Report 19/3/18

Water Tower Bait & Tackle
10 Ernest St, Manly
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www.watertowerbaitandtackle.com

Spero: sperok@ozemail.com.au
Nicole Penfold
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Report 19/3/18

Post by Nicole Penfold » Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:19 pm

Autumn has arrived and as mentioned the fish really came on,the squire/snapper were thick over at the lazaret gutter at peel island especially with the outgoing tide ,the bite started at 1pm on friday and 2pm on saturday, bagged out very quickly but luckily a couple of friends came past in there boats and all were happy to be eating fresh squire for dinner, thank heaven it gave me an extra day squire fishing. The saturday was nowhere as good but the fish were bigger the only problem was lots of small sharks that kept biting of the hooks and when they stopped the family of dolphins arrived to keep me company so that was the end of the fishing.

Fished for whiting on the banks before the green zone of the amity banks side and i have to say i have not seen bigger whiting in the bay and they were plentiful as well ,but you need to be careful not to drift into the green zone.

The mackerel were again in very good numbers on both days with plenty of good size schoolies from east of the hyubers before the deep trench and then on the western side of both greens beacons heading to peel, on sunday i could not believe the amount of small mackerel. It's going to be a great late winter schoolie season.

Now for something funny for everyone to have a little laugh about, i was coming back on sunday and out went the diving boards and as expected near the trench two very nice schoolies so thought better do a couple of large loops. next hit the spoon gets bitten off, so into the tackle box and a new halco spoon on. out it goes, another loop and whack, and i mean whack! It was obviously a big fish so i slowed the boat down. It turned out to be one of the biggest spotties i have seen at 85cm plus. As I was about to grab the line it did a head shake next to the boat and out popped the lure. I was a bit upset as it was a very big fish, so another loop and bang -- another monster! I got him behind the boat and as usual the boat was in gear, and I grabbed the line gaff ready to land him. He flicked his head and out came the lure again! I was very upset and decided thats it i am going home. I pulled the boat out of gear, did up the rods and you would not believe it – i had left the plastic sleeve halco have on to protect you from sticking the barb in your hand! I laughed very load with a few choice words thrown in. Anyway the fishing was great!

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Rusty68
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by Rusty68 » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:58 pm

Spero I loved the whole article but particularly the ongoing lost mackerel saga - great last photo cheers Rusty

kmcrosby78
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by kmcrosby78 » Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:17 pm

Some great hauls of fish there Spero, good to see. Funny story about the spoon - at least you can laugh about it ..... easier with fish already in the esky no doubt :).

stanau
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by stanau » Wed Mar 21, 2018 11:39 am

Hi yes it has happened to me :D

sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:07 pm

Thanks to all the laughs ,and yes it was funny monday tuesday were also really good days out took my mate the whiting master and he cleaned up very big whiting ,and lots of big schoolies so as soon as this weather clears up again i think its worth a trip out again.
The old antique boat anchor winch finally passed away and lifting the chain and 45 lb anchor by hand has not been much fun at all, the old arms and back are feeling it this week but what can you do.
I just wanted to say a big thank you to a gentleman who reads the column and the facebook page who decided to help purchase a lovely new winch at a fantastic price ,it really makes you believe in the human race when people do nice things.because they want to help.
thank you .

sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:44 pm

What a great few days on the bay,the school mackerel are not hard to find if you head east from the hyubers light to the hope banks and depending on the run in the tide which side of the banks to troll. They are mostly big fish and hungry, interesting they all had whole razor pillies in there stomachs and judging by the amount on the bottom i would say that's whats showing up on the sounder. Decided to anchor up and put a few pillies over the spot that has all the bait and was not disappointed. The only problem if you put the pilly too deep there are many many small sharks, but 15 to 18 ft down seems the mackerel will take the pillies and not the sharks. Anyway it was lots of fun if you don't wont to troll.
The squire were not as big. With the smaller outgoing tides managed two nice fish around 45 cm at the lazaret gutter with not the best tide to fish, and when cleaning them whole small octopus in their stomachs, so small octopus might be the bait. The trouble is they are so nice to eat! Just have to stick with the whiting heads.
The answer to when the squid will start got answered as there were plenty in the weed banks in the small boat channel all the way up to where the rous joins up. There were also school mackerel chasing the whiting which were not that prevalent these last few days. It's worthwhile floating a pilly out the back, and if you don't get a schoolie a squid will come up so you have nothing to lose.
They are very hungry with two or three attacking the squid jig while you are trying to get one in the net. There was plenty of black ink on the boat today, but knowing how nice they taste it was worth the time to scrub the back deck.
Let's hope the weather is ok for the break so everyone can get out for a fish.
On a sad note one of my good friends and fishing partner for many years kenny burkitt passed away. He was the original whiting master, a nd i will miss him and his aussie sayings and jokes that always had us in fits of laughter...
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sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:00 am

