Snapper in their prime
  |  First Published: July 2013

The cooler months definitely provide some exciting fishing on the outside grounds. This is the time of year to get that snapper of a lifetime on the reefs wide off the Northern Beaches.

The wide deep grounds such as Jurassic Park, Esmeralda, Broken Bay Wide and Narrabeen Wide are all holding big fish and should do so for the next couple of months.

Several top local fishos have taken quality snapper up to 8kg and there have been plenty around 4kg-5kg.

These prime fish require a great deal of skill to catch and always react to the freshest of baits, such as large local squid, slimy mackerel and bonito fillets.

Lindsay Reaney says that 2-3 blocks of pilchards as berley is the minimum requirement to attract them.

There are also a number of monster kingfish to be had and The Whale, Dee Why Wreck, Long Reef Wide and Newport Reef have all held kingies lately. We have weighed in fish of 13kg and 17kg lately, both taken on squid baits floated down berley trails.

Trolling lures such as Rapala Magnums and Halco Crazy Deep Laser Pros have accounted for king fish and mack tuna around New Reef, Lion Island and in close to Avalon Headland.

Mona Vale and Dee Why headlands are producing mack tuna and some bonito in close to the wash.

For those chasing a feed of flathead, they are still around, especially on the drifts off Narrabeen, Mona Vale and Palm Beach in 100’-150’. The best catches have been taken on mullet strips, WA pilchards and slimy mackerel fillets.

Mixed with the flathead have been some nice-size morwong and the odd snapper around a kilo.

The deep wide grounds are holding blue-eye cod and some big gemfish, with Browns Mountain the pick of the spots.

There have been several reports of small to medium yellowfin tuna on the mile Twelve Mile Reef and out at Broken Bay wide. The tuna are taking trolled minnow lures or 6”-8” skirts.


The big Winter bream have shown up on most beaches over the past few weeks and they are responding well to Hawkesbury prawns, mullet strips and worms.

Best spots have been North Narrabeen near the rock pool, Avalon Beach at the southern end, Mona Vale Basin and Palm Beach.

These fish are worth chasing; they are of good size, in healthy numbers and provide a great meal.

There have been several thumper whiting around a kilo and these are delicious eating. They are interested only in beach worms and have been active around Dee Why and Narrabeen beaches.

There have also been a couple of catches of mulloway recently. Two we know of weighed more than 10kg and were taken at North Narrabeen near the lake entrance.

These jewies are on the beaches all through Winter so don’t give up on them just because it is cool. They respond well to mullet or squid so use big baits for best results.

Narrabeen Lake has plenty of quality luderick and I have accounted for several bags of up to 10 quality fish.

The southern side of the Ocean Street bridge is very consistent. Use local green weed and you must also berley well for good results.

Other spots to try for luderick are the bridge area at Narrabeen, the boatshed and the end of Wimbledon Avenue.

Several good-sized flathead have been landed at Jamieson Park and off Wakehurst Parkway on mullet strips and Hawkesbury prawns.

Some big long tom are also active in the lake and they provide great sport on light tackle.

There are also a few big tailor lurking around the Ocean Street bridge and taking WA pilchards.

Don’t forget our beginner to intermediate classes at the shop and at the lake and the beach, book by calling 9970 6204.



Jamieson Park – flathead

Long Reef close – snapper

Newport Reef – big kingfish


Live worms – salmon, bream

Whole local squid – kingfish, snapper

Striped tuna – snapper, tailor, bream

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