Fishing near Hope Vale
Travelling north out of Cooktown harbour you pass Indian Head and Knob Point both worthy fishing spots. About 12 nautical miles north from Cooktown is South Bedford, this location offers a good culmination of contours, inshore reef, wrecks and current lines coming together to form one great fishery. Trolling lures for Spanish mackerel, tuna, queenfish and big trevally can result in fast and furious action in this highly dynamic area; getting a feed shouldn’t be a problem.
A few miles further north takes you to North Bedford with its stunning perspective of the coloured sands and a view of the McIvor river mouth. Plenty of inshore reef and a few wrecks to fish. Big barra and coral trout inhabit the rocks and are caught regularly on a variety of methods. A fun method is to throw surface lures around for some truly spectacular hits.
Lies approx 20 nautical miles north of Cooktown; up and around Cape Bedford. It takes about 1 hour by boat or 2 hours (approx 80km) from Cooktown by road to get to Morgan’s landing. You can camp and launch smaller boats at Morgan’s landing which is 8km off the main track. 4WD is necessary and launching on a low tide needs extreme caution. Alternatively drive onto the Flattery beach, turning right for the river mouth, along the sandy beach until the very end where there are limited camping spots and small tinnies can be launched. Access by road is not advised during the wet. The McIvor is a truly unique fishery. Coral reef lye just offshore; flats fishing possibilities abound at the mouth in the right weather. Big sand dunes come down to the river inside the mouth, where lots of fun can be had with queenies and trevally on Poppers. The river then twists its way up through the mangroves passing deep holes and snags, junctions, rock bars etc. A saltwater resistant palm called Nypa dominates the mangroves in several places providing a jungle feel. Fishing can be awesome with many methods working well on all your usual estuarine tropical fish. Traversing the beach is best done on a low tide. Certainly an area that’s unique and well worth an exploration. It has it all for the 4WD, fishing and camping enthusiast, or for those that just want to get away.
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