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Rug up and enjoy!
  |  First Published: May 2010



It’s time to rug up and get amongst what Winter on the Central Coast has to offer. There’s no point complaining about the cold, as in reality we normally enjoy some pretty good fishing in June, but you’ll probably have to work just a little bit harder.

As I mentioned last month, squid are normally quite big as we move into Winter but they normally taper off as ocean temperatures drop and by July they tend to become more elusive. So if you want to stock up on bait for jewfish or kingfish, do it now!

On the subject of jewfish, this time last year we started experiencing a good run of school-sized fish along our beaches.

So far this year we’ve had a mix of smaller and larger jewies caught at places like Pearl Beach, Wamberal, North Entrance and Budgewoi. So there’s no reason there won’t be more lurking along the surf after dark this month.

Just remember that the better tides are the high tide changes within a few hours of sunset.

Tailor and salmon are also reliable fish to chase along our beaches this month, with the usual ganged hooks and pillies the best way to go.

As these fish also bite better as the tide is rising, why not get to the beach about an hour before sunset and cast out pilchard baits until dark, then swap over to the big gear for a chance of jewfish.

I’ve also hooked some big tailor on larger baits aimed at jewfish after dark, with North Entrance being the pick of the bunch if bigger tailor are on your wish list.

Rock fishing is normally very productive in June, especially for blackfish and drummer.

I always recommend using white bread soaked in some seawater and mashed to a fine pulp. It’s a first-class rock fishing berley that attracts drummer, blackfish, bream and trevally and can really make the difference between success and failure off our local rock ledges.

Although there are many great rock fishing spots along the Central Coast, for those who haven’t fished there I highly recommend up around Catherine Hill Bay.

The northern and southern sides of Catho are excellent places to fish for a range of species but the large platforms to the south are a bit flatter and easier to fish.

Some very big blue groper also lurk along these rock ledges, so bring the big gear if you’re keen on seeing just how hard these brutes fight.

ESTUARIES

Back in the calmer water, Brisbane Water and Tuggerah Lakes will be slowing up as water temperatures fall, but if you specifically target bream and blackfish in both waterways it shouldn’t be too hard to bag a feed.

Now is the time to work lures deeper and slower for bream. Soft plastics like Berkley Gulps and Squidgy Wrigglers or small metal blade lures will often catch more fish than floating hardbody lures through the cold months.

I’ve been experimenting lately with a new type of jig head for plastics called a Spine. It’s basically a weighted wire frame which is inserted through the plastic and then a W-hook is slipped onto the rear end.

This way there are two hook points down at the tail end of the plastic, which means more of those tail-nipping bream are hooked. At first this Spines system seems a bit strange, but I’m convinced it hooks more fish.

Estuary hot spots this month are Budgewoi Channel, The Entrance, Woy Woy and the deep water under The Rip Bridge. A few bream may also be lurking around the leases in Brisbane Water and under some of the boat hulls up around the Gosford end of the system.

Offshore fishing has been very good over the past few months.

It’s been a particularly good year for kingfish, with plenty of 7kg to 10kg fish caught close in and out wide.

Bonito have also been quite thick, although a touch small. While there will probably still be a few kings and bonnies close in around the shallow reefs and headlands, the better fishing will most likely be out between 70m and 100m.

Some big yellowfin tuna have been caught in patches at times and they are another option on the wide grounds and out to the continental shelf.

Much closer in, we can expect a few snapper, silver trevally, morwong and flathead.

Of course, there are always those dreaded line-cutting pests, the leatherjackets. They’re perfectly good eating if you plan to target them with strong long-shank hooks, but they can make life very expensive for those jigging for kings.

So although proceedings are slowing down on all fronts and the early-morning wake-ups aren’t much fun, there are certainly fish to be caught this month.

June can still be a good month for bream in the lakes and Brisbane Water.

Reads: 1913

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