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Fishing success - with a porta bote | Category: Fishing Talk

scorpio07 2 years ago

Hi guys, went out in my Porta-Bote three times last week on good to excellent fishing days and came back every time with a feed. I've got to the stage that unless I'm camped right next to a fishing spot I only bother when the solunar signs are favourable.
It's quite funny to be putting my boat in at 9:30 am or whatever just as all the early risers are coming in complaining about lack of fish, only to return a couple of hours later with that night's dinner on ice.
Happy fishing to all,

Mark Totzke 2 years ago

Hi Ian,

sounds like you had some great fishing. It's amazing what a difference it makes when fishing during the right times, isn't it.
I also quite often see people heading out at the wrong times, catching little to nothing.
I'm like you - I usually head out during a major or minor and come back with a feed within two hours max.
I got too much other stuff to do then spending the whole day out on the water waiting for bites.

Whereabouts are you fishing?


a snapper a day keeps the doctor away
itsaboat 2 years ago

I usually get similar results too.

I am interested in your Porta-Bote. I have been thinking about saving up for one. It would be great if you started a new topic about it. I would be very interested in hearing an owners honest opinion.

Oh...and welcome to the Forum, Ian.

itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !
scorpio07 2 years ago

Hiya Mark, I'm living in Maryborough Qld at the moment while we get ourselves organised with a bigger caravan before heading off travelling again, so I usually fish at Burrum Heads.
There's good range of spots to fish, and it's pretty well weatherproof no matter which way the wind's blowing.
I generally find the mouth of a mangrove creek can be pretty productive for Bream, Grunter and Flathead, and I've had some good tussles with stingrays on the flats as well,

scorpio07 2 years ago

G'day mate, I'm very happy with my Porta Bote. It's a 12 footer and weighs 31 kg's I think, it does take about ten minutes longer to set it up than launching a trailer boat, but I can live with that.
We're caravanners, so I can carry a 12 ft. boat on my roof and load and unload it by myself without any fancy winches and rollers, and there's room up top for a box to hold the seats, transom, two part oars and the anchor.
I power it with a 5.8hp Parsun 2 stroke, and it gets up on the plane very quickly with me in it, and a little more slowly with the missus on board. Dunno how fast, probably 12-15 knots one up, ten or twelve two up.
She much prefers it to the 10 foot ally punt we took around Aus., she doesn't get wet motoring into a chop.
It's a very seaworthy little rig too and very dry and stable. You just have to get used to the fact that it flexes and wobbles, once you get your head around that you just enjoy the way it works.
People tend to be fascinated when you set it up and fold it up, I often have an audience watching me.
Ian, and thanks for the welcome.

itsaboat 2 years ago

No worries mate...I try to welcome everyone..but some people just don't deserve it

You seem like a pretty good bloke to me. So you get a very warm welcome to Fishing Reminder

Well, it looks like you have a few things that get my attention...That Parsun outboard ?? I have always thought cheap. But I have seen a few boats with them. Maybe I am being a bit pedantic, but the thought of rowing back to shore is always on the back of my mind. How have you found it? Any issues?

Thanks for the feed back on the Porta-bote. I have never heard of anyone saying it flexes and wobbles. That is just the sort of feed back I have been looking for !!! So thank you

So it would be a bit like a cheap fibre glass dingy? The type that you cannot stand cannot put your foot in the middle?

I am not thinking of a motor to go with it...I have a Susuki 2.2 HP and a Mercury 6 HP. Both 2 stroke. I have seen plenty of inflatables being pushed along nicely with 4 HP. My Susie 2.2 pushes my 12 foot tinnie along, sure not to a plane but just nicely she does. With 2 persons on board I need to zig zag when going head on in to a fast out going flow (that is with the Susie) but nothing that would upset an old salt.

A 10 foot punt ??? Right around Australia ??? No wonder the misses is filing for divorce !!

31kg is good. How do you carry yours? I am a full time house sitter, so sort of on the road like you. So weight and how to, is big on the agender. I have seen people carry their porta-bote on the side of their van, but I don't like the idea of that. 31kg down force when you hit a pot-hole is a lot of stress on the van frame.

A lot of questions I know...What are the joins like? The joins where it folds. Honest answer, are they any good? Or is it a point to keep an eye on?

