Cairns River Fishing

Your Cairns River Fishing adventures on the smooth waters of the Mulgrave and Russell Rivers and Mutchero Inlet. The day begins in the shadows of the mountains and takes you through Rainforest covered Russell River National Park; the rivers start out as freshwater but turn to saltwater as it moves closer to the mouth, before finally entering the ocean and flowing out to the Great Barrier Reef.

The Mulgrave & Russell Rivers and Mutchero Inlet is approximately 40 kms south of Cairns, along the Bruce Highway in Far North Queensland, is lesser known, nestled under Queensland`s highest Peaks Mt Bartle Frere in the Wooroonooran National Park https://parks.des.qld.gov.au/parks/wooroonooran and Mount Bellenden ker also in Wooroonooaran National Park https://parks.des.qld.gov.au/parks/wooroonooran

Mutchero Inlet is protected by Constantine Point to the south and east, and Palmer Point and Flirt Point to the north; so it comes as a surprise to learn that Reef Fish are not uncommon inside the inlet. Further upstream amongst a maze of rainforest-backed mangroves.

Why not come and join a tropical smooth saltwater River Fishing Charter for the experience of the REAL Tropical Far North Queensland River fishing charter.

On all our river fishing charters we supply the following gear PENN 460 slammer reel on a 8-10 kg ugly stick with 10 kg mono fishing line. If you prefer you can bring along your own fishing gear.

On our popper fishing charters we supply is PENN 360 slammer reel on a Shimano raider rod with 10 kg braid fishing line.

The land and waters of Goldborough Valley are the traditional country of the `Dulabed malanbarra Yidinji speaking clan`. They called the Mulgrave River `Bana Baddi`.

Barramundi Closure

Throughout the Queensland east coast, a closed season applies to Barramundi from 12:01 am 1st November to 11:59 pm 31st January inclusive each year. It is prohibited to deliberately target Barramundi for catch and release during these closed seasons, as the stress may prevent a fish from spawning. More information can be found https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/business-priorities/fisheries/recreational/recreational-fishing-rules/closed-seasons-waters/tidal-waters

Check out our fish gallery https://fishtales.com.au/fish-gallery/

Cairns River Fishing Share Charter

Your Cairns River Fishing Charter is conducted on the Russell and Mulgrave Rivers and Mutchero Inlet (app. 40kms South of Cairns).

Whether it is a day of lure fishing for Mangrove Jack,

or a day of popper fishing for Giant Trevally

or lure fishing for Giant Queenfish,

or live-bait fishing for Fingermark,

or dead bait fishing for Barramundi. Selection of fishing spots maybe be chosen upon tidal movement, weather conditions as well as taking into account your fish target species for your Cairns River Fishing Charter. During the months of May, June, July and August this can fish extremely well with Giant Queenfish and Giant Trevally as well as Mangrove Jack, Fingermark and the famous Barramundi. This is a full day of fun, exploring and fishing!

Departure and Arrival details

  • Pick up around 6.30 am from Cairns, to which we transport everything including the vessel and trailer to the Mulgrave & Russell Rivers and Mutchero Inlet.
  • Drop off in Cairns around 4.30 pm (app.),

We supply on your fishing charter

  • All the top quality rods & PENN SLAMMERS reels,
  • All the bait (dead/live) & tackle,
  • Cold bottles of water,
  • A delicious lunch is provided
  • Esky with ice on-board,
  • and you will be guided by our experienced fishing guide for the day.

We ask you to wear and bring along

  • A long sleeve cotton shirt and wide brim hat,
  • Your sunglasses, sunscreen, camera and or action camera and a few beers are okay (cans only)

Require more information? Email us

    Full Day River Fishing

    6.30am to 4.30pm (app.)
    Maximum of 4 people per charter
    Bait (live/dead) fishing and or Popper fishing
    Your Cairns River Fishing Charter fishing on the river system of the Mulgrave and Russell Rivers and the Mutchero Inlet approximately 40 kms south of Cairns. This is a day of fun, exploring and fishing. Pick up from Cairns at 6.30 am (confirmation the night before, pick up point to be confirmed) for transportation. Drop off in Cairns 4.30 pm (app.)

    We supply the following

    • All top quality rods & PENN SLAMMERS reels,
    • All bait (dead/live) & tackle,
    • Including lures/poppers (supplied on basis if lost to be replaced),
    • A delicious lunch,
    • Cold bottles of water,
    • You will be guided by our experienced fishing guide.

    We ask you to wear and bring onboard

    • Wear a long sleeve cotton shirt and wide brim hat; along with your sunglasses, sunscreen, camera and a few beers (cans only) are okay.

    Require more information? Email us

    $240 per person

    Cairns River Fishing Private Charter

    FULL DAY RIVER FISHING

    6.30 am to 4.30 pm (app.)

