Fishin’ Maggie

What’s New On The Rock

I took a short trip to see my Sydney tribe and the resultant grandkids during the week. The weather was nuts, talk about extreme.  Monday was 38, Monday night was the hottest day since 1868 (lucky me), Tuesday was a mind numbing 39. Wednesday plummeted to 17 degrees, Thursday 20 and raining and Friday 20 and drizzle. I’m glad to be home, at least here I know it’s going to be hot all the time. I did trek up to the fabled Thompsons Creek Dam at Lithgow on the Tuesday chasing that mystical Rainbow and Brown trout on soft plastics. Just my luck, a 50 km/h westerly wind kicked that small dam up so rough we had tsunami sized waves on the side we were trying to fish. I’ll never complain about Island fishing being tough again.
After telling the story about the boy that tumbled off the jetty last week, a local told me that his big Labrador was playing and fell off the side of the jetty, splashing into the rough waters. Our local dog hero leapt gallantly in the waters, grabbed the waterlogged Lab, swam to the ladder, and then had to lift the heavy Mutt and himself all the way up the ladder. That’s dedication.
Some very keen local boys decided to check out what was left in the stinger nets at Horseshoe Bay at the extreme 0.19 low tide at 2 o’clock in the morning last week. Unfortunately by the time they got there, there were lots of dead fish, at the end of the net because they couldn’t escape the net on the low, and ran out of water (Maybe we need to look at a new net design for shallow beaches) The boys discovered a heap of deceased juvenile Mackerel, Mullet and other common beach species.

So what’s biting around Christmas?
We still have plentiful Grunter taking Pillie and Gar fillet straight off the beach. Smaller Grey Mac’s around WestPoint are still smacking almost any lure, no talent required. Flathead and Whiting on prawn are still a southern favourite, and Whiting are Plentiful. To keep things interesting we still have the unknown freight trains cruising past angler lines on occasion. These big buggers still take all your gear and sometimes rods too, if you are not watching. On this note commiserations to an angler at WestPoint who lost a rod just this way. Although he asked not to be named, he did admit to having a beer and a smoke in his grasp at the time that his rod disappeared into the ocean. I do thank him though, because he always buys new rigs from us.

There are Big Trout around Whitfield Cove, and in Nelly Bay if you are in a tinny, this year the beautiful Coral Trout have been unusually abundant.

Brewer Reef is also fishing well for Trout, although the Spaniards have left the area for deeper waters.
Merry Christmas on behalf of Janie and I had all our staff and we hope everybody has a prosperous Christmas and a very happy New Year. Thank you for all your support in 2016

Until next time gone Fishin’…. be back at dark-thirty

Cheers Dale

Fish’n N Fuel’n

36 Mandalay Ave, Nelly Bay 4778-5126

For your fishing, snorkelling and sports hire gear. We hire and sell fishing rods, and snorkel equipment, plus sell bait, tackle, spear fishing equipment, toys, party, pool toys, ice and convenience BIKE HIRE, SEGWAY TOURS ELECRIC BIKES AD TOURS

Fishin’ Maggie

What’s Happening On The Rock

The 70 mm of rain in Nelly Bay Sunday Monday was most welcome although Horseshoe Bay had slightly less as often happens. Although not enough to start the creeks running, it is enough to settle the dust. Now we need a group to go through and clean up the creek beds before the big flush to get rid of all the plastics and junk.

The early stingers have started arriving with multiple reports of juvenile Box Jellyfish in Arthur and Nelly Bay. Although these are still very small, wearing stinger suits for snorkeling and swimming are advised.

We sometimes offer our snorkel hire customers a $5 discount if they will wear the suits down the street in full view. It’s always a good laugh plus some visitors take us up on it, (like the bull riding boys over from the US 2 weeks ago. ( It always makes for fun pictures.)

The Jetty was a hotspot this week with Trevally schools smashing Hardyheads in close to shore, and taking lures and baits early in the mornings. In true Island fashion fish stories often arrive at the store from multiple sources. I heard one from a local telling me that he was on the jetty when he heard someone calling for a bit of help. The lady had hooked up on a big fish with a light rig, and was having difficulties getting the monster in. Our good Samaritan gave it his best, but the massive fish won and the rod snapped in half as the fish dragged the line around the pylons and escaped.

Later in the morning a lady came in with a snapped rod needing a replacement. I asked if she broke it at the jetty fighting a big fish. She was duly impressed with my ESP abilities, and I sold her a cheap replacement rod as she had borrowed the combo. She then told me a story about an incident the same day with a family visiting the Island. The cute 3 year old boy was so engrossed with his fishing, that he stepped backwards one too many steps and plunged backward into the ocean. Understandably there was pandemonium on the Jetty from witnesses, but when the calm father got to the edge and looked down, his son, was paddling, still holding the fishing rod, and quietly asked his Dad to get him out before sharks came for him. Dad jumped in and happily performed the marine rescue.

This same lovely family pulled into FNF 2 days later with a big fish for a picture. When I went out the front the young boy Asher had caught himself a monster Barracuda. (Great effort Asher.)

