Cold Climate vs Hot Action
  |  First Published: June 2010

When you think of winter, what comes to mind? Cold windy weather, heavy dew and frosts? Or is it big bream, lovely luderick, marvellous mulloway, super snapper or dynamic drummer! Forget the chill this month as there’s some scintillating fishing to keep you warm and heading back into the cold for more.

If you’re looking to do some rock fishing, then above all things don’t become a statistic, do your research, check the tides, weather conditions and swell. Then before you start fishing, scope your intended location and make sure you let someone know where you are going and what time you’ll be back, and above all don’t go alone!

July should see some better quality tailor push in closer with spots around Tackingpoint Lighthouse and Grants Head worth a throw. If you’re looking for some drummer then spots around Bonny Hills and Point Perpendicular will be hard to beat. Best baits will be whole peeled prawns, and cunjevoi. Berley will be essential to get them on the boat: bread and loaded cunjevoi casings in the washes should be enough to get the bite happening.

If you’re heading offshore, then I have one word for you – snapper. This month sounders should be red with snapper. To find quality specimens you’ll need to hop around the reefs to locate active fish. These fish show up on the sounder as arches stacked up on top of each other. Best baits will be squid, slimy mackerel and bonito strips. Lightly weighted and slowly drifted down to the fish, will get the best bites.

If you’re looking to target snapper on plastics, then quality 5” and 7” jerk baits are hard to beat. Mix up the colour presentations to find the best on the day. I like to start with a sardine colour and then head to the wide range of chicken colours.

Searching for the best spots can mean some travelling so start with spots off Nobbys Beach, then travel south stopping at reefs off Shelly Beach and Lighthouse Beach, and then moving wider to Petersons Reef. Port has reef areas all the way from the north end of Shelly beach to Lake Cathie.

Estuary action will get you warmed up this month, with the majority of the fishing action coming from the lower reaches. Bream will be lining up along the coal walls and bait fishing after dark will prove to be the best method in snaring a feed, with whitebait and bonito strips the best baits.

If you haven’t got access to a boat, then don’t despair as you too can enjoy the action, with spots along Settlement Point Road one of the prime locations. You can also take the ferry across to the north shore to enjoy the fishing on the North Wall.

Lure tossers will be peppering the wall with deep soft plastics and a bevy of vibes, with the best of the bunch being the Ecogear metal vibes, Cranka and Bassday vibes. If you haven’t fished vibes then don’t be shy give them ago. They are simple to fish, and if you start by dead sticking them on the bottom and slow hopping them, you’ll soon get the feel and start catching fish.

Luderick will more than likely be in plague proportions in July, as they are currently schooling. With run-in tides, it will be shoulder room only at some of the best spots. Good land-based spots will be the breakwalls on the Camden Haven and Hastings River. Also the wharf around the Hastings co-operative will be excellent late in the day and into the night. If you have access to a boat, then the channel in Limeburners Creek and Tom Dicks Hole at the top end of Limeburners Creek will be really ready to fire. Best baits will be green weeds and cabbage weed and peeled prawns.

Winter flathead are an excellent target species for kids this month. With fish not hard to locate and, if recent trends continue, then there should be plenty of fish around. This month they’ll be best targeted on smaller size soft plastics with 2” and 3” the best option. This is probably because the fish are colder and their food source in winter is predominately smaller bait fish and crustaceans.

Targeting fish at the top of the tide in the shallows is the key, as these lizards, as well as the bait fish, look for warmer water and warmer conditions.

Make sure you get out and enjoy the winter fishing in Hastings region during winter. Rug up and get ready to strip off the layers as the fishing action gets hotter and hotter!

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