Octoberfest on the Hastings
  |  First Published: October 2007

This month should be a true Octoberfest on the Hastings and Camden Haven rivers after rain gave these systems a welcome flush.

Late Winter and early Spring around here are renowned for gin-clear water in the estuaries but now fishing during the day will be a tad easier.

The estuaries will be the main focus as most anglers enjoy the warmer weather and flathead come out in numbers.

Some big females should be on the move. Bait collection for these big beauties should be getting easy with herring and yellowtail frequenting the jetty areas around town. A bait jig and some bread will get you into the mix.

Live poddy mullet can be easily caught with traps in the back channel behind Pelican Island. First port of call for big flathead this time of the year would be around the Dennis Bridge and don’t be surprised if you tangle with the odd school mulloway, too.

If you’re heading down to Laurieton then anywhere westward of the Dunbogan Bridge you should find some nice lizards. Look for shallow water running into deeper sections; a bit of flow will make all the difference.

Lake Cathie is open to the sea and it’s been like a popular trout pool in New Zealand, shoulder-to-shoulder fishing and everyone taking home a feed. Luderick have been the primary target and the numbers have been amazing. At times there have been around 50 anglers lined up, all catching fish.

I’d question some of the needs of some anglers to be there every day of the week to take home their bag limit.

This month the whiting will also be on the chew and I’m sure we’ll see similar action and numbers of anglers lining up to get their hands on some tasty Lake Cathie whiting. Live worms will be the gun bait while yabbies and fresh prawns will also be successful.


Rockhoppers and beach fishos have had mixed outings, with some days not a wave breaking and then huge swells making life difficult; there seems to be very little middle ground.

Some good tailor have been caught with the odd greenback keeping anglers coming back. Big bream are still being caught off the beaches with whole pilchards working well.

This month whiting should be landed off the beaches and the salmon run will continue. The madmen have been chasing salmon from the beaches on calm days with bream gear. They give one hell of a fight and these guys are having a ball.

Those venturing to the deep blue recently have had some glorious weather with flat seas and magic conditions. The number of small craft heading out is amazing and the fishing has been good, with snapper on plastics still all the rage.

The reefs in close have been producing good fish although the numbers are dropping from a few months ago. Live baits and some good berley will also get you into the action although you’ll be more likely to get the school-size fish.

Best options this month will be the inshore reefs off Laurieton and to the north around Point Plomer. Leatherjackets have been plaguing those going further offshore but with persistence some nice pearl perch have been landed.

Email me if you’re visiting and let me know of your experiences and successes.

October on the Hastings River will be bream central with the Sundowner BREAM Classic on October 27 and 28. The Classic has gone national with teams entering from NSW, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia and we could well see a team from Tasmania.

If you’d like to witness some of the country’s top bream anglers, get along to the starts at 6.30am and the weigh-in at 1.30pm each day. The weigh-ins are sure to be entertaining with plenty of giveaways for the crowd and you’ll get all the tips from the anglers on how to catch bream on lures.

If you’d like to enter then it’s not too late, give me a call on 0401 191 554 or email --e-mail address hidden-- .

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