More questions to follow...of course

itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !
scorpio07 2 years ago

Hiya mate, good questions, and just the ones I researched before putting out my hard-earned.
First the outboard, it came as part of the package when I bought the boat, and I'm quite impressed, over approx. 4 hours running it used 5 litres of fuel, apparently 80% of it's components are compatible with Mariner and Mercury (water pump impellers and the like), and I've had no reliability issues with it at all. It's easy to start and performs really well.
And if you have a BCF member's card you can buy one brand new for around 900 dollars.
Now the boat, they are designed to flex, thus absorbing wave impact, the hull material is 4mm co-polymer that is used in things like car bumpers and bullet proof vests apparently, is UV stabilised, impervious to acids, oils, fuels and is extremely tough. The Japanese Coast Guard standard integrity test is to put 250 kg's of concrete in a boat then drop it from 6 metres up into the water, no worries. They're also certified by the US Coastguard, and the relevant authorities here in Aus and overseas, and used by numerous Search and Rescue organisations in Europe.
The hull seams are formed by routing a groove in the material iself which is then stapled together with a sealing strip between them, and what looks like a back ag pipe cover over the outside. They've also been tested at 500,000 folds with no failure, and the manufacturers offer a ten year hull warranty, it also has 300 pounds of positive buoyancy and floats level when swamped.
I routinely stand up in mine to chuck lures, very stable, just a bit flexy underfoot.
Folded up it's about the size of a stand-up paddle board and goes on the roof bars of my 80 Series Land Cruiser.
When loading it I lift the front up first, then the back and strap it down, job's right.
Compared to the little tinny? A LOT easier to load and unload, and far more seaworthy.
I was down at Mary River Heads a couple of weeks ago on a big runout tide with 15-20 knots of northerly blowing against it picking up a nasty two or three foot chop with square edges and whitecaps and I was PLAYING in it, surfing, running through it at all angles towing a spinner, not a drop of water came on board. The tinny would have swamped, no doubt about it.
In fact the only other boat out that day was a 16 foot centre console that also caught no fish.
Hope you find this informative,

itsaboat 2 years ago

Thanks Ian,

Yes, very informative.

I didn't know about the Japan test thingy.

I was just looking at their specs page. They say the 12 foot model has a load capacity of 305kg. That is people. motor, gear etc. But just under that they say it has a capacity of 4 persons...If the average person weighs say 75 to 80kg?? 4 persons at 80kg is 320kg which leaves no space for life jackets, oars, motor or even a bottle of beer . I wonder what they would say if a warranty claim was made "sorry you had 4 persons on board so you were over loaded".

It is good to get some owner feed back...because as I just demonstrated, you cannot trust the hype.

I didn't realise the folding joints were a channel. I just assumed it was some sort of welded system.

I am definitely going to take a closer look. I have been thinking about it for a while, but the hype has kept me at arms length. So it is very good to get an actual owners feed back.


itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !
scorpio07 2 years ago

Given that it's only me and the missus, or me by myself in the boat, I don't worry too much about load limits. They're always set very much on the side of safety by a massive amount anyway, and I always let the boat tell me when enough is enough.
Comfort and convenience dictates to me how many people I put on board, along with the availability of appropriate life jackets of course.
And if I'm fishing I limit the number of bodies in my boat to a number that that lets everybody work their gear without hooking someone's eye out anyway.
So it's all good, I like my Porta Bote, it suits me and my lifestyle, and gets me to places I can't get to otherwise safely and economically.
Cheers mate,

itsaboat 2 years ago

I have been in transit and not able to reply sooner.

I had not thought of the fact that you can take it just about anywhere. So you are not restricted to boat ramps.

You would still need 2 people if you were to carry it any distance, with fishing gear, motor etc. But I have seen plenty of places where I thought a boat would be ideal but the nearest ramp is just to far.

itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !
scorpio07 2 years ago

I have a pair of clamp-on wheels that came with the boat, you can get them from Supercheap Autos, you have to modify them a bit so they work on a flexible boat, or you can get the Porta-Bote ones that are custom made for the boat and work better.
I generally assemble the boat minus the motor with all the gear in, put the wheels on, trolley it to the water by hand then take the motor separately either in the car or with my fold-up Aldi trolley to the boat.
You can fit the whole lot together and take it in one go, but if the ground or ramp is a bit rough the wheels can pop off because the hull flexes a bit, and it's a pain to put them back. This doesn't happen if you leave that extra 20kg's of of motor off.
On smooth ground it's not a problem.
Having a 4wd I can often just drive down the beach and assemble the whole lot at the water's edge, then skulldrag it out by the painter when I get back. Porta-Botes are tough, you can scratch them but they're bloody hard to put a hole in. I've driven mine up a concrete boat ramp that had waves breaking on it because it was the only landing place available, no drama, just had to get the motor tilted in time. Few scratches on the black pipe joints was all.

