AT THE time of writing the water at the ‘Pin is very clear, and the better fishing seems to be from around half tide downwards, and then for around the first two hours of run-up tide. Unless some seriously heavy rain falls this month, conditions will stay much the same and the best fishing will continue to be towards the low tide end of the cycle.
Early starts are the way to go. During the last month I've made three trips to the Jumpinpin in which I’ve been on the water at first light. These early starts were rewarded by the sight of schools of tailor chopping quite nicely, with clouds of birds overhead until the light became too strong. The fish - feeding anywhere between Short Island and Kalinga Bank down to the bar - responded very well to Raiders retrieved through their midst, as well as Deceiver-type wet flies. The tailor we've taken lately have been good sized choppers up to 50cm.
I usually fish the 'Pin when low tide is around 7 o'clock or maybe earlier, and this means whiting are an option in the deeper channels after we’ve finished with the tailor. There have been some excellent whiting about this Summer but, as usual, they seem to be more active towards the later part of the ebb tide. Worms are the best bait, especially blood worms, but yabbies still take their share of fish and the idea is to use the smallest yabbies possible. Rig up with light line up to 3kg breaking strain, use just enough lead to hold bottom, and leave the rod sitting there until a fish is obviously hooked. This method is the key to success when targeting these tasty fish.
Flathead are still a possibility at the 'Pin. I love catching flatties on plastics and fine braid tackle, and never miss a chance to try for some of these great fish. On our last foray to the 'Pin we fished both the northern and the eastern banks along Crusoe Island and, although we caught nearly a dozen fish on the Squidgies, most of the fish we took were pretty small. That trip, incidentally, was on the first quarter of the moon.
So there you go! Select a morning with a tide dead low at around 6.30 to 7.30am and make the effort to get on the water just on light. And don't forget the ice, as did a well known fishing writer recently!
1) Flathead love Squidgies. This little bloke nailed his plastic breakfast in about 30cm of water.Reads: 613