    Up to 4 people lure/popper fishing

    Up to 4 people bait (live/bait) fishing

    Your Cairns River Fishing Charter is conducted on the Russell and Mulgrave Rivers and Mutchero Inlet (app. 40kms South of Cairns) with multi-fishing locations, spots, snags there is a multitude of fish species to catch.

    Whether it is a day of lure fishing for Mangrove Jacks,

    or a day of popper fishing for Giant Trevally,

    or using Surface Lures for Giant Queenfish,

    or  live-bait fishing for Fingermark,

    or dead bait fishing for Barramundithe day is tailored to include your fishing needs & wants including target species. This is a full day of fun, exploring and fishing!

    We supply on all our river fishing charters

    • All top quality rods & PENN SLAMMERS reels,
    • All bait (dead/live) & tackle,
    • All lures & poppers (supplied on basis if lost to be replaced),
    • Cooled bottles of water & tea/coffee,
    • Esky with ice,
    • A delicious lunch,
    • Transfers to and from Cairns Accommodation House or re-organised pick up/drop off location,
    • and you will be guided by our experienced fishing guide.

    We ask you to wear and bring onboard

    • Your long sleeve cotton shirt and wide brim hat; along with your camera, sunscreen, raincoat, sunnies and a few beers (cans only) are OK.

    Require more information? Email us

    Full Day River Fishing Private Charter

    6.30am to 4.30pm (app.).

    Maximum of 4 people per charter.

    Bait (live/dead) fishing and/or lure/popper fishing

    Your Cairns River Fishing Charter is conducted on the Russell and Mulgrave Rivers and Mutchero Inlet (app. 40kms South of Cairns) with multi-fishing locations, spots, snags there is a multitude of fish species to catch.

    Whether it is a day of lure fishing for Mangrove Jacks,

    or a day of popper fishing for Giant Trevally,

    or using Surface Lures for Giant Queenfish,

    or  live-bait fishing for Fingermark,

    or dead bait fishing for Barramundithe day is tailored to include your fishing needs & wants including target species. This is a full day of fun, exploring and fishing!

    We supply on all our river fishing charters

    • All top quality rods & PENN SLAMMERS reels,
    • All bait (dead/live) & tackle,
    • All lures & poppers (supplied on basis if lost to be replaced),
    • Cooled bottles of water & tea/coffee,
    • Esky with ice,
    • A delicious lunch,
    • Transfers to and from Cairns Accommodation House or re-organised pick up/drop off location,
    • and you will be guided by our experienced fishing guide.

    We ask you to wear and bring onboard

    • Your long sleeve cotton shirt and wide brim hat; along with your camera, sunscreen, raincoat, sunnies and a few beers (cans only) are OK.

    Require more information? Email us

    $960 for up to 4 people

    COMMONLY CAUGHT
    RIVER FISH SPECIES

    Barramundi fishing in Cairns, Australia

    Barramundi

    Lates calcerifer
    Barramundi also known as a Barra. Has a soft and delicate white flesh; size is generally to 150 cm and 60 kg. The minimum size limit of 58 cm to maximum size limit of 120 cm and has a closed season from 1st December to 1st February each year to allow for spawning. Starts life out living in Freshwater of rivers and creeks, then ventures downstream into estuaries and coastal shallows. They are well-known and sought-after for their aerobic abilities when hooked. Definitely a `bucket list` species.

    Another happy customer showing off his Barred javelin fish

    Barred Javelin

    Pomodasys kaakan
    Locally known as `Grunter` from their characteristic `grunting` sound by grinding the teeth in the back of there throat. Can grow up to 70 cm and 5 kg. Has a minimum size limit of 40 cm. The flesh is firm with a distinctive flavour and an excellent table fish. This is not a commonly caught fish species in this river system; however we do see the bigger breeding size from time to time.

    Fish Tales Charters Cairns River Fishing

    Blackspotted Rockcod

    Epinephelus malabaricus

    Here in Cairns we refer to them as Blackspotted Estuary Cod. Commonly referred as `the coral trout of the estuaries`. The flesh is coarse yet creamy texture. Delicious table fish species. Size up to 180 cm and 100 kg. Minimum size limit is 38 cm to 120 cm. Usually lives alone or in small groups, covering a variety of habitats from rivers and estuaries to offshore reefs. Commonly caught is the gold spotted estuary cod and the black spotted estuary cod.

    Guided river fishing on the Mulgrave & Russell Rivers for a Bluespot Mullet

    Bluespot Mullet

    Valamugil seheli
    This is not a fish species we catch a lot of. Form schools to inhabit shallow coastal waters with either muddy, sandy bottoms of estuaries, rivers and coastal shorelines.

