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Bay and offshore are firing up
  |  First Published: October 2013



I’m not one for Sydney’s Winter weather – I must have tropical blood – so I always welcome October for its warmer starts and balmy days.

With the warmer weather on the way it’s time to wet a line so gear up and head out for the day.

Snapper and morwong are at their best in October and November and I weekly head out for a reef session. If the forecast wind is from the north, that’s where I head – and vice-versa.

South to the Humps and surrounding areas is good 40-minute trip from Port Hacking and should not be attempted in winds over 15 knots.

All the reefs I fish in both areas produce well but don`t go looking for large, high structure: it’s low rock all over the place so drifting works well although I do well at times dropping the anchor once I’ve found fish.

I use the simple dropper or paternoster rig for best results.

As always, along with squid the blue pilchard is my top bait but the big problem with pilchards at times is that they can be very soft. So try salting down your pilchards to toughen them up and they will stay on the hook much better.

Other baits like tuna, salmon strips and slimy mackerel are all good but need salting as well unless they are caught fresh that day.

SALMON, FLATHEAD

Salmon are showing along the coast in large schools and provide great sport on light spinning gear and small metal lures, small trolling skirts and minnows.

Salmon are not the world’s best eating fish but if bled, iced down and eaten fresh, I like them.

Back in Botany Bay it’s prime time now to target flathead.

Yes, the water will remain quite cool for some time yet but the flathead will start to school in many areas.

I have found 3m-5m is a very productive depth at this time of the year and good fish are about for the anglers keen to work plastics. The evergreen Squidgy Wriggler in bloodworm is a favourite and has helped my clients land some great fish over the years.

There’s been a red-hot run of luderick in the Hacking River and working the run-out tides has provided us with great fishing.

The Hacking is a great little system with many spots to hide from the wind and blackfish on light tackle are hard to beat.

I find a spot along the shoreline with good structure and a deep edge with tidal movement and anchor fore and aft to sit side on to the tidal flow. Just make sure you aren’t blocking any channels when you do this.

I like having everything all set and ready to go at the top of the tide, ready for the run out to start.

You need a good berley mix so check out The Hook and the Cook you tube channel, where I have a small clip on making up this mix and some rigs.

Luderick can be found in all Sydney’s waterways and are worth thinking about over the next few months.

They are plentiful, fight hard and are great on the table if looked after.

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