The weekend seen some decent conditions for the offshore anglers which seen some great fish landed. The local estuaries also had a good work over by the many keen anglers.
Saltwater: as I mentioned in the intro the offshore fishing was well worth the effort over the weekend and earlier in the week. The most notable capture was none other than Chris Soleman and his mate with a 154kg tuna caught off Port Fairy. Some a little different for this time of year when we usually see smaller fish pop up but a very welcome surprise that’s for sure. There is no shortage of smaller fish up on the surface but they are again like other years very very hard to tempt this early in the season. Dropping your leader size and lure size will greatly increase your chances of hooking up to a tuna. Jamie Malone landed a great Thresher Shark which was his first fish in his brand new Anglapro/ Suzuki package. To make the capture even more memorable was when they landed it the boys noticed that the hook had indeed got stuck in the tail so Jamie did very well to land it after all that. The king fish have been getting hammered by anglers eager to land these hard fighting and very challenging fish. Dan Hoey and his crew from Salty Dog Charters Port Fairy landed a beast of a king for one of their customers over the weekend which was estimated at nearly 20kg! A fish of this size is pretty uncommon but not an impossible achievement when all the stars align. The majority of south west kings are between 3-10kg which are still great fun for all at that size. Scotty got stuck into the rat kings early on in the week landing fish to 75cm or 4kg trolling sluggos slowly behind the boat. On the calm days where the water has been calm and clear the fish have been easily spotted but tempting them to eat a lure is another story. Don’t think that the only action is on the surface this time of year as there has still been plenty of snapper and shark caught off the bottom. Our fit out guru Jubby and good mates Wal and Darrien caught some nice gummies out off Warrnambool over the weekend. Along with the snapper being good offshore the breakwater is full of them at the moment and are a great option for the novice or kids to catch plenty.
Estuaries: the south west estuaries have settled down and look to be on the improve with both water quality and the fishing being had. The Hopkins River although has been tough the past couple of weeks on the bream front at least is back in summer shape. Fish are moving or already have moved up on the rock walls and are taking crab casted unweighted into the ledges. There is still a steady flow of salt water coming into the system on high tide and has made the bottom look very fishy. I would not be surprised one little bit if a Mulloway or two was caught down there after a big push. One angler that did happen to land a Mulloway was Lewis Holland who landed a 70cm fish on a Zman Grub from higher in the system. Best bet for these ghosts of the estuary is to get yourself some live mullet and either put them under a float or on the bottom. The Glenelg River is fishing very well as reported by Daryl Richardson who caught some excellent bream on live crab upto 46cm! A great fish for a river that isn’t known for its big bream. The hot areas were from the Isle of bags down to Popes Nose. Summertime on the Glenelg is the go to time to start chasing Ep’s on surface. Generally anywhere from Sapling Creek all the way up to Moleside is the best area to hit up. This is a huge piece of water so it can be a bit daunting sometimes.
Freshwater: on the freshwater scene Lake Purrumbete is the hot spot for Redfin and some cracking chinook salmon over the past week. Fishing live minnows down deep or soft plastics fished on a paternoster rig is your best bet. The chinook salmon can be targeted either with a downrigger with a lure attached off the back or simply creating a burley trail with Pilchards and sending down some small pieces of pilchard with a unweighted hook in it. Salmon to 4kg have been taken over the past week with the redfin being the average 35cm range with the odd bigger one thrown in.
With the holidays now started for many the fishing opportunities will become more readily available. Please stay safe during these times and fish hard. Until next week Merry Christmas to all and tight lines.