FISHING: John Cooper takes out top gong
FISHING is in John Cooper's blood and after at least 20 years of trying the Nymboida angler finally took out The Daily Examiner Fish of the Year Competition.
His 360g whiting caught at Red Cliff just before Christmas was randomly drawn from all anglers who weighed a fish in 2014.
"I've been fishing for it for a while," the Coutts Crossing Fishing Club member said. "I always tell my kids to weigh in a fish. It doesn't have to be the biggest. Now it's proof."
Thursday's DEX is a must in the Cooper household. They regularly consult Dick Richards' Gone Fishing column to map out plans for their fishing adventures.
"I fish throughout the system from Ebor to the coast. You can't be everywhere at once, so we find out what's happening to plan our trip," he said.
Cooper's son, Jed, won the 2013 Biggest Whiting of the Year while other son Shea features this week with a 1.1kg bream landed at Minnie Water.
"Shea helped me choose the lures,'' Cooper said.
"The main selection was a Daiwa Aird rock and beach rod and reel combo worth $260 that I'm hoping to catch a big jewfish with."
The readership of today's DEX is guaranteed to extend beyond the confines of the Clarence Valley.
"My partner Hilde sends the paper back to Belgium whenever we appear in the fishing pages," Cooper said.
"So it will be getting read in Belgium in a couple of weeks' time."