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Towra, Towra, Towra!
  |  First Published: December 2014



Towra is a vast expanse of coastline that stretches from the northern tip of Woolooware Bay to the westernmost point of Silver Beach, which is also known as Bonna Point. The reason why this area has been chosen and highlighted is because during the past 40 years or so I have found this time of year to be the provider of excellent catches of most estuarine species.

Towra Point and its surrounding waters are looked upon as the nursery of Botany Bay, as it is also graced with an abundance of ribbon weed beds, probably the last reasonable stands of mangroves, and a number of well-defined deeper sections.

I’ve listed below a number of possies that have produced well for most species:

Towra Deep: 150m south of the red channel marker, right out in the middle of the entrance to the Georges River. This area is mussel beds and can be fished both tides by day.

Towra Wide: In line with Towra Deep and directly behind the red channel markers, 300m wide of Towra Point itself. It’s best on the last 3 hours of the runout tide by day.

The Patches: About 400m out in 4-5m of water. Patches of sand and weed dot the area where the eastern side of Towra Beach meets the mangroves.

Elephants Trunk: Best at night and mostly fished from shallow draft boats. Accessible from half tide up, approximately 600m south of the Towra Point boat moorings.

Pelican Point: A great dropoff, which can be productive for school mulloway. A deep hole 60m out from some old oyster leases produces all species.

The Leases: When bad weather blows up, this is an area in the lee of Towra that still produces fish. The remnants of old oysters leases still harbour numerous big bream and flathead. If fishing this area, I would suggest heavier tackle, as the terrain is very rough. It is best to fish the big falling tides with bloodworms early morning or evening.

Although not many fishos bother, prawning can be a rewarding experience. The prawns are mostly kings and this is the time of year to go after them. A good spot to use a drag net if you have access to a small boat is Towra Beach itself on a making tide. This area has clean white sand and is free from snags that often foul up the net.

Other areas to try include Douglas Flats between St George Sailing Club and Moylan’s Hotel, Woolooware Bay on the eastern shore, Kogarah Bay at the northern end, The Flats opposite St George Motor Boat Club, Carrs Park open baths, and in the upper reaches, Cattle Duffers Flats and Burrawang in the Georges River State Recreation Area. By far the best possie is Coolum Beach, opposite Fitzpatrick Park at Picnic Point.

Best times for prawning are two nights prior to the new moon and the three days following, the outgoing tide being the most successful. On other occasions, during a fresh can also be productive.

AROUND THE BAY

Fishing in the bay has improved, as is expected for the time of year. The water temperature is steady at around the 20° mark, which has created stability in the feeding patterns. The lower reaches have been swarming with schools of tailor and salmon, with Halco slices and 7cm Rapala Magnums in the Blue Mackerel pattern doing the damage. Between Bare Island to Cape Banks along the Port Botany container wall, and on the south side of the bay between Tabbigai and Inscription Point, have been the pick of the spots. Just follow the feeding birds; this is usually a good guideline.

Dusky flathead have been boated in Yarra Bay, the airport to Towra drift, and from the Kurnell Oil Wharf to the entrance to Quibray Bay. Hawkesbury prawns and large whitebait are the best enticers.

Class bream to 40cm have been found in shallow sand and weed corridors, The Patches off Towra, The Groynes at Silver Beach and Monterey, the area in front of the San Souci Sailing Club, and the entrance to the Woronora River.

Whiting catches are down a shade, no doubt about it, and the lack of bloodworms is a contributing factor. Those in the know have been catching good fish at night from the Caravan Head Channels, the cockle beds at Conners Point, the small beach at La Perouse, and land based at the end of Forest Road in Lugarno.

Mulloway have been steady, biting mainly at the bridges in the system during the full moon period, however, the odd larger specimen to 20kg has been landed in the deeper holes upstream of Alfords Point Bridge at night on live poddy mullet.

The lack of live bait is of major concern; I’ve received many phone calls asking where livies can be found. The usual spots like the Cooks River breakwall, the tugs area near the cove, Bumborah Point and Watts Reef have failed, but I’m told that the artificial reefs in Yarra Bay have an ample supply. Don’t forget to berley heavily if you want results.

WHAT’S COMING UP

January is one of the better months of the calendar and you should have no trouble getting a feed from the following spots if fished correctly.

In the Georges River, try Kangaroo Point 100 metres out from the pine tree during the early morning on a making tide. This spot produces mulloway, bream and flathead, on nippers and strips of fresh squid. Connels Point is easily identified by its large sloping rock; I like fishing here during the outgoing tide at first light for big whiting using live bloodworms.

Caravan Head Channel is a good option, but leave it for during the week, as weekend traffic can be a nuisance. Move wider into the channel with the tide movement. The northern end of Como Bridge has been a long favourite of mine for school mulloway. I have caught fish to 7kg on the bottom of the tide on squid strips. Gungah Point can be rewarding during the runout tide, but a bit slow if chasing school-sized fish — patience will be rewarded though. Jewfish Point can be a dynamite possie during the runout tide. The bottom is a mussel bed and gear losses can be expected. Fish with a long trace to suit the run and use live poddy mullet or yellowtail.

In the bay, I expect Molineaux Point to come good for kings. Number 156 or 157 on the wall are the marks I use and fresh Hawkesbury squid for bait is superb. The Cans out in the middle will also produce kings, but not as big as Shaky on the northern peninsula — specimens to 20kg can be caught downrigging live squid close to the cliff faces.

You’ll also find kingfish in unexpected places, such as between the old trawlers moored above the Cooks River and Princes Highway bridges, the yellow markers that indicate exclusions zones near the runways, and the red channel marker wide off Ramsgate.

Bream will be found on the gravel bottom in 5-6m of water, with Barton Street Reef, Eric’s Reef in the middle of the bay, Watts Reef and The Sticks likely providers. Stud whiting will be available 300m north of the boat ramp at Kurnell, along the Silver Beach stretch at Kurnell, Taylor Bar bunker, Primrose House and the cockle bed of Lecombe in front of the Novotel.

I expect duskies to be on the chew wide of the two runways, the deep water between The Cans and the Kurnell Oil Wharf, the drift between Watts Reef and Sutherland Point, and the drift between the yellow bunker off Ramsgate and Quibray Bay.

All in all, I’m very excited about the fishing prospects and expect excellent reports to be channelled through to you next edition.

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This lure caught-trevally was picked up at Port Hacking.

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Another nice snapper caught off Bellambi.

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There’s plenty of bream around the Harbour at the moment.

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