Yes Daz, leave the scales on. The scales and skin will keep the moisture in. I just gut them then push the stick (or skewer) from the head to the tail. So you go through the mouth then into the tail...Going the other way is harder because you have to pierce the tail skin from the outside if you get what I mean.
You should be allowed to have a raised fire ?? Or even a charcoal BBQ ?? A lot of places in Australia don't allow camp fires on the ground, but a raised pit type fire is fine.
itsaboat mate...Life is just a boat and then ya marry one !