Wind calms and fish come on
  |  First Published: April 2009

Wind has been the hardest thing to contend with lately, with most days producing an easterly wind. This easterly wind makes it difficult to fish the gutters and also brings the dreaded side wash, which can make it almost impossible to hold bottom with a 6oz of star sinker.

However the wind is starting to calm down and should continue to do so, which will make for some good fishing, as there are some reasonable catches starting to show up.

Species like salmon, flathead, gummy sharks, elephant fish and the odd snapper have been appearing again, with the lead up to Easter and around the new moon being the best times to target these species. This will mean you should hit beaches from Golden Beach through to Woodside, with Delray Beach and McGuarans Beach the best starting points. Fresh baits of salmon, tailor, mullet and trevally will be the best when targeting these species. Squid is a good frozen stand by especially when freshly frozen.

Salmon have been taken from Lake Tyers in the east through to McLoughlins Beach in the west. Most fish have been averaging around 500g to 1kg, however you never know when a bigger fish up to 4kg can make an appearance. April is the start of the salmon’s annual winter run, so numbers and size should increase from now on. Bluebait, whitebait, pilchards, squid and pipis have all accounted for fish, as well as surf poppers, soft plastics and saltwater flies fished on paternoster rigs with baits above. Soft plastics and metal lures have all worked well when fished when the wind is blowing a little and making it hard to fish baits. They are a good windy day option because they can be fished when side wash is making it impossible to hold baits in gutters.

Gummies have been taken around the new and full moons with fresh baits of salmon, tailor, mullet and trevally being best. Frozen baits like squid, pilchards and bluebait are also worth a try if fresh bait in unavailable. Most beaches have had good deep gutters so there is no particular beach that is standing out. It is best just to get out there and pick a deep gutter and put the time in around the moon phases.

Elephant fish have also been taken as a by catch when targeting gummies and have been taking fresh salmon strips in particular. The beaches around Woodside are the best areas to target elephant fish at present. Don’t forget the recent changes to the bag limit of elephant fish, which changed from three to one on March 2.

Flathead have been making an appearance at Golden Beach, with only small numbers being taken as the run of fish from summer is starting to disperse as the water cools. The size of fish is still reasonable, with most being around 45cm. There have been some big sharks being landed by anglers paddling large baits out around 100m on heavy game gear, with some of these sharks ranging up to 3m long. Most sharks have been bronze whalers, which are quite common along the beaches during the warmer months. Numerous sharks have been hooked when using normal surf gear, however the fight is generally one sided until they bite through the mono trace.

With Easter just around the corner it is still worth hitting the beach for the chance of a good fish before the winter cold really sets in.

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