The Grunter are still in good numbers off Horseshoe Bay and WestPoint. Caillen and Matt took my little tinny and bagged out with big Grunter on Pillie after dark on Thursday in a top session off Young Bay. Smaller Grey Mackerel to 70cm are getting caught off the beach as they follow the bait in shallow. Mack’s off the beach are always a treat so get out to Westpoint with softplastics and Halco Twisties.

The run of Greys 2016 is nearly finished. I put the tinny in Friday and took a couple of runs to check the situation from Picnic to Arcadia. The bait is still very thick, and there are big Greys around in the meter range, but they seem totally spent from spawning and have no fight left in them, they came in like old rags.

A huge school of Longtail Tuna excited anglers and swimmers when they came in very close to the beach at Horseshoe Bay, doing a massive feeding run along the beach at a range of only 70 meters. As the Grey Mackerel leaves us after a bumper year, the fun fishing will be in the chasing of these amazing sport fish on soft plastics.

Until next time gone Fishin’…. be back at dark-thirty

Cheers Dale

Fish’n N Fuel’n

36 Mandalay Ave, Nelly Bay 4778-5126

For all of your fishing and sports hire gear. We hire and sell fishing rods, and snorkel equipment, plus sell bait, tackle, ice spear fishing equipment, toys, party, pool toys, and BIKE HIRE, SEGWAY TOURS and convenience supplies. Check out Kooler 24 hour Ice 7kg plus $4.  New BIKE section. Rod and reel repair available.

Fishin’ Maggie

What’s Happening On Maggie

November 2016 is now a memory, and what great fishing stories and fun there was. Big Grey Mackerel’s, measuring up to 1.3m, as well as many other hungry predators moving in close, happy to take your choice of lure. Unfortunately, there was also lots of the Slimy Wolf Herring in the mix, and getting them off the lures is always Gross. The massive schools of tiny whitebait attracted big predators, and all the local boats went chasing our staple November food source. The Grey run is nearly over ,nd the big Greys are starting to move on.

If you want to get some Greys in the last week before they move on, the locations are currently the following:

  • 2 km off Bolger Bay 70-80cm
  • 1 km off Hawking’s Point, to the SSW (the big ones)
  • 3 km off Arcadia headland on the edge of the channel.
  • 1 km off the channel in town, on the edge of the channel.
  • 1 km to the island side of S2 shipping Marker

Devastating was taking the grandkids out fishing on the weekend. TJ just pulled in a 90 cm Grey and Kyahn said, “I’m bored can we go bait fishing instead? (Spoilt kids, I hate bait fishing.)

Big Spaniards are still active at Brewer and the outer reefs have been producing top Trout, although to get the bigger ones you should go a bit deeper, to Slashers or down south more.

With Christmas coming and our biggest tourist season about to arrive, I hope you are all taking a few extra moments to enjoy the natural island before things go crazy for the next few weeks. The most common complaint we hear at FNF is slow road speed, with cars going so slow some seem to be going backwards, and sometimes even stopping on HB hill to take pics. Be patient, they will take a turn soon enough. Then with Christmas sorted we will settle back into the February- March wet season (we hope) when we hardly see a strange face and the Aeroguard is the hottest selling item.

Bad Luck to Little Nick and Nick who watched their best rod tear off across the harbour after being ripped off the public pontoon by an unknown aquatic monster. It was a sweet rig and will be missed. If anyone has a quality rig they don’t use anymore and want to donate to a young fisherman in the making, drop it off to the shop and I will service it before giving it to little Nick so he can chase those monster fish again.

The amount of times we get asked if there is a fishing licence required on the island has caused all sorts of answers at FNF from “Yep here’s my  bank account number, we will print one” to “Yes it costs one fillet per fish caught and delivered here” and everyone’s favourite “no but if you want to find out where we hide the big ones, that’s $20 fee” Maybe it would be great to have a Maggie Island Fishing Licence per visitor for $5 to fund Jetty projects, fishing conservation or something. It won’t happen but it could be interesting.

We do need an info TV at the ferry terminal though, too many people leave the island without ever experiencing all that they could have seen. (One for TOBMI to consider maybe, with the new and energetic board.)

Horseshoe Bay, has been a bit of mess lately with the northerly winds and the normal seasonal outbreak of the horrible Trichodesmium Algae causing swimming issues and smelly beaches. However it’s not the only thing making swimming at Horseshoe unpleasant, I had yet another report of local anglers tossing fish carcasses into the water at the boat ramp after catching and filleting them. This is illegal and dangerous for all the people who use it. Clean up and don’t discard fish carcases at the ramps.

Fact Of The Week!

Did you know that our sea lice that are currently being annoying are actually tiny jellyfish with the same nematocysts as adults?  (stinger cells)

Until next time gone Fishin’…. be back at dark-thirty

Cheers Dale

Fish’n N Fuel’n

36 Mandalay Ave, Nelly Bay 4778-5126

For all of your fishing and sports hire gear. We hire and sell fishing rods, and snorkel equipment, plus sell bait, tackle, ice spear fishing equipment, toys, party, pool toys, and BIKE HIRE, SEGWAY TOURS and convenience supplies. Check out Kooler 24 hour Ice 7kg plus $4.  New E BIKE’s. Rod and reel repair available.