Cool weather doesn’t bother cool anglers
  |  First Published: June 2017

The cooler weather hasn’t deterred those wishing to wet a line either in the surf, sea or estuary, it’s just the southwesterly fronts that regularly pass over us at this time of year. Otherwise the fishing has been simply superb.

The salmon have turned up in droves along our beaches and some excellent fish exceeding 2kg have been caught mainly on squid strips topped off with a pilchard fillet. Double paternoster rigs and introducing a berley into the wash have been the go-to methods. The main beach at Peterborough and Newfield Bay have been hotspots of late.

For those willing to brave the elements there are still plenty of gummy sharks about for surf anglers. The only problem is that one has to fish after dark. A rising tide is the go. Use chunks of eel for bait. Leave the skin on and don’t gut the eel. Let the natural oils seep out and rig the length of eel (4-6”) on a ganged rig and secured with hosiery elastic. This is one tough bait and it will take ages for sea lice and crabs to demolish. Gibsons Steps and the mouth of the Gellibrand River have been hotspots and you can park the car nearby.

The southern bluefin tuna fishery is going along great guns with those launching near Peterborough at Boat Bay having encountered school fish to 18kg just 15km or so offshore in around 60m depth. At this distance the cliff line along the Great Ocean Road is just visible on the horizon.

I’ve been informed by a reliable source that a barrel fish weighing in at approximately 100kg has just been recently caught and weighed in, so that alone is encouraging for boaters thinking of venturing out.

Skirted lures in white, pink and blue along with deep diving Rapala X-Raps in blue and silver patterns have worked well.

The Curdies River has been quite consistent for bream. Keep in mind that the mouth is currently closed, so the fish are spread throughout the system.

The fish are generally schooled up and it’s just a matter of locating one preferably on the chew. The fish are responding to a wide variety of baits and lures. Keep in mind that the fish are still gorging on greyback minnows (whitebait). That particular bait, which can be netted in the shallows in the lake, is the gun bait. Soft plastic users should be using minnow shads with a silver streak for optimum results. Find a school of fish on the chew and you won’t go wrong.

Soon the fish will hang deep due to winter cooling the water down so a vibrating metal lure just lightly skipped across the bottom close to the river bank should see some action. For some unexplained reasoned the prefer dark colours here, so go as close to black as you can with a touch of silver thrown in for good measure.

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