Fishers ready for GAMEX
Anglers across WA are spending their children’s inheritance on new tackle and rehearsing excuses to get away from work ahead of the annual week-long pilgrimage for the State’s premier fishing competition.
GAMEX, to be held in Exmouth from March 11-19, will bring around 300 people to the coastal town.
The competition has grown beyond a WA event, with many competitors travelling from across the country and overseas to wet lines in what was recently rated the sixth best marlin fishery in the world.
Exmouth Game Fishing Club president Jeni Gates said GAMEX 2016 was shaping up as another bumper event.
“Our previous GAMEX event saw some astounding fishing with over 601 billfish tagged and released by competitors, which are catch and release numbers that rival the world’s very best sport and game fishing tournaments,” she said.
“This year has seen the warm summer current arrive quite late off Exmouth, which means the fishing is tipped to really heat up as we move into GAMEX’s mid-March timeslot.”
Gates said with Exmouth’s fishing grounds very close to shore, most competitors fished from small boats for more than 35 different game fish species found in these waters — a userfriendly combination no other game fishing event in Austra- lia offered. Fishing aside, several food, arts and cultural events will also take place during the week, including a concert night at the Potshot Resort, a long table luncheon at Ningaloo Resort, a fancy dress beef and reef barbecue at Exmouth Escape Resort and a free Ningaloo Discovery family fun day.
Exmouth Visitor Centre spokesman Ben Knaggs said accommodation was still avail- able at holiday homes, resorts and lodges and most caravan parks.
Mr Knaggs said the centre’s staff expected the whale shark season would be beginning on the same weekend as the start of GAMEX.
Shire of Exmouth President Turk Shales said the economic benefit from GAMEX was substantial.
“GAMEX is not only a big event in WA,” he said. “With Australian and world records, there is now a growing global interest.
“The media exposure that Exmouth receives as a result of the event and the benefits that provides in terms of visitors throughout the year is clearly a huge boost to the town.”
GAMEX did not run last year after ex-tropical cyclone Olwyn forced the cancellation of the event.
The GAMEX fishing competition will be held in Exmouth between March 11 and 19.