I’m happy to report that this summer season is shaping up to be fantastic. There have been some great fish taken over the past couple of months and it doesn’t look like changing.
Whiting are showing up on the beaches, and some nice size bream and flathead are sitting just beyond the waves. And since the weather has been so good, I can’t think of anything else I’d rather do than spend a week or weekend searching the gutters and holes for fish along a stretch of beach.
One thing about beach fishing is it doesn’t cost a fortune, as most bait can be found on the spot you are fishing. Worms, pipis, just legal tailor and whiting all make great bait. Most beaches allow you to have a small pit fire so cooking is cheap as well. An old frying pan will do the job.
Afternoons or early mornings before the wind gets up are the best two times. Alternatively, fish at the change of tides, especially the high tide change. Mulloway, sharks and big tailor will come in and hunt through the close deep water at this time.
On nearly all beaches you will need a 4WD permit but they aren’t that expensive, and obviously they’re are a better option than a hefty fine!
Rock fishing is picking up with some nice bream, tailor and squire being taken. Squid are being caught in the quiet corners and there have been some big green-eyed models coming in. The fresh tentacles are excellent bream and snapper baits, and they stick to the hook like glue, making it hard for the small pickers to tear them off.
Rat kingfish have been coming along the ledges feeding, and 2-3” chrome lures thrown off the stones where there’s some depth in the water will get you some.
Watson’s bonito have been taken off the back of the Merewether Baths. I love watching these fish dance as they come in. Normal bonito are also in good numbers in the schools.
The hood tailor, some around 3kg, have been along most rock ledges in the evenings as well. In my book there’s nothing better than watching two or three hungry tailor chase a lure back to your feet.
The fishing is picking up dramatically offshore. Cobia, kingfish and mahi mahi are all out wide, and small black marlin have moved into the frenzy as well. I predict a good pelagic season ahead.
On the reefs some nice snapper, nannygai, teraglin and morwong (mostly red ones) are schooled over the local reefs. Small kingfish are under the North Reef buoy and are taking flies and small lures cast to the edges of it. Use decent line because the numbers of fish that snap you off are unbelievable, and snapped off line likes to float up and wrap around props. It’s one of the worst things that can happen offshore. I have had to jump into the water over the shelf when I was young with a snorkel and goggles, untangling small diameter rope. The feeling of being shark bait is so intense that you know how the yellowtail must feel as they’re rounded into a ball as big fish hound them. It’s something I never want to experience again!
This month I recommend fishing the washes for snapper, morwong, bream, tailor and kingfish, or you can head offshore for the outer reefs and hang on, because some big fish have been coming in. And don’t forget the crab pots because blue swimmers should be around now as well.Reads: 598