    Fish Tales Charters Cairns River Fishing

    Blue Threadfin

    Eleutheronema tetradactylmn
    Are distinctive coloured from silvery blue, to silvery white or yellowish-white in older fish. Has four pectoral filaments that are short and thick. Minimum size 40 cm with a limit of 10. An excellent table fish.

    Fishing for Dusky Flathead while River Fishing

    Dusky Flathead

    Platycephalus fuscus
    Locally referred to as a `Flatty`. Size can be up to 120 cm and 15 kg. Highly-sort after for its SWEET yet small fillets. Bottom-dwelling fish of coastal bays & estuaries. A very slow growing fish species. Minimum size limit of 40 cm to 75 cm.

    Zac is happy to show off his 66cm Fingermark (Golden snapper) while fishing in the Mulgrave River

    Fingermark

    Lutjanus johnii
    Fingermark maybe known as a Golden snapper. Can grow up to 10 kg in weight. Live mainly around mangrove-lined estuaries, to the rocky headlands, but are mainly around the bottom of the snag. Has superb fighting ability and excellent eating qualities. Has a distinctive finger mark on below anterior soft dorsal fin.

    Fish Tales Charters Guided River Fishing on the Mulgrave & Russell Rivers and Mutchero Inlet

    Giant Mudcrab

    Scylla Serrata
    Locally referred to as a `Muddy`. Prefer muddy bottoms amongst the mangrove, in swallow water. Pots or dillies are the main method of capture but will take bait from line fishing. In Queensland, only male are taken, with a minimum measurement of 15 cm across the carapace; no take for females. Mud crab possession limit reduced to 7. The cooked flesh is moist, flaky and sweet. Or chilly mud crab!

    Smiles all round for these 2 happy customers, Brad & Steph and their catch of a Giant Queenfish

    Giant Queenfish

    Scomberoides commersonnianus
    Queenfish also called a Queenie; they are vicious feeder and strong fighters. Often get schools in shallow water but generally alone. Can grow up to 120 cm and 14 kg. Target species for Sports Fishing, the larger ones are preferred to cook fresh.

    Carol proudly showing us her Giant Trevally locally known as a GT

    Giant Trevally

    Caranx ignobilis
    Commonly called `GT`s`. Giant Trevally can grow up to 170 cm and over 60 kg. Live mainly in schools. A sought after angling tropical fish for eating qualities yet the flesh quality can vary between species from pale & dry to dark & oily. Commonly called GT`s. Definitely a `bucket list` species.

    Fish Tales Charters Cairns River fishing on the Mulgrave & Russell Rivers and Mutchero Inlet.

    Golden Trevally

    Gnathanodon speciosus

    Easily distinguished by its fleshy, rubbery lips and unqiue colouration ranging from bright yellow with black bars as a juvenile to golden-silvery colour as a adult. Golden Trevally uses its protractile jaw to suck out prey from the sand/reef to consume a variety of fish, crustaceans and molluscs. Can grow up to 120 cm in length.

     

    Fish Tales Charters Cairns River Fishing

    Goldspotted Rockcod

    Epinephelus coincides
    Commonly referred as `the coral trout of the estuaries`. In Cairns we know them as Goldspotted Estuary cod. The flesh is coarse yet creamy texture. Delicious table fish species. Size up to 180 cm and 100 kg. Minimum size limit is 38 cm to 120 cm. Usually lives alone or in small groups, covering a variety of habitats from rivers and estuaries to offshore reefs.

    Fish Tales Charters Cairns River Fishing

    Mangrove jack

    Lutjanus argentimaculatus
    Mangrove jack commonly referred to as a `Jack`. Can grow to 120 cm and 16 kg. Has a minimum size limit for 25 cm. The juveniles live in the mangrove estuaries then when matured they prefer the shelters inshore coral reefs. For the fisher person they have excellent fighting abilities, as well as being a good quality table fish.

    River fishing on the Mulgrave and Russell River and Mutchero Inlet

    Oxeye Herring

    Megalops cyprinoides
    In Cairns we refer to this fish species as Tarpon, they are deep and skinny yet don`t let the silver fool you. While most species are around the 1 kilo mark, they can grow up to 2.5 kilos and be up to 60 cm in length. The reality is, Oxeye Herring (Tarpon) are hard hitting with strong fighting abilities. Make a note, Oxeye Herring (Tarpon) will jump and then throw the hook (as they have the hardest mouths). Not recommended as a table fish however they make the ultimate sportsfishing species.

     

    While River fishing on the Mulgrave and Russell Rivers for Spanish Mackerel

    Spanish Mackerel

    Scomberomorus commerson
    Minimum size 75 cm. A pelagic species; has numerous thin, wavy vertical bands on body; iridescent blue-grey back; silver sides with bluish reflections; juveniles frequently spotted. Not only are they an excellent target fish they have excellent fighting abilities. Occasionally they can be caught in rivers and estuaries.

    RIVER CATCH GALLERY