Hope everyone has a great easter ,just a word of warning this time of year the weather is very fickle and also in the past some big winds and south east changes have happened ,and with this low sitting of the coast and listening to all the weather experts it seems no one really knows where its going ,so take care out on the water better to be sad then sorry ,plenty of fish out there if the weather happens to clear,
keep safe ..
on a sad note my old fishing mate and our local electrician and very good friend kenny burkitt passed away this last week for those that came fishing with us we will miss his aussie slang sayings and the curry egg sandwiches .rest in peace my friend. and as you would say all the breast.

sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Mon Apr 02, 2018 3:43 pm

Finally managed a day out ,the plan was with the predicted south easterly to fish the outgoing tide but as in most cases it was north easterly ,and it was not under 10 knots either most times it was 15 so not much fun but the big tides and the strong winds all week have dirtied the water ,but interesting enough no mackerel close in on the way out but picked up 2 nice ones and a couple of big watsons bonnito opposite the lazaret gutter ,on the way back and with the outgoing tide picked up another nice one between the hope banks and hyubers ,i think when the winds ease and the big tides drop they will be there in good numbers.
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sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Tue Apr 03, 2018 5:41 pm

Something interesting there his been a few big spotties caught just wide of the sandhills and also a few schools feeding on the surface in front of tangalooma resort.and they are big fish .maybe worth a trip.
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sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Mon Apr 09, 2018 3:13 pm

Great day on the bay school mackerel in good numbers on the way out to catch some whiting opposite the lazaret on the banks which were there in good quality ,and the squid and cuttlefish were in the small boat passage in the weed banks with plenty of good size schoolies at the back of the boat ,need to have a floating pillie out the back under a float ,no more then a couple of feet under the float .plenty of fish out there today. tried a new coloured spoon today with chrome and gold which worked as well as the chrome only worth a try.
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sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:04 pm

Had to pop out this morning ,outgoing tide and south west to east winds ,managed a big schoolie between hyubers and the southern tip of green island and another on the eastern side of green ,so as last year they have come in close again ,but the weed was painful ,two nice squire but lots of sharks home by 10 am so a nice enough morning but the south easterly kicked in hard early.i was on the way back and was interested to see a fairly large shark close behind a boat pulling up his crabpot,seems like lots of sharks in the bay at the momment.

SteveO
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by SteveO » Wed Apr 11, 2018 9:13 am

Hi Sperok, long time reader, first time posting! Spent most of my time of my time in smaller boats around the pin but recently upgraded to a 5 meter centre console to comfortably get into some more bay action.

Followed your reports for quite a while and when the opportunity arose to head out, sunday morning me and the old man loaded up the gear and off we went to Peel. Setup camp behind the Platypus wreck to get some cover from the afternoon chop but our main aim was for monday and anyone out there would've known it was a cracker of a day! But after spending the day out there its bought about some questions which I hope you're open to answering and ill try not to ask too many! haha..

The first would be about positioning in the lazaret gutter for squire.. It seemed like a fairly open area into the entrance from the huybers beacon back down to the red marker next to the white sign. Do you find it better fishing further down into the gutter or around those outer edges? We tried a few spots around the outer edges and picked up a fair few babies but could see some merit in heading into the gutter further on a run out tide as the fish come off the shallows and look for deeper water. My old man seemed to think it was more of a muddy bottom further up the gutter but didn't head in to have a look.

After feeding the tiddlers, next on the list was a troll.. Which brings about question 2! haha.. So we started at the Huybers beacon and made our way north at about 7klms an hour. The depth seemed fairly consistent until we started approaching the first green marker to the north of the huybers. Had a few showings of bait on the sounder as we hit 4-5 meters of water but tried hanging around the deeper edges.. Made our way around the second green towards the entrance to the boat passage and didn't have any luck.. So the question would be, is it better to stay in the deeper water when trolling? Seems like a fair trip from huybers to the southern tip of green so is it more about preserving in the deeper water and covering plenty of ground or do a few depth changes into shallower areas prove fruitful aswell? Some of our better sessions on tailor in the pin bar have been in a meter or two of water as the bait gets pushed up on the banks but completely unfamiliar as to the thoughts of a hungry mackerel! haha

After an hour or so trolling we pulled up in the boat passage for a drift.. Certainly didn't fill a bucket but managed a few poor whiting who had no idea what was coming for them later in the evening. Im not the most avid whiting fisherman but as livies they've certainly become the weapon of choice for the larger flatties down the pin. Knowing their value in upgrading to larger fish, I was happy to give it a go.. Had strips of ox heart and squid which did the trick.

Copped a fair bit of sun on our morning mission so we head back to camp for a beer and a bit of shade. Threw the cast net over what seemed like a million hardy heads schooled around the wreck and spent the next hour pulling them off the floor of the boat and out of the net.

