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G'day Raiders, With the holiday season fast approaching I receive many PM's asking for places to fish LB, ocean, rock estuary etc. I generally respond to all at length and provide as much information as I can to give our members the best possible chance to catch fish. So what I am writing here is an overview of the area and most of the general locations that are productive year round. I do not claim that this will guarantee that you will catch a trophy fish or your bag limits, nor do I claim that I am some fishing god of port stephens (far from it), this is merely a summary to assist any member travelling to port stephens, based on my approximately 20years experience of fishing the area. Estuary and the bay- Probably the most productive place in the bay would be the breakwall in nelson itself. You can catch many species there from bream, luderick kingfish and even jew. This wall offers land based fishing and those fortunate to have a boat can make the most of the deep channels that run off it. The wreck at corlette offers the chance of that elusive jew also and can resemble a carpark this time of year. The bay has many places that you can catch flathead and whiting. Drifting any of the beaches within the bay in 2-5m of water around an afternoon high tide is best time to target flathead. LB fishos can do the same thing walking and casting lures. My favourite lure for chasing flatty is a 100mm bloodworm wriggler or 80mm silver fox. When it's warm, a 5inch jerk shad in pilchard is a killer. The whiting are in numbers year round and most are trumpeter whiting which have no legal size limit and taste the same as their cousins. (sand whiting) Fishing the racks from soldiers point to tiligerry creek will pay dividends on your bread and butter species also. North arm cove is a great spot for these as well, but it may also pay to take a few crab traps when there on as you can be handsomely rewarded. If your trying to hide from the N/E winds can be tough but hawks nest/tea gardens is your best bet and can produce thumping flatty up there, especially with the run of the prawns. I've heard of a few unstoppable jew in 3-4m of water there too around the bridge pylons. Middle Island adjacent the boat ramp also has some deep holes and many of jew have been caught there too. Bait: There are plenty of area's in the bay to collect bait. You can pump nippers at corlette or taylors beach at low tide. The wharf at soldiers point often holds slimies, yakkas and garfish. Squid is any weedy patch within the bay but the most productive spot is shoal bay just before the heads. Live whiting for jew in the bay is gun bait. My theory on fishing the bay is that the bay fishes best 2hrs before low to low. This is when I've caught most of my jewfish especially if it coincides with a low light period. With the exception of the late afternoon flatty session at high tide. Rock fishing- First of all I must say that I practice rock safety and there are many places that are fishable but can change at a moments notice. You can fish anywhere between Birubi Point, Fingal Bay and Tomaree headland. These areas hold a variety of fish and constantly changes with the season. To name a few spots that are the most productive are: cemetery point anna bay, any of the headlands of boat harbor and boulder bay, sunny corner at one mile and of course tomaree headland itself. There are people on this forum with way more experience than me from the stones, so I wont go into methods and techniques but you are able to catch anything from snapper to longtail at some of these locations. Beaches- The obvious stand out for this area is Stockton beach and is 39km long and only accessible by 4wd for the most part. You are able to fish at Birubi and walk up but most of the deep channels are further up the beach. The best area is about 7km north of the signa wreck and is where the most channels are. During the winter months, this is a gun spot to chase jewfish on the run of the mullet. Fingal beach at the spit is a great place to throw lures for flatty and whiting but be cautious with the tide flow and sand banks. Many of tourist have drowned in this area thinking they can walk to the island. The south end of wreck beach and box beach on low light periods will produce salmon and tailor. You can use a variety of baits and lures and is generally a very quiet area away from the crowds. Middle rock at one mile will produce almost anything and can be another great area to target jewfish. I've caught a few there and the channels near the rock itself are worth a shot. The other side is Samuri beach which is another great beach to fish from but it comes with a warning as it is a NUDE beach and only accessible by 4wd. (take whatever tackle you want ) Baits: Beach worms, mullet fillets and pilchards I find are they best baits to use in these areas Ocean- During the summer months if you are heading offshore there are many of places you target different species. The islands out the front of the headlands area great place for a not so confident or new to boating destination for trolling or fishing islands and the washes chasing snapper. In saying this, know your limits! The entrance to the headlands can be a dangerous area to navigate and is known as "the rips". That is because you can often be faced with a southerly wind, an exiting tide and an easterly swell, all bouncing off the headlands and makes it like a washing machine. The islands out front normally hold many bonito and the best method is trolling. The occasional kingfish is caught there, as well as fishing the washes early morning for snapper. Unweighted baits thrown into a burley trail should produce a few. Broughton Island is the go to place, my favourite spots in this area are, the sisters, cod rock and north rock. Other areas worth mentioning are, the gibber, the little gibber, 21 and airforce reefs, the V and the pinnacles. All of these marks can be found in the GPS section of this forum in which I placed a post GPS Marks Port Stephens. The landmines or fish traps east from broughton in about 100-120m of water will hold dollies during the warmer months. Seal rocks is also a great place to fish but remember, it's a long way in a trailer boat and requires a fair amount of fuel. Marlin: Well if you come here to chase marlin then there is no need for any information because your guess is as good as mine! Bait: It is plentiful up here and doesn't require much effort usually. Out the front of tomaree headland 30m near the big crack (mrs murphys) is a great place for slimy and yakkas. There is also bait station at cabbage tree island. Be cautious as this is a sanctuary zone and bait fishing only. No dropping anchor either. Notes: There are many sanctuary zones up here and it is your responsibility to have maps and know the area you are fishing. They are patrolled regulary and my advise to anyone heading offshore would be to have the appropriate equipment as well. Marine rescue operate 24/7 and it is worth checking in before leaving the bay. Don't forget to check off though. Well, I hope that has given you some insight into this area. I'm often out and about in the area's I've just described, so please feel free to say hi or come and join me. I'll be in a haines hunter 470 breeze with SCRATCHIE written on the boat. And please, whether you are land based or fishing from a boat, TAKE YOUR RUBBISH WITH YOU! Tight lines all, Cheers scratchie!!!
Hi, im new to the site, but have been reading these forums for a while. Found some good info, but looking for something a bit more in depth. Im just wondering if anyone has any good ideas or information for fishing the rocks at night. Im heading to tomaree head this week, an oceanic rock self with deep water, and am wondering what I can do to catch something special. I normally use pillcards under floats, and catch 40cm tailor, with the ocassional snapper or salmon. What could I do to increase the size of these fish, or hunt new species that might be available. Any information or ideas would be greatly appreciated. Cheers