The weather has been poor but the sun will rise, at least through Friday and Saturday, offering anglers strung out with cabin fever a chance to scratch the itch.
Blustery winds, heavy rain and big seas have been the theme for over a week now, make that a month, but these are forecast to recede in the next two days, before another sou-west change swings in Sunday.
“Friday and Saturday is the time to get out and have a crack,” Jason “One For” Nunn, from Fisherman’s Warehouse at Marks Point, said.
“People have had limited opportunity. Stuck inside. Going nuts. But Saturday is going to be great weatherwise with light nor-west winds, seas tapering off and a bit of sun. Friday’s not too bad either, although Saturday is the day.
“Many tradies and concreters will have been rained out this week, so take another rain day Friday and get into it. I expect sporting cancellations this weekend too, so it’s going to be a great chance to get the boat out.”
Jason reckons reckons places like The Farm or Texas Reef will offer fertile snapper opportunities.
“If you can’t get out to that deeper water, then keep to the inshore reefs along the coast and you’re still going to find reds. But watch out for this sou-west change on Sunday.”
A good 4.30pm high tide on Saturday in the run-up to the half moon adds to the incentive for anglers fishing the estuaries.
“I’ve spoken to guys who have braved conditions this week and got out on the lake, and they’ve been getting flathead, tailor, flounder, bream and jew.
“There’s a million salmon in Salts Bay, and with that high tide about 4.30pm, I recommend getting on the water about 1.30pm and fishing the run-in. You’ll find tailor mixed in with them.”
Coastal breakwalls and rock platforms are ripe with luderick, bream and drummer, offering great options if the swell is kind.
“This weekend will be your best opportunity this June to fish, basically,” Jason reiterated.
“The month’s almost over and it hasn’t been flash but this will be the first chance to fish outside and on the lake in milder conditions.
“You’ve just got to be prepared to have a crack.
“We’ve had a lot of rain, so the fresh will be sitting on the surface, and the fish will have been pushed around by the swell and big seas, so you’re going to have to get out there and see where it’s up to. But don’t wait for Sunday.”
Robert Gauta, general manager at Newcastle Co-op, reports most of his ocean fishers had a weather enforced holiday this week.
“Hopefully we should see some fresh prawns coming in by Friday morning,” he said this week.
“It’s been very quiet with all the rain and wind for the inshore guys as well, hopefully this will give the rivers a good flush and fishing will be good in the coming week.
“However, we have had a few bream and luderick coming in from Port Stephens, Hunter River and Tuggerah Lakes and a few Blue Swimmers being caught.”
Robert reports his fleet are still waiting for the submerged shipping containers that fell of the Taiwanese freighter recently to be found and mapped.
“There might be some new artificial reefs for the recs to enjoy,” he joked.
Up Port Stephens way, Paul “Ringo” Lennon, from Fish Port Stephens Estuary Charters, is optimistic about the days ahead.
“Should be some good jewy fishing with all this fresh we’ve had,” Paul said. “Once the estuary cleans up it’s going to be great for bream and jew. The big stir outside should be good for the snapper.
“There’s been plenty of luderick inside the bay and along the ocean rocks. Also good drummer.
“Not so good on the beaches, but once it flattens out we should see salmon and tailor in the waveline and bream and jew lurking in the gutters.”
Downey gets up
Jason Downey claimed season honours in the Newcastle District Anglers Association 2017-18 competition, with a third placing at the Graham Dorse Memorial held last weekend.
Jason came into the final event of the NDAA calendar one point behind Leigh Stephenson, who finished sixth. Both fished together, in fact, in a boat-off, working the waters off Moon Island.
Mick Price took out the event, held in tough conditions. Both Mick and runner-up Shannon Denning fished up at Forster, out of the wind.
“Strategic master stroke,” NDAA Craig Oaten spokesperson observed.
Bog Hodges took out the veterans division. No ladies or junior competed.
The 2018-19NDAA season starts up in August with the annual rock comp.
Meanwhile, Newcastle finished fifth out of eight at the District Anglers Association State titles at Hat Head over the long weekend.
“We did win the beer drinking though, I think,” Jason quipped.