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I began looking for a charter in June to take the girlfriend’s son, Zac out fishing. I have done a number of light tackle sportfishing charters out of Cairns over the years and was looking for a change. The main thing was for the 12 year old to get a taste for proper fishing and I was looking for a charter which would nurture him without mollycoddling. I contacted numerous operators but one in particular got my attention. That was Sea Fever, specifically Kathryn Matthews. Kathryn was professional, understanding, empathic and helpful throughout and I was absolutely convinced that the choice was the right one. No offence, Ash, but Kathryn was the reason that I made the booking. It was never in doubt and that proved to be the right decision. Ashley and Pauli could not have done a better job. Both guys were exceptional in every way, skilled, courteous, helpful, friendly, funny and great to be with. Pauli helped Zac, but did not make him feel patronised, which was absolutely the right balance between giving him the help he needed and making him feel inadequate. We were fed extremely well and had a very happy two days. Added to that, both these guys are extremely skilled fishermen. I have fished with a lot of skipper/deckie combinations and these two are right up there with the best. The fishing was excellent, Zac’s previous PB was a 350g silver perch, so the 30kg Spaniard was a substantial improvement on that! The 8kg Red Emperor was welcome and went down well at Fish Devine in Airlie. Amongst those two glorious fish were many Spaniards, shark mackerel, shark, cod, coral trout, red throat emperor, moses perch, venus tusk fish, longtail tuna, mack tuna, spangled emperor, nannygai and who knows what else. I lost count, but I would say that Zac caught close to 50 fish in two days. We trolled four rods and all four went off several times. I am grateful for the way we were treated and what about the whales and dolphins? What a bonus. Excellent job, guys, we will be back.
Regards, Andrew Self, Gold Coast – July 2014 

 

Ash, Paul & Kathryn,
What a great day we, made more special by the way we dropped really lucky with the weather, I reckon you have 4 more future customers, the conversation around the table on Saturday night was nothing but praise, happy faces and happy with the amount of fish caught. Thanks guys it was a blast!! Until next time.

Tom Butler, Moranbah – June 2014 

 

Hi Ashley,
I cannot begin to express my gratitude to you, Kathryn and Paul for your professionalism and caring attitude. Nothing was ever too much, and accommodating my elderly father in the way you did was enormously appreciated. Your knowledge of boating and fishing in the area we traversed is second to none and you are to be commended at the highest level for the standard of service you provide.

Kind Regards, Vasilios Kordos, Melbourne – March 2013 

 

Ash,
On behalf of myself and the 3 Brisbane guys (Ben, Matt & Mark –the pom) I would once again like to thank you for a terrific “total” experience on our recent overnight trip. You and Kathryn along with your deckie Jordon have a terrific product. The professionalism starts right at the initial contact and is carried right through the presentation of yourselves, your vessel and your gear. I have fished with fishing clubs and charter skippers in this area for 25 years and the 2 overnight trips we have done with you have convinced me that your operation is the best that I have encountered. Your ability to find fish, whether it be GT’s on poppers or Spanish or other pelagics on the troll, or reef species from the bottom was borne out by the estimated catch of over 25 different species in the 2 days on board. Yours and Jordon’s hard work in keeping your guests happy and comfortable, complemented by your obvious enthusiasm for what you do makes the whole experience great value. Just make sure that you keep those dates open for us for next year....although you will have trouble topping this trip.....perhaps that elusive BILLFISH!!
Ed Pace, Mackay – September 2012
PS I can recommend Wahoo grilled in a mild Cajun marinade.

 

Ash,
Thanks for the photos. We all had a great time. The fishing was unbelievable and beyond any of our expectations. Hooking up to those big GT's was something I won’t forget and can’t wait to do again. The big Spanish Mackerel was the icing on the cake. Thanks to you and Jordan for looking after us so well. We’ll be back!
Regards Graham, Brisbane – September 2012

 

I was part of a group of four from Brisbane on a Sea Fever 2 day/2 night charter to some of the best fishing grounds I have ever seen. Pelagics were fantastic fun - GT's, spanish mackeral, tuna. We also got on to plenty of quality bottom fish to bring home. The Skipper, Ash made the trip relaxing, laid back and enjoyable. The service was fantastic and it was a whole reef experience, rather than just one aspect. Couldn't recommend it highly enough. Will be back!
Brad Edwards, Brisbane – September 2012

 

Hi Ashley, 
We had an absolutely wonderful time! You guys are a class act and work incredibly hard to ensure everyone is having a good time. We really appreciate it and would recommend you to anyone who asks. Thanks, again, for all your help!

