I can’t remember the last Winter that has such an impact and so many reports of great fishing.
Travelling blackfish have been reported from Seal Rocks to Blackhead, with some big tailor up to 5kg running the beach.
With the tailor are patches of salmon and although they are not as thick as previous years around this time, they are easy enough to target with a strip bait or pilchard.
The beaches have been firing with jewfish and reports of fish over 20kg are common.
School jew have been everywhere and that is a great sign for the future.
Recently Brian Everingham and I went targeting the estuary jew and managed to catch 45 in one day. OK, they were all between 30cm and 45cm but the fact we could find that many in a day is an indication of how well our estuaries are surviving.
I certainly had better luck with the jew from Forster breakwall. I’d heard reports from the Tuncurry wall that there were plenty of bream and tailor poking around and the odd schoolie.
Sure enough, Forster side was no different. The schoolies ranged from 55cm to 1m and I managed eight fish in two sessions, a week apart, with the tide pouring into the lake at top speed – slack water produced nothing on lures. All were taken on a 1/2oz jig head and 7” Gulp Jerk Shad.
The wall has been producing some big tailor in the evenings on ganged hooks and pilchards or surface poppers, as well as bags of good-sized bream from 500g to a kilo or more.
The bream along the wall have been chewing their heads off on live yabbies and cooked prawns and have been tight along the rocks, especially with any run in the water.
At the ends of the walls you will find some thumping rock blackfish but you will need a bit of a bump in the ocean to get them stirred up enough to bite freely.
Typical of this time of the year, Janies Corner has produced some big tailor, salmon, school jew and bream.
After dark and late afternoon are the best times; coincide that with a rising tide or the top of the tide and it’s even better.
Reports from other beaches have been mixed but all include bream and tailor.
Finding gutters is the critical tip and the dynamic nature of beaches means you need to do some daylight scouting. Check out Boomerang and Elizabeth beaches.
The bream fishing in the lake has been consistent with good fish still holding on the bridge pylons and lower lake oyster racks.
Winter is a good time to target a trophy bream on lures. While they may not be as numerous as they are in Summer, the size of the Winter bream tends to be much better.
Flathead are still available in the tributaries to the lake and around the shallow edges of the numerous islands.
Any shallow, patchy weed areas in the lake are worth a go. Winter whiting up the estuaries too can be a surprise when using live worms or yabbies.
Great Lakes Tackle is expanding into camping in a big way, even adding ‘and Camping’ to its business name as it relocates two doors down the road to Shop 23, 29 Manning Street Tuncurry on the last weekend of July.
Brad and Lisa Andrew will be stockists of Roman, Primus, Kookaburra, Coleman, Esky and Black Wolf camping and outdoors gear, Engel fridges and Blundstone Boots.
There’ll also be a range of top-grade offshore wet weather gear, wind jackets and fleeces, plus a small selection of boating accessories to go with all the excellent fishing tackle and bait that the store has carved a reputation for.
The phone number, 02 6554 9541, remains unchanged.Reads: 2552