Evening come round so it was time for the whiting to shine! haha.. Butterflied a few of the smaller ones and just used the heads of the bigger ones.. Didn't venture far from camp, thought what I found was a reasonable starting point just out from the wreck as the rocky ground starting smoothing out to a sandy bottom and just hung around the edge. A bit of patience was needed but the butterflied whiting got smashed with no hook-ups so I was left with the larger heads.. A few of the heads got picked at by smaller fish and was pulling up whiting skulls that had every bit of juice including eyeballs sucked out of them.. Thought my luck was out until the bait runner started screaming! It was a very distinct run, the stuff the bay dreams are made of! haha.. Im not the most patient person at the best of times but for whatever reason I decided to let it go before engaging the top drag of the baitrunner. One swift pull and wind and the top drag was engaged and my mate down below kept resisting taking more line with every shake of the head. Was already eyeing off the prize and reaching for the net before my mate started heading left into the rocky ground and I think everyone will know where the story ends from here! With that much line out over the shallower rocky ground, my evening ended with a few choice words and another story of the one that got away..

Planned on heading back before it blew up yesterday but squeezed in a fish off the old jetty behind the wreck.. The hardy heads seemed popular with the sweetlip but unfortunately all undersize. Did walk away with a nice 45cm squire on some fresh mullet flesh so not all was lost on the trip!

At the end of the day the trip was based purely off the back of your reports and found your insight valuable so I hope you don't mind me picking your brain a little more into the future.. Cheers!

sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:57 pm

hi steve
glad you are following the reports ,so a few answers for you to improve the size of the fish.
and also in the future issue of fishing monthly magazine i am doing a feature on squire and snapper .worth a read and if you can go online i have also a feature on school mackerel and trolling for them in the back issues.
ok lazaret gutter i assume you mean hanlon light at the entrance,i find the best spot for squire and snapper is entering the gutter close to the hanlon light on your right you follow the drop off anywhere along there in 18 to 22 ft is ideal you need to be fishing of the reef into the drop of if you are getting snagged you are to shallow i like a south easterly with an outgoing tide the low around 5 to 6 pm and will fish from noon till the dead low i find a get some nice big fish on the slack water but most with a good run in the outgoing tide.big baits and berly is good the pickers will clean all soft baits so whole whiting ,heads pike ,garfish and octopus or small cuttlefish work well.
where you were anchored nearthe wreck the dropp off in front of the hole in the wall on the corner before you go into horse shoe bay is a very good spot for squire and sweetlip again you need big bait as the pickers clean up .
the muddy areas inside the lazaret towards the first green has good sweetlip.
trolling from the hyubers to the hope banks to the two greens depends on what the tide is doing you need to be trolling on the lee side of the banks and 20 to 30 ft depth i find the best (if you send me your email adress i am happy to send you a map)
the whiting have moved from the entrance and banks of the small boat channel to well into the small boat channel where the rous starts on the maroom side and also just of the green zone near the amity banks north of the lazaret. and most a very big whiting.worms and peeled prawns are the best bait i find.
hope this helps a little you can email me on sperok@ozemail.com.au
regards

SteveO
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by SteveO » Wed Apr 11, 2018 4:40 pm

Hey Sperok, thanks again for the insight.. And yeah I did mean the Hanlon light and I can picture the area you mean..

Did see a fair gathering of boats further down what looked to be into the Rous on the map, was tempted to see what the fuss was about but Im sure they didn't need another Jonny come lately spoiling the action haha..

In all honesty I think I may have tried to squeeze too much in all at once considering I'm relatively new at navigating the bay and unlike the pin, you don't have all the surrounding islands etc to find your way around so I think ill get back to basics and do a bit at a time.. Think the next trip may involve chasing a few whiting in the morning and making my way back around the island for the afternoon/evening.

Have got a few non-fishing related things to attend to over the next day or so but ill email you in the next few days anyway.
Cheers

sperok
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Re: Report 19/3/18

Post by sperok » Fri Apr 13, 2018 3:41 pm

Told my wife i was going down to refuel the boat ,and i was but it looked like glass so with no bait no ice (lucky there is a fridge on board) i thought i would sneak out to see if the squid have turned up at green island eastern side,and not only have they turned up they were in the hundreds,there were schools of up to 10 to 15 squid following the jig and all sizes from xlarge to winnie ones it was so much fun and the water was crystal clear ,of course did not take the camera to take the schools of them in the water but the phone at least got the ones on the bait board.happy calamari days 3.5 grm and tiger prawn pattern worked the best.

Reader Brendon, after reading one of my recent squid reports, took son Archie and Cooper out for a squid fish. From their smiles and the squid they're holding, you can tell they had a great time. This is why i do the fishing reports. To put a smile on children's faces makes an old fisherman very happy. Well done boys, and dad.
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