Grab your jumpers and beanies as we head into the cooler parts of the year. It’s a magical time for big cod anglers though. We all look forward to this time spent fishing, then sitting around a nice red gum fire on the banks of the river, telling yarns about the fish that got away.
The cool starts are upon us already, with dew covered grass, and rocks like black ice that make navigation to the river banks a little bit more difficult. The rest of it though is pure bliss; the fog lining the chilly waters offers the angler that sense of solitude and a backdrop the city dwellers dream of. And then there’s the fishing!
As we move into late autumn, the weather patterns have been a bit more consistent. Several days of high pressure have occurred, but with the highs can come some westerly winds.
Sydney Harbour is going nuts at the moment and is well and truly making up for the season’s slow start. Hopefully this is an indication that the activity will run late and we should be experiencing good fishing well into May, possibly even June.
There is nothing better than a good fishing yarn, and those that stretch the length of the Murray are often in proportion to its size and the giant fish that lurk within. A classic cod yarn told to me many years gone is how Boundary Bend on the Murray River came to be…
Last month, I talked about it being the crossover time of year when the tail end of the season for some species overlaps with the start of the season for others. Now that we are into May, we will see many of the fish that were still in numbers last month suddenly become a lot harder to catch as both the air and water temperatures begin to drop.
As the waters cool over the coming months and westerly winds promote clean, clear conditions inshore, anglers will notice an increase in the number of squid.
Thousands of land based anglers head to the Macleay Valley each year to fish the rock ledges for a huge variety of species that seasonally visit our shores. There are many reasons rock fishing is so productive along this area of the mid north coast, however, the close proximity to the continental shelf and the fact that this region is visited by both southern and northern species of fish in huge numbers are 2 leading factors.
Beach fishing is arguably the most popular way of participating in our sport on the NSW mid north coast. The very young to the very old and everyone in between can get in on the action, whether it be soaking a bait, spinning lures or flicking soft plastics from the sandy shores. A 4WD vehicle may be required to access some of the more remote areas, however, plenty of quality fish are located on the doorstep of the villages and populated areas of the Macleay Valley.
May marks another change of seasons in the Macleay Valley. Easter has come and gone and the crowds have definitely died down. Although the weather is beginning to cool, the fishing action is still hot. If variety is what you are after in your fishing, then now is the time as the pelagics slow down and the bottom fishing picks up. It is still quite possible to have a day out with a red-hot bite from both categories though.
The Macleay River system originates well inside the Armidale Shire, and flows uninterrupted for nearly 300km to the sea at South West Rocks. A healthy population of Australian bass inhabit a large percentage of this waterway, from the tiny creeks in the upper Macleay to the tidal zones of Kinchela Creek.
Queensland made Haines Signature boats seem to have a boat for every purpose these days, and their new 543SF (the SF stands for Sport Fishing) model follows that trend to a T, delivering anglers a specialised, high quality, sportfishing rig.
I don’t know what it is about Grady White boats but every time I set out to review one from Game and Leisure Boats at Runaway Bay the weather takes a vicious turn to the windy side of the scale.
It's no secret that Narooma's Wagonga Inlet is a favourite estuary haunt of mine. It has an abundance of different species that are catchable using a variety of techniques, but even after fishing this pristine estuary for 30 plus years, it still amazes me how well it fishes at times.
What a cracking month we have had on the fishing scene around the Merimbula region. It really doesn’t matter what sort of fishing your into, there’s definitely something for everyone.
The far south coast has seen some great autumn weather, while a good drop of rain in late summer has kept the water flowing in all the local rivers. As we head into winter, the town is really quietening down, with Easter being the last busy period until Christmas.
The town is still busy, with fishos from all around coming to sample the fishing that Mallacoota has to offer, and they haven’t been let down.
There comes a point where our native freshwater fish shut down. This can be at the onset of winter, at the beginning of autumn, and in some cases at the start of a particularly hot summer. We all have to accept (begrudgingly) that fish need some down time.
Well we are definitely within the throes of winter now. It’s getting pretty cool both in and off the water. A half frozen foam seat to sit on at 6.00am really sends the message home!
With the cold weather now settled in, a lot of anglers think that the best fishing is behind us, but this is far from the truth. Most fish species will be super active in May; some because they are starting to think about spawning, which makes them aggressive. This leads to some sensational fishing, especially for trout and redfin.
The offshore fishing from Crescent Head in the south to Stuarts Point in the north can't be described in just 1 word, as a single superlative doesn't do it justice.
There is one particular seafood type that I love to catch, and that is squid. It’s a great live or dead bait and fantastic to eat. I have found over the years that they can be a very easy to catch, while at the same time they can be one of the most frustrating things to catch. Regardless, they are a great species to target.
Yep, there are a few nice snapper hanging about most of the deeper reefs off the Illawarra coast at the moment, and they should linger for a few weeks before working their way into shallow water looking for early cuttlefish.
Whether bream, billfish or anything in between, there are a number of elements that need to combine in order to hold a successful fishing tournament.
In part two of his three-part series on the basics of soft plastics, I will detail a deadly rig for fishing these lures in snaggy or weedy waters.
It’s probably stating the obvious, but you can now sense the chilly nights and experience the occasional brisk day. The cause is not just the sou’ east and nor’ west winds that should be more dominant in May, but also the shorter days that will see roughly 3 hours less daylight for a few months.
Spending 3 solid days fishing the Mulwala Classic Invitational has reminded me that Lake Mulwala is the undoubted home of the Murray cod.
There are plenty of trailer manufactures and retailers across Australia. Some have been around for a very long time and some are very recent to the market. But how do you know which ones are selling Australian made trailers and which ones are importing trailers and selling them as Australian made?
If you’ve managed to pick this issue up a few days early, then you have a couple of days left in the bass season. This year has seen the introduction of several new fishing regulations, 1 of which is to increase the bass spawning closed season to include May. The bass spawning closure will now run from May 1 until the end of August.
Hello readers, my name is John Goodwin and I’m the new Ballina and environs correspondent. My passion for fishing runs high like any fishing junkie — if it swims and has fins I’ll have a crack at trying to catch it on lure, fly or bait.
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