Winter has officially started and the temperatures have dropped, but the fishing has begun to fire!
The Parramatta River has been the pick of the Sydney’s saltwater estuaries. It has provided some fantastic bream fishing, with anglers often catching high numbers of fish throughout the month. The bream have been moving with the tides, so the anglers who are chasing the schools of fish and using their electronics have gotten the best results. Making sure your bait or lure is hugging the bottom 50cm of the water column this is key to turning these shy winter fish into aggressive feeders. The most popular bait lately has been Hawkesbury prawns, and the best lures have been 2.5” grubs and Ecogear VX blades.
For those anglers willing to fish ultra-light, there are still good sized bream and flathead to be caught up in the shallow water. Just remember that natural presentations, stealthy movements and long casts are crucial; any sudden movements will spook these fish.
The daytime mulloway fishing has picked up, with numerous school-sized fish being caught around bridges on the slack of the tide and beginning of the incoming. Working soft vibes like the Samaki Vibelicious and Jackall Transams on the bases of the bridge pylons with a few short sharp hops have resulted in the bigger sized schoolies. Getting these fish out of their lairs has been the hardest part, with most people targeting these fish dropping their leader size down to 12lb to get the bite. It is high-risk, high-reward fishing.
If bait is how you like to target mulloway, the method of choice has been to fish the rock bars around Juno Point and the drop-offs and holes around 15m at Wisemans ferry using squid strips on a running sinker. Don’t overdo the sinker, but make sure it reaches the bottom.
The saltwater isn’t the only place fishing well – the freshwater rivers have produced some good trout, and with the season closing on 12 June it is wise to get your fix on river fish before the end.
However, all is not lost as the lakes have been fishing well with the ‘false spawn’ about to occur in both Lake Lyell and Thompson Creek Dam. Using larger lures which imitate smaller trout coming to feed on eggs, or get in on their ‘business’, can result in strikes out of aggression. If these larger lures don’t result in the fish, don’t look past the humble Tassie Devils. Reports are saying the three new colours (eruption, yellow mongrel and sunset frog) are working well.
If the trout do your head in and you need to save the day, don’t fret because Lake Lyell and Lake Wallace hold good healthy populations of redfin. These fish make for a good feed and are lots of fun to catch. Target dam points with a little bit of timber and weed and solid drop-offs. Curl tails on 1/12oz or 1/8oz jigheads hopped off the bottom through the schooling fish have attracted the larger models. If you’re land-based and wanting to find schooling fish, the ‘catch one and see if there’s more’ method does work. However, using a castable fishfinder such as a Deeper can seriously reduce searching time and provide you with a layout of the bottom.
The most important thing to remember about this time of year is fish to the conditions. The clear and cold water requires a slightly lighter and more subtle approach. Light braid and long, light leaders will bring on more action. So get out there, rug up and give it a go!
• Peter Jacovides has been the owner/operator of the Australian Bass Angler tackle store in Penrith for more than 20 years and is available to offer advice or have a chat most days. If you want to know about the latest tackle or technique, kayak fishing, or tournament bass boats, drop into the store at 105 Batt Street, Penrith or phone (02) 4721 0455.Reads: 351