THE rain has cleared, the fish are biting and school holidays are in full swing.
What we’re talking about here is the ideal combination of elements for a little parent/child outdoor activity.
Jason Nunn from Fishermans Warehouse reckons everyone should be headed for Lake Macquarie where the run of tailor is the best he’s seen for the past four years.
And the range is anything up to 3kilograms.
Jason tells us some nice tailor have been taken between Wangi and Coal Point on garfish trolled slow and deep, and some good catches have been reported from Belmont Bay and the Channel.
Good news for the amateurs is that both lures and baits are proving successful.
Click below to view some of the most recent Fish of the Week winners.
Mullet a la Blacksmiths
WHETHER it’s Blacksmiths Beach, Stockton or Port Stephens, there’s large mullet to be had.
Caught a few? Then check the internet for recipes like mullet with lemon and red wine, baked mullet with bacon, baked stuffed mullet with sorrel sauce or grilled mullet with garlic and rosemary.
Sand flat symphony
THE whiting are biting off the sand flats at Swansea.
Just ask Shane Lawrence.
A couple of days back he bagged 11 whiting up to 42centimetres in length and five decent bream.
And he did it using tube worms.
MORE accustomed to hearing embellished stories about ‘‘the one that got away’’, it’s nice to occasionally stumble across yarns about ‘‘the one that almost got away’’.
Glenn Cook – our Fish of the Week winner – has one such tale.
Seems that as he and his mate were attempting to net and drag his 22-kilogram mulloway catch into the boat on Newcastle Harbour on Good Friday, a mishandle and a slip saw the big fish partially returned to the water.
Said Glenn: ‘‘In panic we half net it again, I put down my rod and grab it under the gills, only to drop it when lifting it. It then went for another quick run, near pulling the rod in. I get the rod, my jacket button gets caught on the net, but I finally get it back and we get it.’’
His summation: ‘‘Pretty stressful but awesome.’’
Fanfare for flatties
OFFSHORE and the emphasis switches to flathead. Allan McCafferty took close to his bag limit off Newcastle at the weekend – and he got them on the drift.
High holiday hauls
HOLIDAYMAKERS are keeping the tackle shops busy in the Port Stephens area.
But they are being rewarded with some good catches.
Paul Lennon from Tackleworld Port Stephens said both the variety and size of the fish being caught is pleasing everyone.
Around Soldiers Point is bream and whiting, bream again around the breakwall and some really good flathead (90 to 100centimetres) around Shoal Bay and Little Beach.
There’s longtail tuna around Wanda Head while, outside, snapper are on the move in good numbers.
Hooking a cure
FISHING for a feed is one thing, fishing for funds is another thing entirely.
The Pirtek National Fishing Challenge is a one-day event where everyone can compete, with all proceeds going to the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA).
It’s on again on Sunday and record entries will battle it out for more than $130,000 in cash and prizes.
Heading into its fourth year, the challenge attracted 4000 entries last year with $80,000 going to the fight against prostate cancer.
This time around organisers have set a target of 6000 entries, meaning $120,000 will go to the PCFA. Extended entries closed late Thursday night, with registration fees of $20 going directly to PCFA.
EVERYONE loves grabbing a happy snap of their fishing exploits, as our Fish of the Week award proves. Now there’s a chance for even greater fame and fortune.
Submissions are being invited to compete for inclusion in the 2013 Recreational Fishing calendar.
It’s being put together by Recreational Fishing Trusts and the NSW Department of Primary Industries.
Twelve will be chosen and entries close on July 31 and there are some great prizes to be won.
For more information go to dpi.nsw.gov.au/fisheries.