Summer lovin’
  |  First Published: December 2012

We are now in the thick of it. Summer has really shown its true colours and this new year is set to be a cracker! For those that have been fortunate enough to score some great angling presents over the festive season, there is no better time to test them out now the fishing is hot.

Early summer we were greeted by some stormy humid days with weather patterns that have not been experienced for many years. Despite this weather kaleidoscope, the fishing activity has been extraordinarily good as increased water temperatures have brought about bait activity bringing bigger predators to our waters.

Flathead numbers have been outstanding of late with estuary fishers having no trouble filling their bag. Bait anglers have scored good catches with thin mullet strips, whitebait and half pilchards being the seasoned favourite. Soft plastics have also reaped many a reward with larger styles doing the deed as flathead’s mouths have shown no mercy regardless of their size.

Key spots producing good catches have been the mouths of Ningi and Coochin creeks, Woorim and Tiger Rocks at the mouth of the Pumicestone Passage. Further south the lower reaches of the Pine River around the mouth of Bald Hills Creek and Hornibrook Bridge have produced good lizards with Clontarf foreshore also being a good point of interest. Successful plastics have been 3 3/4” Atomic Plazo Jerk Minnows, 5” Z-Man Streakz, 3” Atomic Plazo Fat Grubs and 3” Gulp Minnows.

Sand Whiting have increased in numbers throughout the summer as many corners of the bay are producing reasonable numbers. Pumicestone Passage would be the best of the areas in the Northern Bay with Red Beach around to Skirmish Point being the noted hotspot. The mouth of Elimbah Creek is also worth a try.

Margate Beach has attracted the usual procession of anglers chasing a bag of summeries this time of year with the incoming tide bringing most success. Bloodworms are still the number one bait with some budget conscience anglers resorting to squid strips and tentacles with mixed results.

Sand crabs are being caught in good numbers throughout the bay this summer with pots scattered everywhere you look. Definitely worth a try are Bramble and Deception Bay as they have been the most productive of late with keen crabber’s also trying their luck throughout the Pumicestone Passage.

For estuary anglers, muddies have also been on the menu up the Pine and Caboolture rivers, Ningi and Coochin creeks, with trusty Cabbage Tree Creek also producing a few. So next time you buzz up the local creek for a fish, drop a pot or two, you may be pleasantly surprised.

As the mercury has been rising throughout the start of the new year, so has the bream activity in many corners of the Northern Bay. Redcliffe Peninsula has been the pick of the areas with anglers producing good fish on hardbody lures and soft plastics.

North Reef and Queens Beach has produced constant bream around the 28cm fork length with bigger specimens rearing their ugly heads more often at dawn and dusk. Lures of success are Atomic Crank 38, Ecogear CX35HS, Jackall Chubbies, Atomic Shiner 45, Pontoon Crack Jack 48, Cranka Crank Deep and Atomic Semi Hardz 40. Surface bites have also been on fire with anglers choice being Bassday Sugarpen, OSP Bent Minnows and Megabass Baby Pop X.

Light and shorter leaders have breed victory in this frustrating technique as intermittent hook up rates can leave anglers gasping for words. A shorter leader around 1-2ft keeps the angler in closer touch with the lure so when a strike is imminent, hooks can be set into the fish faster.

Reports of the prized mangrove jack being caught around our creeks have been filtering through with fishos taking advantage of our hot humid weather to tame these toothy brawlers. Upper reaches of the Caboolture River, Coochin Creek, Upper Pine River and Pelican Waters canals have drawn many successes with eager anglers even resorting to night times to pursue these rewarding fighters. Live baiting has yielded good results with soft plastics like Z-Man 6” Swimmerz and 4” Atomic Prongs accounting for numbers as well.

As we say good bye to 2012 and welcome the new year, it’s also a great time to clean out our tackle boxes and start fresh for the new season. We are all guilty of having odd bits of line, rusty hooks, bent trebles and even dried soft plastics littering our tackle boxes where it’s worth taking a little time out have a clean out and prevent corrosion eating away at your investment. Washing lures, pliers, scissors and even hooks in fresh water after each outing is a great habit to fall into and also limiting plastic packaging from swivels and sinkers ensures your boat and our environment stays a clean and healthy one. Who knows you may even find room for more tackle to buy!

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