Mark Totzke 2 years ago

Now I really want one too Met a guy at a campsite with a porta bote the other day and he was also very happy with it.
And he caught some nice fish with it.

a snapper a day keeps the doctor away
Wayne Barson 2 years ago

Hi there Ian
Just joined this site
Enjoyed reading your posts
I too have a caravan car topper boat loader fold up trailer etc
Have now built myself a slide off camping box that jacks off the back of ute
Means I can tow car topper behind on a standard road trailer
Am thinking of heading up your way next Friday till Anzac day giving me 5 days away.
Though of trying my luck around Burrum Heads
Be greatfull of any tips/ local knowledge

scorpio07 2 years ago

Hiya Wayne, looks like a handy rig you've got there.
I was out at Burrum Heads yesterday and bombed toally, not even a nibble.
The locals reckoned it had been quiet all week, and they did have a major fishing comp over Easter that saw a LOT of boats out on the the water, so that may have had something to do with it.
I've had success fishing the mangrove creek mouths for Bream, Grunter and Flathead, and the sand flats opposite the boat ramp are always good for a stingray if you want a bit of a tussle. They like prawns, and a stingray fillet makes good eating after being soaked in salted water with a good splash of vinegar in it for a few hours in the fridge. Very much like the flake you get in fish and chips down south which is of course shark. No bones either.
There are whiting on the sandflats, and on a calm day it can be worth a drift with soft plastics for flathead out the front.
If you're in the area Tuan and Boonooroo down on the Straits can be good for Bream around the moored boats in Tuan Creek, prawns and hardy head fillets work well there.
Mary River Heads is a good spot on a good day too, I've caught Tailor and Mackerel on the run out tide fishing the gutters opposite the main boat ramp. Last time I was there they had closed the main ramp for an upgrade and so had to use the one out the front, no fun in a northerly, and it can cut up quite rough there in a northeaster on the outgoing tide. Not bad in a southeasterly as long as it's below about 10-15 knots. Don't know if the main ramp is open yet, check the Fraser Coast Council website.
Best of luck,

itsaboat 2 years ago

Hahaha...I only just noticed the tent ...I was thinking yeah nice car and boat ! but there is a tent too

I put my lapse of attention down to delusion caused by blood loss...

Yeah, It is badder than it looks...I have to say badder cos I can't type "worse" one handed...Took the tip of my finger clean off with a sharp knife. That is a good thing cos a blunt knife would have taken longer . Not good when one is on blood thinning meds. Lost a lot of the red stuff even got dizzy.

Just the thought of vinegar right now scares the hell out of me. But I had to add my thumbs up for vinegar cured ray wings. Oh yes, yum. Ray wings, salt water with a good big plash of vinegar, leave it for a few hours, then on to a smokey barbie and wash it down with a cold beer.

itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !
Wayne Barson 2 years ago

Hi Ian
Thanks for all the tips
Wouldnt mind getting into some of those whiting
Are there plenty of areas to pump yabbies and find those little black solider crabs

Wayne Barson 2 years ago

LYou be carefull there
You know that knives always win
Have never tried stingray
Do you skin them?

itsaboat 2 years ago

I am a qualified chef which makes it even badder (cos I can't type "worse" one handed) when a kinfe bites back !!

That looks good. Is that one of them "bat wing" awnings?

itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !
itsaboat 2 years ago

Oh sorry, pain killers are dulling my senses...

I don't skin them. But you can. I don't see why it would make a differencwe. Skin on might keep in moisture so I guess that might add flavour. Rays are just like shark...good eating...and fun to catch

itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !
scorpio07 2 years ago

Plenty of yabbie pumping areas on the low tide at Burrum heads,

scorpio07 2 years ago

P.S. Yes, I skin Stingray fillets