Easing up of Conditions
  |  First Published: June 2008

Over the last few months the relentless onshore winds, coastal rain and occasional storms have certainly made it difficult to actually get out there and have a throw.

Luckily though, we haven’t experienced the really heavy rainfall that has troubled the far north coast and here’s hoping we don’t see a repeat of last year’s June floods. At least when the wind has eased off, conditions have allowed some good fishing. With the cold setting in the summer species have slowed and the winter fish are beginning to bite.

In Brisbane Waters that means more in the way of blackfish, trevally, a better class of bream and a few big jewfish. Normally, the smaller school jewies ease off through the cold months, but hopefully quality will replace quantity. I recommend using larger baits like live pike, big live mullet or big calamari squid to tempt a decent jewfish around Woy Woy, the Rip or further out in Broken Bay.

The last time I fished at Woy Woy I was happy to encounter a few aggressive frigate mackerel that had moved all the way up to the rail bridge. That’s not out of the ordinary during May, but they’ve probably come to their senses and moved on by now.

Tuggerah Lake bream and flathead have slowed down now and it’s all blackfish at The Entrance, Budgewoi and San Remo. Last year’s blackfish run was a wipe out due to the floods, so here’s hoping this Winter will produce the goods. Remember to use the best quality weed you can find or buy and the same goes when fishing in Brisbane Waters. The better your bait, the more likely you are to catch blackfish.

Despite the increasing popularity of surface poppers and hard plastic lures for bream, as we move into the depths of Winter I would strongly suggest going back to plastics like berkley gulps, powerbaits or squidgies. Cold water temperatures mean that bream tend to move into deeper holes and scented soft plastics very slowly worked close to the bottom are a good way to bring them undone.

One place I was enjoying some good Winter breaming a few years ago was Wyong River, up around the fish co-op. Sadly though, Wyong has been a muddy mess ever since last year’s flood. Not once did it even slightly clear up through Summer or Autumn. Flooding may have started the problem, but a combination of weekly rainfall and the disaster area around the water supply pipe further upstream just aren’t allowing the creek to recover properly. At this rate, I can’t see it clearing up any time soon.

Beach fishing has slowed down a little. The good run of tailor has now been replaced by just the odd tailor and a few salmon. April and May never really produced the run of jewfish I was hoping for. A few have been active along the beaches, but not as they normally are through late Autumn. That doesn’t mean a few big jewies won’t be cruising the surf zone this month though, so it’s still worth fishing after dark with quality baits. Of course, you’ll have to rug up though!

When sea conditions allow, the rocks should be well worth fishing this month. Drummer have been active in washy areas lately and they are always an exciting way to warm you up on a bleak Winter’s day. By using baits like peeled prawns, cunje or bread there’s a fair chance of hooking into a few bream, blackfish or trevally along with the pigs, so a mixed bag of quality table fish could be your reward for braving the cold.

Offshore fishing has slowed down now, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth getting out there. Silver trevally are probably the most common Winter fish along the Central Coast at this time of year. Fish in close, with light line and get a good berley trail going for the trevally. Most of the time they are a mid water fish, but deeper down or further back in the berley trail you may find a couple of snapper, bream, leatherjackets or morwong.

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