Mulloway magic on the Macquarie Coast
  |  First Published: July 2016

We’ve hit the halfway point for another year and while the air temperatures may be down there are still a heap of available fishing options to choose from. Let’s put on our appropriate winter clothing and take a look at what’s on offer.


Plenty to keep you keen here at the moment with both the Hastings and the Camden Haven waterways producing bream along the rock walls and in a few of the deeper holes. Vibration blades, soft vibes and deep worked plastics will get you into the action – just be aware the leatherjackets are on the walls in the Hastings and they love plastics! I lean towards the vibes when they are around as it is easy to lose a packet of plastics pretty quickly on the jackets. For the shore-based bait anglers the bream will take a lightly weighted whitebait or a live nipper, and you can definitely tell when the bream are around as all the regulars gather on the wall of an evening for their bream fix. Try to get to the walls an hour before the high tide for an attempt at the bream there and fish the top and the start of the run-out.

July is a good month to chase mulloway in the river and the Hastings and Camden Haven rivers will throw up some big girls this month. Night forays are the go, and fishing from a boat will give you some great advantages. Anchor along the coal wall in the Hastings and live bait with mullet, tailor or herring to connect with a silver slab. You can also use fillets of fresh tailor and mullet as sometimes this will work better than livies. On my boat I like to have a live bait on one rod and a slab bait on another. Don’t dismiss casting around a hardbodied mulloway lure while you wait for a run on one of your bait rods. This can certainly get interesting when you hook-up and have two lines out anchored. Have a fishing companion on board to assist. For daytime anglers mulloway will be present in most of the deeper holes in the river systems and we use lures to catch them in this situation. Samaki Soft Vibes 100mm have been excellent, and a mix of 4-7” plastics will do the job also. Some of note that have worked well recently for me are the Dragon Maggots, the 5” Flash Js and the new 5” Bomb Shad from Boom Baits – the tail action is a winner on these. Good luck and remember persistence produces!

The luderick scene is alive and well with the rocks and the rivers producing. I’m still amazed to see the old blackfish crew all out and fishing with their weed flies. For these tasty critters try the bend on the south wall near the police station. The town jetty and also Settlement Point Road are two other noted spots to watch a float.

Flathead become a little less active when the cooler water appears, yes we can still catch them but a change of tactics is in order. Firstly, I tend to slow down the retrieve more than usual and secondly, I use bigger curl-tails as they don’t have to be worked that hard and the tail action is always pulsating with the slightest of tidal movement. Even dead sticking can get results with curly grubs.


If the sand is your go June is a great time for salmon and Lighthouse, Cathie and North beaches have a fair few around. Pilchards on ganged hooks have been getting results and there have been a few nice tailor in catches as well. Fish the run-up on dark or first light in the morning for consistent results. Another great way to enjoy a few hours when the salmon are there is to flick around a 4-5” soft plastic. The Squidgy slick rigs are great for this type of fishing, as they are already rigged with weight and it’s just a matter of tying one on and casting and retrieving into the likely holes and gutters you find.


I haven’t had any chance to get out myself lately but the word is there have been some nice reds on the Laurieton grounds in depths of 15-40m. Not a lot of bigger fish have been found, but who doesn’t like reds at 2-4 kg? The Cathie grounds have been patchy. If you make a good catch, email me a picture so we can put it in the mag.

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