Getting into the reds
  |  First Published: August 2014

We’ve got plenty of cold going on now as the Sydney winter really gets down to business. While these colder conditions are with us you have to change it up and target more of the cooler water species that are gracing our shores.

Although our salmon season is only a fraction of what it used to be we’ll still get plenty of them around this month and it’s a great time to go spinning off the rocks and beaches. In our bays and off the coast these next three months will bring some rather flat seas, which should make most fishing platforms quite safe to work from.

Tailor are another solid winter species for us to target and are often caught as salmon bycatch. A late afternoon spin with some metals finished off with a float fish into the dusk is a particularly popular method used around the rocks to target these visiting greenbacks. Be sure to secure your pilchard baits on some solid gang hooks of at least the 3/0 size, as hooking one of these larger fish will feel like you have a frenzied dog on a chain.

The winter trevally have moved in now and can be targeted using a variety of methods which mainly involve the use of berley. The super clear visibility enables some of the flightier species to see you long before you see them, so use lighter fluorocarbon line with unweighted baits and light rods for some terrific action in the boat. While off the stones you can generally fish a bit heavier from the suds to the bottom, as the wash will provide some extra cover.

Some good size snapper have been caught in and around our local inshore reefs. Hooked & Hunted’s Joe Emmerton has been one such angler getting into the reds using soft plastics quite successfully in these clear waters. Long Reef Pirate Crew’s Mike Bonnici landed his PB snapper recently, with his fish going a whopping 91cm and pulling the scales down to 8kg. Mike was bait fishing at night at Long Reef. If previous years are anything to go by, these fish will be around until about November with most of the larger fish caught at night, so big baits and a 30lb+ line class are normally required while drifting baits down the trail.

Our northern beaches still have whiting and bream for beach fishos but you will need to fish the run-up high tides and use a variety of baits from nippers and beachworms to squid strips, and some of the soft plastic baits available like the Gulp and Isome worms which are quite popular. This month will see some of the big bluenose bream pop their heads up and some of the winter elbow-slapper whiting that frequent our beaches.

The launch of Sydney’s latest charter business happened recently with Vic Levett starting up OceanHunter Sportfishing, based out of Sydney Harbour. With some very experienced skippers at the helm these guys will put you onto all sorts of fish from kings to marlin and tuna. The boat is an Oceanmax 24, full walkaround centre console model which was chosen with these species in mind. In the short time the business has been up and running these blokes have already nailed some cracker fish, including meterey kings in the middle of winter. You can go to their Facebook page (OceanHunter Sportsfishing), visit www.oceansportsfishing.com.au or give Vic a call on 0414 906 569 and these guys can even provide you a window of dates to fish so you won’t need to get a full crew together.

If you’d like to know more drop into Fishouttawater and see the guys or myself and we’ll be happy to be a part of getting you into that fish of a lifetime.

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