The past week saw limited opportunity to get offshore due to the wind and swell, but on Sunday it dropped enough to be able to head out. Our rivers around the south west also provided plenty of excitement.

Offshore: Anglers eagerly awaited the forecasted light northerly winds on Sunday, and by the crack of dawn, boat ramps were buzzing. Tuna, whiting, snapper and sharks were all high on the list of species to target and they didn’t disappoint. Bill Gee and his son Damien headed off Warrnambool in search of some gummy sharks down the coast. The boys landed 6 sharks along with some pinkies and other bottom fish. Sam Powell, Jan, Anne-Marie and JP Oosthuizen fished off Port Fairy Sunday for some big crays in the drop nets. The two biggest pulled the scales down to 2.8 and 2.9kg which are some serious size crays. Scott Gray caught some tuna off Port Fairy late last week, and Adam Fowler also landed his first on Sunday. The action isn’t red hot on the surface but the fish are there. Cameron Pickert and myself headed over to Portland Sunday in search of a king fish or snapper along north shore. There was no signs of kingfish so we headed to the edge of the reef in search of a snapper. 3 pinkies in consecutive casts on Berkley Gulp Nemesis followed, which we thought was the start of a good session, but we soon found the fish had vanished for some reason. After mucking around for an hour trying other spots we decided to get out to the deeper water in search of school tuna and we didn’t have to wait too long to hear the reels screaming. Casting stickbaits we soon realised that they weren’t interested in any of our offerings on the cast, so we both tied on a diving minnow and sent them out the back under Suzuki power. Our first pass of a school we got a double hook up on fish around 10 and 15kg. Stupidly I decided to cast a soft plastic at them on my bream rod and after 3 flicks of the lure I had a screaming reel that was rapidly losing line. After a 10 minute fight a small 6kg fish was boat side ready to be landed. We were stoked with these fish and were content with our efforts, but we couldn’t help ourselves and after the 10th fish hit the deck we had enough. Best lures were the Bluewater Classic in white and a Rapala sxr12 in the Wahoo colour. Plenty of whiting were brought into the cleaning tables also that day with some pushing 50cm. Darcy Cutter, Ben Woolcock and Tim Vincent headed out on Sunday as well fishing the Port Fairy and Killarney area in close. The boys compiled a bag of flathead to 55cm, a nice gummy and a 40kg thresher shark. The thresher was taken trolling in approximately 10m of water behind Killarney, on a Samaki Pacemaker. A real effort to land in a 4.2m Quintrex!

Estuaries: the Glenelg River has fished well again for bream, with anglers fishing Cranka Crabs and live crab tightly on the rockwalls. You’ll be best to fish the rockwalls between Donovan’s to Simpsons Landing. If you find that they aren’t taking a whole crab,  then try giving it a whack with the back of your knife and wait for the juices to come out of it. This is a natural berley and can sometimes turn a tough day into one to remember. A 1/0 octopus style hook is perfect for fishing crabs as the hook runs through most of the crab and causes minimal damage to the shell. Mulloway have also been on the target list for anyone heading to Nelson. Dudley Wright fished the Nelson Nongs over the weekend;  an annual trip for a big group of anglers mainly targeting mulloway in the upper section of the river. Dudley caught 2 for the trip which measured 61 and 72cm on squid. Closer to home, the Hopkins River has been producing some good fishing for those casting lures and cut baits. Tom Leach had a ball on Monday night catching 8 bream on tuna. The river mouth is shut at present so that means one thing, the fish will move in even closer up onto the banks that were dry. Casting shallow lures and surface lures is a great way to target these fish in skinny water along with an unweighted bait. If you’re fishing from the bank then don’t bomb a long cast out as far as you can as you will miss the fish that are potentially at your feet.

Freshwater: Lake Bullen Merri has some blue-green algae on the surface at the moment, so if you are going to fish, take some care as this algae is toxic. Over the other side of Camperdown, Lake Purrumbete has been fishing well for redfin on live minnows. This same technique has been producing some nice trout also down deep. Hopefully this year we see some more giant trout and chinook salmon over the magical 10lb mark after a couple of quieter years.

The swell will be up this weekend unfortunately, so you’ll be best to stick inland for your fishing. Until next week, tight lines and best of luck.