, packed full of awesome gear for each and every competitor and skipper.
As the night progressed, it was clear which teams were catching ‘first night fever’. What is first night fever, you ask? Well, have you ever gone out for a fun night with your mates, run into other mates, and what was meant to be a nice night out, turns into the BEST night of your life? That there, is what first night fever is like! And it is catching more and more people as the years go by. A huge thanks goes out to Bridey Rose and her band mate Lukas for rocking the stage and ensuring the girls had some great tunes to dance the night away to!
Day 1 of fishing arrived and the teams were up and raring to go to see what the mighty Daly River had in store for them. Now you have to keep in mind that this was the 4th year some teams had fished GGF, and over the preceding 3 years, they had developed a great fishing style and understanding of the areas off Dundee, so a change to the Daly brought a whole new set of challenges, not only the navigation of a VERY low river, but also where to fish, what lures to fish with, how the fish act over the different tides in The Daly. Each and every team did took it in their stride and set out to see what was happening on the river.
Unfortunately for the organising committee, we didn’t have the opportunity to get out onto the water over the course of the day, a new venue meant we wanted to stay on land and make sure everything was going to plan. This resulted in a MASSIVE case of FOMO (fear of missing out), but also meant we didn’t get a first hand experience of what it was like on the water. So, as the teams started rolling in from the days fishing, Sammie, like a kid who was left out of a school excursion, asked EVERYONE what it was like - and the answers were all the same - the vibe on the water was ELECTRIC. Everyone was having fun, mingling, laughing with (and I am sure at) each other and just having a fat old time with their mates.
day one results:
Total Fish Capture - 140
1st Place - Bynoe Blush - 430 Points
2nd Place - Barra Maids - 410 Points
3rd Place - Size Matters - 390 Points
4th Place - The Humminbirds - 300 Points
Biggest Fish - 85cm - Angelina Anictomatis, Bynoe Blush
Smallest Fish - 26cm - Helen Clark, The Humminbirds
Talk about a narrow field heading into Day Two!!!
It is always really interesting to see how the field lands and the margin between teams after the first day of fishing is over, because it completely changes the way teams can behave. For example if the front runner is miles in front, you generally find most other teams will stick around and get ‘second night fever’ after the first days fishing, but if the field is narrow, and it is still anyone’s game, teams are off to bed early and nutting out their action plans for the following day. This year, it was the latter!
Another highlight of the GGF weekend is our games night, the Barralympics. This is a night where anyone who wants to participate can, and if you don’t want to and we need more numbers, you still can (and will) haha! This year saw 4 games being played, the first was a three legged race with someone who you didn’t know - talk about making new friends (or enemies) real quick! The second was a game of skill and speed - also known as the cup stacking game (now it is, anyway), the third game was all about sticking your nose where it shouldn’t be (a jar of vaseline) and then transporting cotton wool balls from one bowl to another and the final game, which sorted out the winner from the loser, was the balloon pyramid - whereby you had to create a pyramid of cups using only a balloon and your breath (and of course some cups).
Congratulations to our winner winner chicken dinner Leila Carrick for taking out the prize and winning the ultimate - a Spit Roast Hire sponsored by Top End Welding Services.
After a hearty breakfast, with thanks to the wonderful crew at Banyan Farm, the teams were on the water bright and early to see what the river had in store for them for the final day of the tournament. Teams headed off to their new found fishing spots and cast their lines with the hope today was going to be their day.
Once again, the fish turned up and the girls landed an impressive 152 fish on the final day of the tournament.
Lines out came and teams started rolling into the official tournament area to drop their score cards and photo’s off and once again, the vibe was just awesome. Happy fisho’s, happy friends, and just bloody happy people!
day two results:
Total Fish Capture - 152
1st Place - Barra Maids - 705 Points
2nd Place - The Humminbirds - 660 Points
3rd Place - Size Matters - 645 Points
4th Place - Barra Babes - 585 Points
Biggest Fish - 84cm - Rachel Kenna - Barra Maids
Smallest Fish - 19cm - Racquel Luby - Champagne Divette’s
After another great weekend of fishing, it was time to announce our winners!
Runner up best dressed team
Best dressed team
Fishin for Compliments
masterbait gossip girl
Fishilicious, for their poem -
You can teach an old dog new tricks
With a pack of 30 year olds we’ve thrown another in the mix
A 55 year old publican is learning new tricks
Now we’re not talking about fishing secrets, She ties her own knots
She’s picked up a few words, some we’d rather not
You’d think owning a pub you would have seen it all
But the Barra olympics put a start to it all
There were a few terms being thrown around but one caught her attention
It didn’t make sense so she gave it a mention
“Guys .... what does it mean when they say “spit roast”
Oh my god We were white as a ghost
Well mother dear please take a seat
Get ready for this .... you’re in for a treat
It’s when a “lady” kind of takes it times 2
... one in the mouth ...and one in the poo.
Little we knew, There were more things to learn
But trust Ol skippo gave it a turn
Russ and Lauren pull up aside
“We have a beer bong, give it a try”
At first she watched Andy to learn what to do
But of course this mamma said
SHIT GIMMEE TWO
One more thing she quite enjoyed learning was the fisherman’s sayings as the tide was just turning
NO WOBBLE NO GOBBLE skippo called from the back
“What the fucks that mean” she said with a kack
So while we caught fuck-all we all learnt something fun
What you learn at Girls Gone Fishing gets passed to your Mum.
northern cloud Smallest Barra
19cm - Racquel Luby - Champagne Divette’s
Tao house & asap biggest barra
85cm - Angelina Anictomatis - Bynoe Blush
Royal mane runner up champion angler
645 Points - Mel Krollig - Barra Maids
lowrance champion angler
775 Points - Emily Melville - Size Matters
able finance runner up champion team
1035 points - Size Matters, Emily, Melita, Helen and skipper Daryl
Great northern champion team
1115 points - Barra Maids, Dani, Colleen, Rachel, Mel
Our first independent team to take out the title!
Thats a wrap!
And just like that the weekend was over! It is never long enough, which is why we have made the decision to add another day of fishing to the tournament going forward! GGF 2019 will be held from 11 - 13 April at Banyan Farm (with the welcome night being 10th April).
A giant thanks to everyone who helps to put the weekend together, our sponsors, suppliers, committee members, marshals, worker bees and especially to Gilly, who lends a hand to anyone and everyone who needs it over the course of the weekend!
To tide you over until 2019, here are some great video’s from our videographer Bedlam TV!
See you in 2019 x