Tuross saves the day
  |  First Published: September 2011

Like everywhere else along the South Coast, Narooma has copped a flogging with huge seas, wind and heaps of rain. This type of weather isn't ideal for fishing but there are still options available.

The Tuross River, just north of Narooma, has been fishing well and this is one system that generally still produces even when conditions don't suit.

Flathead and bream can be found but with the increased fresh in the system, the deeper sections are the place to fish.

By deep I mean 3m and more – Tuross is a very shallow system.

Most of this deeper water is found in the lower sections of the lake, with the entrance to the main basin a good place to start.

For flathead I'd be using bigger soft plastics, around 100mm, in natural colours and I’d fish them extremely slowly. This will be a key to getting good results, the slower the action the better with fish to 90cm on the cards.

Last September this system produced some thumping big lizards and in good numbers so let's hope this season is the same.

Those after bream should be able to get a few on blades in the deeper holes towards the entrance, concentrating in depths of 6m to 8m.

The main basin will have a few around the shallower margins on hard-bods; there's always a fish or two available there after a fresh.

If mulloway are your caper I've heard of some nice ones being caught on bait although casting larger plastics under the bait schools may reap rewards.

With the entrance open, salmon and tailor are entering the system at will and can turn up anytime.


Wagonga Inlet is still full of big salmon. They have been there for months and while the bait is there, they will be. The fish can turn up at any time; the birds are usually a dead give-away to their location. From the powerlines upstream seems to be their favourite haunt.

They can become quite fickle and hard to catch. It can be frustrating when you see loads of fish and they won't bite.

I'll take the bream approach and downsize everything, including leader strength. It may seem silly doing that but when a slow session becomes a fish-a-cast session, it's certainly worthwhile, even if you lose a few due to the lighter tackle.

Mixed in with the salmon have been some mulloway from 1.5kg to 3kg, a pleasant surprise I must say and if you targeted a bigger opponent with the right gear you might just be in luck. There have been some sizable arches on the sounder when I've fished there.

Those after flatties have done it tough but this month the bigger girls will get mobile.

Bigger soft plastics fished slowly around the ribbon weed edges in 6m to 8m should turn a fish or two. As we head further into Spring, expect the flathead to get better.


Offshore comes to a standstill every few days with the way the weather has been but before the latest blow it was exceptional with heaps of southern bluefin tuna and yellowfin numbers increasing.

Local game skipper Peter Davies had a cracking session, christening his new 40-footer with a brace of nice yellowfin on cubes. These fish were wide, well past the Second Drop, but that's where the good water was.

The boys got a 50kg fish on the first cube drop – not a bad way to open your account on a new boat. They got five fish to 60kg and left them biting.

The snapper fishing should be awesome after all the ordinary weather. Most times after a decent blow they bite well.

I'd be fishing Potato Point or the gravel patches on the south-western side of Montague Island in 20-odd metres.

There's the chance of kingfish, too – there were sporadic catches of fish before the blow. A lot will depend on current but if it's pushing south, dust off the jig sticks and get out there.

Those fishing the beaches have found it hard due to the monster swells but when the sea dies back there have been salmon, tailor and bream, with a good chance at a mulloway also.

The jewies don't mind the rougher conditions and dirtier water so they’re definitely worth a look.

Best beach to try would be Tilba, or Blackfellows, just south of the Tuross Lake entrance. Baits include salmon fillets, pilchards and bunches of live beach worms.


Those after a feed off the rocks will have little trouble getting some fillets for the pan.

All the usual suspects will chew, especially after the rough stuff, with blackfish, drummer, bream and some decent snapper all likely targets.

Dalmeny Headland, just north of Narooma, fishes well after swell and Mystery Bay to the south is also worth a look. This ledge holds some good snapper, especially at the southern end. Fresh pilchards or squid should do the trick.

There will be countless salmon on the wash zones and again ganged pilchards will suffice.

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