At the mercy of wind and weather
  |  First Published: September 2003

THIS TIME of year on this part of the coast we are directed by wind and weather patterns which show us what and where we should target our fishing and boating enjoyment.

Fishing at best can be a dicey situation. The cost of fuel and money spent to pursue fish is remarkable and many non-anglers don’t understand the addiction and adrenaline you feel when line’s peeling off your reel. They think it’s far more sensible to buy their fish – it’s a lot cheaper than tying up all that money in boats and gear. Travelling remarkable distances to catch one type of fish just seems ridiculous to them.

But most really keen anglers don’t even think about the costs when they’re in the mood to go and fish – they just do it, and if they catch one good fish, most are satisfied. It may have cost $100 to go to your favourite reef and if you put a dollar value on the fish you bring home, it will never add up to the money you have outlaid.

There is no real measure of cost when you enjoy something so vividly. Any diehard angler will tell you it’s just an excellent pastime and the fish are really a bonus.

This month the diehards will be rugged up and chasing fish on the close reefs. Snapper and large squire have turned up around the reefs off Newcastle in past weeks and if you can handle the chill factor, an early-morning run to the Merewether or Bar Beach reefs will be worth your while.

A few snapper around 3kg to 4kg have been taken and a lot of squire have been caught around the extensive reefs around the North Reef buoy. The trevally have moved in and salmon are everywhere this month the squid are thick on the reefs also, so don’t forget a squid jig.


The rivers are all flowing again, thanks to the amount of rain we have had over the past two months. The Williams, Hunter and Patterson rivers are giving up good catches of bass. A few keen freshwater blokes reckon the bass are holding high on the Williams, up around Clarencetown to Dungog, when the usual run of fish are more prone to be around Seaham at this time of year.

This is a great time to check out all your gear, from the line on your reels to the grease in the wheel bearings on your trailer and everything in between. Spring is fast approaching and a laid-up boat trailer and malfunctioning gear can let you down at the worst time. A few hours and dollars spent on safety and reliability go a long way.

They may be a menace and no good on the plate but when carp come this big, they sure can fight. They’re a great fish to start the kids on. Small hooks and some sweet corn kernels are all you need.

No 2,

The rivers have risen so much lately that canoes can enter backwaters that were dry over the drought. Causeways such as this fish well on the downside for bass from now until Christmas.

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