Sarah & Jim, USA – September 2012

 

Hi Ashley,
Thanks for another great trip, everything was again first class. Chris still can’t stop talking about the fish we caught. Hope you have a safe & productive trip up north.
Regards, David, Melbourne – August 2012

 

Hi Ashley,
I along with the other crew just wanted you to know that our fishing trip on the 3rd August was fantastic. We could not have asked for better weather or a better Captain, and Deckhand in Jordan. The fishing was great as was the food and company. We will be back next year for another great day out on Sea Fever. Once again thank you on behalf of us all. Dale is still talking about the big Mackerel that got away.
Cheers and best wishes, Kevin, Lyn, Dale, Andy, Brendan and Therese, Mackay – August 2012

 

Hi Ash,
I wish words could describe what an amazing trip we had with you and Jordie! It truly was the best fishing trip we have ever been on anywhere in the world! Your expertise, knowledge, and great personality are the perfect combination for a world-class charter service! We look forward to seeing you next time we come down under!

Warmest Regards, Rick Schwerdtfeger, USA – January 2012 

 

Hey guys,
Thanks for the photos, they were great. You only have one first trip like that with your son and I'm glad yesterday was such a success, he will have memories to last his lifetime. I thought he would sleep all the way home but he was still so amped up all he did was talk about the day and his GT!

Simon Steele, Mackay – January 2012 

 

Ash,
Thanks again for a truly memorable trip we could not have asked for more, Dean was over the moon and is still telling family members and friends about the trip and we felt the effects from the GTs for the next few days!! And I am 100% sure that I will be coming on another charter with you guys! Congrats on the win in the tournament and once again thank you for a trip of a lifetime!

Regards, Graeme Cox – October 2011 

 

Hi Ashley,
Mate, just a quick note to say thank you for a great day. I have worked with quite a few skippers over the years doing live and dead fish as well as trawlers, and without a doubt you displayed the best all round attitude and level of professionalism that I have witnessed. Your vessel is brilliant and you have great handle on what’s going on. I am really looking forward to bringing my whole family up to go out with you as we discussed. Jordan also is a good deck hand and I believe you will teach him right and bring out the best in him as he too shows a great outlook. Anyway, thanks again mate.

Dale Burgess – October 2011

Ash,
I wish to thank yourself and all involved for an excellent trip, everyone has passed on their thanks and commented on how yourself and Jordan went the extra mile for us. Special mention has to go to the young bloke as all of us commented on his professionalism on the day and how hard he worked, good stuff Jordan!! Mate I will be in touch soon, till then thank you once again for a great day from all aboard.

Kind Regards, Jamin Sutton – September 2011

 

Hi Ash,
Thanks for the photos- there are some fantastic shots there! Just want to thank you, Ben and Kathryn for putting on one of the most enjoyable trips I've ever been on. We had high expectations of your operation and you delivered (and then some!) on all the key points we were after. How many trips can boast (in only 2 days to catch Gts up to 30kg, Spanish Mackeral, Red Emporer, Spangled Emporer, Coral Trout and the list goes on. Your guiding and fish finding skills are second to none and it was a pleasure to spend time onboard "Reel Work" with you and Ben. I would recommend anyone considering a fishing adventure with you, stop wasting their time and book it now! We will be back that's for sure.

Best regards Doug Lindsay, Brisbane – July 2011


Ashley,
Björn and I would like to take this opportunity to thank you once again for the fantastic experience on Sea Fever. Ben and you make a fantastic team and it was a very pleasurable experience for us to be onboard your boat.
You are very professional in your handling of the boat, the knowledge of where to fish and you take special care for all passengers you have on board.
You made us feel very special and it was fun to have my catch in the local paper.

