Well we are truly into the depths of winter now with some icy, no make that cyclonic blows over the past weeks that have provided some horrific weather, which in reality has kept the majority of anglers locked up indoors.
When the weather has cleared however we have also experienced some of those perfect calm conditions that make fishing during winter well worth the effort.
Let’s hope that the following weeks continue to produce more good fishing before we slide into September, which is generally regarded as the wet and windy month.
On the upside however September will see the start of snapper season as the keen anglers get out on the water in search of their first reds for the season.
Things took a while to settle down after the huge storms we copped in late June and early July, however when things got back to normal the fish were well and truly rearing to go with plenty of options to be found in and around the area.
Mordialloc Pier has been producing some lovely pinkies late in the evenings on baits of pilchard tails and strips of squid fished on paternoster rigs. While flicking a squid jig over the shallow broken reef that lies on the north side of the pier has seen an endless procession of squid to be taken by anglers, especially late in the afternoons during the calm weather with some of our customers at Fishing Fever finding great success with the ultra light weighted Evergreen 3.5XS jigs, especially in the red base colours in the low light conditions of an evening and the orange colours during the day.
In the creek itself the mullet have been fairly consistent with the local crew getting plenty of fish with baits of dough suspended under tiny floats.
As the coming weeks roll by the squid should really thicken up with excellent numbers to be found in all the shallow reef areas, with the stretch between the Mordialloc Pier and Mentone being a favourite area, especially when you get up on the big shallow reef system known as the Parkdale Pinnacles.
The Beaumaris Pier and its surrounds just keep producing good fishing with everything from squid in big numbers to plenty of pinkies and even a few winter snapper to 6kg. The best news however has been the resurgence of a few garfish with local fishing fanatic Beau getting into the garfish over the past weeks.
Out the front from Ricketts Point to Black Rock now its right in the thick of pinkie season with loads of smaller fish around but enough patched of pinkies to a kilo or so in weight to make it well worth moving around till you find the bigger fish.
As per usual the bigger baits and larger soft plastics are the key to finding the bigger pinkies as it will keep the smaller ones away from the hook till a bigger fish comes by.
Land based reports have been fairly good in this part of the world with pinkies, gars and squid all being found in anglers catches off the Hampton rock groynes. Add to this some of our younger customers have been having a ball on the squid over the past weeks by being much more mobile and working any of the reef patches that are just off the beach at Hampton, and also the perfect rocky shoreline from Green Point through to North Road ramp. The boys are telling us that they are having no dramas getting their bag of 10 squid on most afternoons.
Out wider the Anonyma Shoal has been the place to find a big snook with locals getting them on either baits of garfish or squid strips on gang hooks or small diving minnows like the Tilsan barra or the Rapala X-Rap 10.
Out wider again this month will see some bigger snapper starting to move along the edge of the shipping channel and while they wont be in big numbers they will be solid fish, so if you have a few hours head out there and sound around till you find a fish or two, then anchor up and get the berley cranking on the lead up to a tide change and you just may find yourself with a few 4-6kg snapper for your troubles. For whatever reason August also tends to be a good time to find the odd solid gummy shark out in the same areas and they are a very welcome by-catch when waiting for a snapper.
From North Road to St Kilda it has started to slow down with pinkies being the main target for anglers in the area, and while the reports I have been getting aren’t as consistent, or as many fish as further back at Ricketts Point, the size seems to be quite good with a lot of the pinkies in the 35-45cm, and a lot of these fish are coming in ultra shallow water in the 2-4m depths late in the afternoons, especially when the water is discoloured.
While the reports may slow a bit in this area at this time of the year the fishing has been great with local anglers reporting some great catches of pinkies and even some bigger snapper of Kerford Rd Pier and some of the smaller ones either side of it. The best thing about this area at this time of the year is that it’s the perfect place to head in the prevailing northerly wind as it blows offshore, making the water calm and also helping to get that bit of extra distance in your cast or getting that berley trail to carry out a bit further into the bay. Saying that let’s hope that this month will see the garfish turn up in the area, which they usually do in August.
Further along at Station and Princess piers this month is a great time to have fun chasing some solid trevally that move around the pylons, providing all sorts of entertainment.
Let’s just say hooking them is one thing, landing them is completely different.Reads: 1254