Wintertime is surf time at Robe
  |  First Published: July 2012

A huge number of Wimmera anglers such as myself absolutely love fishing the south east of South Australia as these lightly fished and productive waters are within an easy few hours drive of my hometown of Horsham.

The south east of SA has something to offer for most fishos whether you are into estuary, surf or offshore fishing. Cray fishing in the warmer months also is hugely popular over here as well and is something I will cover in detail in coming reports.


There are many great surf fishing beaches around the popular tourist town of Robe that fish well this time of year for big Australian salmon, gummy shark, elephant fish and a few school mulloway will be about as well. To the south of Robe in the Little Dip area there are some very productive beaches which include Bishops Pate, Boundary Beach, Domashenz Beach and the best salmon beach in the area, Back Beach. Big mulloway are always a chance at any time of year at these beaches and some big gummies and seven-gill sharks are caught here at times as well.

Long Beach right at Robe has been fishing well for elephant fish and salmon in the evenings and some very productive spots can be found about half way along the beach toward Boatswain Point. A simple berley of chook pellets soaked in tuna oil will bring the salmon on the chew here at the moment.

The beauty about surf fishing around here is you can drive along the beaches, which makes things so easy. I find the best fishing along the beaches here is in the late afternoons, evenings and after dark with fishing two hours either side of a tide change the way to go.

A little berley and baits such as fresh salmon or mullet fillet, pilchards, squid or octopus fished on a paternoster rig will see you in the running for taking for some great fish off the beaches here. I often use a surf popper in conjunction to the baits and find they work very well at times.

The marinas at Robe and Cape Jaffa also offer some great fishing this time of year and are great safe spots to take the kids to catch a fish or two. Unweighted baits such as cockle or pilchard fillets fished around the pylons can produce good catches of bream, silver trevally, mullet and salmon as will casting vibes and soft plastics around. School mulloway are also a real possibility here.

Offshore angling

We are enjoying a great tuna season this year with a lot of southern bluefin tuna in the 15-25kg size range being caught, mostly from the very popular port of Port MacDonnell. Amongst the bluefin have also been a few albacore, striped tuna and the occasional mahi mahi. Trolling lures such as Rapala X rap 20s, Killer Vibes and Pakula Jets has been working well.

It has been a very different season to the previous three with not as many big barrels in the 70-100kg size range being caught but there is always the chance. Many days the fishing has been very patchy too with many crews not turning a reel for many kilometres covered.

Coorong beaches

The big salmon have showed up in excellent numbers from the 28 mile crossing up to Ti Tree. The best track to drive in has been at the 42 mile crossing as Ti Tree is now closed. Take care driving along the beach though as some parts of the track often get washed out this time of year.

The salmon have been averaging around 1.5kg but have been up to 4kg. A few gummy sharks and many elephant fish are also being caught. The occasional school mulloway has also been caught up to around 80cm. The best baits have been fresh squid, pilchards and surf poppers have also been working well. The best fishing has been a couple hours either side of a tide change. If you come across any bad weed patches just keep driving until you find an area without it as it can really make things difficult along here.


The Glenelg river has been fishing very well for estuary perch and bream lately with some real thumpers to well over 40cm being taken mostly upstream of Skipworth Springs. Casting 3” Berkley Power minnows at the snags and rocks has been the way to go with some excellent catches being made. Bait anglers are also catching a number of bream right throughout the river with standout baits being small yabbies, podworm and crab.

Small bream have been about in huge numbers though. Mulloway have been patchy but toward the estuary section a few around the 4kg mark have been taken on squid strips and pilchards fished unweighted or live mullet under a float has also been good, particularly after dark.

The good fishing should continue here until we get some winter rains, which will probably heavily discolour the water as it did last year. The Horsham Angling club have their annual trip to Nelson soon, so I will have heaps more to report on this area next month, so stay tuned.

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