Very best wishes from Robbyna and Björn from Stockholm, Sweden – July 2011


G’day Ashley,
Just wanted to say a huge thank you to you and Ben for an AWESOME days fishing on Saturday.
We really couldn't fault the day, from your friendly and enthusiastic attitude, the constant attention from yourself and Ben ensuring that we always had lines rigged and ready to fish with, and your knowledge, experience and ability to find the fish all day long!
Both Dane and I had a fantastic time, and we are still talking in awe of the thrill of having such big fish (usually a shark in Danes case!) hooked up. Danes nannygai and my chinaman have already done the email circuit and there are many an impressed and envious angler out there right now!
We are looking forward to receiving the photos that you took, particularly of my spanish mackerel, the fishing was so good that we really didn’t have time to take many of our own, another indicator of how good the day was!
We will be back as soon as work permits, hopefully for an overnighter, and will highly recommend Sea Fever Sportfishing to everyone we know.
Cheers again Ashley, for making Daneos birthday weekend one to remember.

Kind regards, Claire – May 2011


I was very fortunate to have Ash take me to the reef just before Easter this year (2011). By lunchtime we had landed a big Red Emperor, Nannygai,
Spangled Emperor and Spanish mackerel. To cap off a great mornings fishing, I also caught my first GT on a popper which was a hell of a lot of fun. Fishing doesn't get much better than that!! Thanks Ash.

Cheers, Mark Taylor (Former Australian Cricket Captain) – April 2011


Ash,
Thanks for the best couple of days fishing we have experienced. Jigging, Trolling, Bottom bashing for such a wide variety of species and of course the Popper Fishing for the GT’s .. Thanks for your enthusiasm and professionalism and to Ben for working so hard for us. We will definitely be back and can highly recommend your charter.

Simon, Jim and Dougal, Sydney – July 2010


G’day Ash,
Thank you for the excellent photo’s, all were great and shows you certainly have talent. I cannot thank you enough for the two magnificent days spent on Sea Fever, best charter I have ever been on and only made possible by the professionalism both yourself and Ben showed throughout both trips. The fishing was unbelievable, catering was great all of which will live with me forever so much so, I’m now looking forward to the next time!
Kindest regards, Don, Brisbane – June 2010


Ash,
On behalf of Nick, Andrew, and all of us at Hook, Line and Sinker, just wanted to formally express our sincere thanks for your generous hospitality during our time in the Whitsundays. Your in-kind assistance was greatly appreciated and your valuable support allowed us to shoot what will be two fantastic episodes.
We were very impressed with Sea Fever’s product offering and Reel Work was just ideal. Please thank Benny for all his efforts too – greatly appreciated. Be assured we’ve been spreading the good word about Sea Fever to all and sundry in Tas!
Best wishes and thanks again,

Richard (for all at Hook, Line and Sinker), Tasmania – March 2010


Hello Ash,
Just wanted to say a big thank to you and Ben for the great day out fishing the Reef on Sea Fever. I’ve done a number of Great Barrier Reef fishing trips over the years and I rate the day on your boat the best I have ever experienced. From the minute we were welcomed onto the boat till we left with a huge bag of fresh fish, the whole day was very professional. Of course catching a wide range of fish helped make the day such a success for us but it was your professionalism and knowledge that allowed us to catch them! Can I also say that your ‘deckie’ Ben helped make the day enjoyable with his happy and helpful disposition and his knowledge of fishing the Reef.

Regards James, Whitsundays – January 2010


Hi Ashley,
Just a note to repeat our thanks for the great fishing day we had with you on the reef. The kids and me have not stopped jabbering about the day and proudly showing anyone who will watch the great photos we got.
Really hoping to get up there and repeat the session - will book early - and thanks for fitting us in.
Have told all my mates about your great operation - they are green with envy and would love to join you some time as well.
Nick Ring and Kids, NSW – December 2009


Hi Ash,
Just a short email to say thanks again, sensational trip! Anson will be itching to get back asap! I posted a report of the trip on fishnet, follow link…
http://www.fishnet.com.au/forums/viewtopic.php?t=95338&f=3
Regards John, Victoria – November 2009


(John & co rebooked with us in May this year and posted another trip report on fishnet, click here to check it out.)