Wathumba Creek is a great spot to do some fishing. Either from the shore or from a Tinny .Its located on the western side of Fraser Island but you can only access it by vehicle from Orchid Beach.
For most part it is a two way on a narrow track that is shared by vehicles and boats. Be prepared to pull over and make way for oncoming vehicles. Take it nice and slow, it is part sand and as you get deeper inland it becomes more savannah plains like. Hard dirt, sparce trees and lots of bumps and tree roots everywhere to avoid. If you plan on driving over you need to read a little more below especially if your towing a small boat or Tinny.
Great Place For Small Boats
We often tow our tinny across here, because it’s a great spot to fish and spend the day.
We would not advise towing a big boat but something small. This is because as the tide goes out, the creek gets shallow. And if you’re up the creek and the tide goes out you’ll be stuck there until the tide comes back in. So just be aware of that when you bring your boat over.
Fishing The Incoming Tide
So your better off coming at a low tide, getting your yabbies, and then fishing the incoming tide.
You get a lot of good Whiting and Flathead, but we’ve also caught a lot Grunter over here.
There’s an abundance of Whiting and on most days you won’t have to keep anything under 28 centimeters. 28 to 35 is sort of an average size. It guaranteed if you have a hook you will have dinner.
So if you get any smaller ones, just let them go because you’ll definitely get the big ones.
Towing Your Boats Across
If you are planning on towing your boat through here, just be very gentle on your trailers, because we have repaired a lot of trailers for travellers that have bounce across tracks and broken springs, drawbars and axels because the often are driving to fast.
Remember that when you do tow your trailers, make sure you drop the air pressure in the trailer tires as well.
Depending on the weight of the boat, we’ve sort of run our trailers at about 15 psi. Seems to float over the sand nicely and doesn’t drag the vehicle down.
Driving along this track seems to take forever especially if your towing so when you reach Halfway Hill you will be smiling as the end is near.
You will recognise the hill about 8km in. You will see a huge fire break and some massive trees. There is an overtaking lane at this spot so it also a good place to get out of your vehicle and give the trailer a check over to ensure everything is ok.
Wahtumba Creek Swamp
Once you reach the camp ground at Wathumba creek you can drive your vehicle down to the mouth on the sand. If you want to go fishing in your boat you will need to reach the creek at half tide between high and low. Off load the tinny in the creek and then park your vehicle up high.
If you are in the creek, at low tide, there are deep corners that are still a couple of meters deep, these are the spots that the whiting get trapped in with the tides.
When the tide’s low we also put our crab pots on those corners so they don’t come out of the water.
Be aware that if the crab pot comes out of the water generally the Sea Eagles or the Kites will come down and snip the ropes on them and steal your bait.
We thought people were raiding our pots and stealing the crabs because all the ropes were snipped. But it was actually the Brahiminy Kites and the Sea Eagles that we’re doing it and not people.
We have also been lucky enough to score some Mangrove Jacks up in this creek. They are rare but worth fishing for.
At high tide, the water is crystal clear up in the creek Estuary. So you can pretty much sight every fish you catch.
Sometines however, at low tide, the water is a very Tan colour. This is caused by the tannin from the trees. But rest assured when the tide comes pushing in the water becomes crystal clear again.
The Wathumba track can be precarious especially if it is in peak tourist time. The sand tracks get soft and the bumps get deeper. It always a good idea to have some general recovery and repair gear in your vehicle. Nothing worse than getting stuck or having a mechanical faliure and your on your Jack jones in the middle of nowhere.
Recommend Gear to Carry
- 2 x Tyre pressure gauge
- Automatic deflator
- Portable air compressor
- Snatch strap & D Shackle
- Radiator coolant
- A basic mechanical kit with a spanner set
- gaffer tape
- a can of WD40
- jumper leads
- zip ties
- and a spare fan belt.
Access To Platypus Bay
So Platypus Bay is just north of Wathumba Creek, so if you have your boat here, just go out the mouth of the creek and yeah head north and you’re at Platypus Bay.
Often when we go squid fishing, we’ll actually put the boat in the creek at Wathumba and then zoom down to the rocks and catch our squid. And then come back.
Fishing Off The Coast from Wathumba Creek
At certain times of the year, fishing in the bay, you get all the juvenile Sailfish and little Marlin and a lot of Tuna. Mac Tuna, Bonito.
Often you will see massive schools of birds where there might be up to 100 birds feeding on Bait fish in the bay here. Its great fun to race around with little metal lures and catch the Tuna amongst all the activity in the water.
Wathumba Creek does have a small campground. Personally its NOT our favourite place to camp. At dusk you will get eaten alive by sandflies. It is the worst place for them we have ever been to. But … if you have no other choice and you want to make the trip worthwhile and do a few days fishing just bring lots of insect repellent and burn some coils.
Overall, Wathumba creek is a great spot to visit. Its certainly worth the drive and if you are in need of a feed of fish this is the place to be.
It safe to bring the kids, you can swim here and on low tide you can even chase the Soldier Crabs on the mud flats.