By Craig Edmonds of Jim’s Bait and Tackle, San Remo

LAST week I mentioned the San Remo Fishing Festival and the blessing of the fleet and have had several questions about how it will work.
While some of the finer details are still being worked out the blessing ceremony will start at 10.45am on the San Remo Jetty and there will be an official part of the ceremony before the boats are blessed starting with those tied up at the jetty. The Reverend will then board a boat to bless any boats that are anchored beside the jetty area.
One question I have been asked is can I just bring my boat down on the trailer and the answer is yes, there will be an area set aside for boats on trailers.
So just to clarify you can take part by tying up at the jetty, anchoring just off the jetty and parking on the trailer in the designated area.
Because all these areas are going to be restricted to numbers, it’s important that you register by texting your name, boat size and email address to 0409 018 980. You will be sent out more information regarding where and how to tie up, anchor or park.
It was good to see some calm weather during the week and several people took advantage of it heading out for a fish.
If you were lucky enough to be able to head out offshore not only did you probably catch a few flathead but if you were one of the lucky many you would have seen the odd whale or two.
Like the flathead the whales were in reasonably close and one customer had a couple around the boat in under 30m of water.
In the bay I think most have just given up on whiting after several frustrating trips looking for them and have changed to targeting calamari instead.
Offshore has been reasonably consistent for flathead all year in number anyway and it has been the size that has changed the most.
For those putting in the time offshore there has been very few trips that have resulted in no flathead at all, but they have had a few trips where thy have been very small.
The flathead reports coming in now are very mixed in size and catches contain more under 40cm than over. I have even had a couple of reports from customers that they could only catch undersize ones.
This week the flathead were in close and the majority of the reports came from 30m of water and under.
In the past couple of months, the flathead reports have come from anywhere between 25m of water and 50m of water so if you are heading out there you might need a bit of prospecting to find them.
If you have been out there it’s a very good chance over the last month you would have seen the odd whale or two heading north.
They should hang around for a little while yet so don’t forget the camera if you are going offshore in your boat.
Although the weather has been good enough for flathead it’s not been all that good to head where you need to for a gummy. There was a couple caught this week but only smaller ones and not the bigger models you would expect to catch.
In the bay as I said earlier whiting fishermen have given up for a while after getting very frustrated over the past six months trying to find them. We have had the odd reports of whiting, but they are very few and far between and a lot of hours are put in for one or two fish.
Having said that we are still getting the odd report from people that have never been here before that are just stopping in a spot that looks good to them and getting a bag of fish, so I don’t know that there is no whiting around, maybe some are just over thinking it. I have had a couple of reports from regular customers targeting whiting but nothing but undersized ones.
Calamari are OK while nothing special and the ordinary patches of weather is stirring up a lot of weed, the biggest enemy to squid fishermen.
The weed isn’t as big a problem in the boats but for those on the land it is very difficult and hard to get away from. It hasn’t made much of a difference to the reports between baited jigs and artificial jigs as to which was best, and it seemed to change daily.
Boating reports, while down a bit in numbers, came from almost everywhere you would expect. For those on the land the same, almost every spot you expect to catch them we had a report. For all the types of fishing this week the reports were up a bit because of the school holidays and more people around.
The good Salmon fishing continued last week, and we saw some quality 2.5kg to 3kg models from the beaches. Kilcunda was by far the best for the bigger ones and the middle carpark back towards cemetery beach was the better and just on the last of the tide.
The beaches on the island produced a few bigger ones and some reasonable 1kg but most were very small, and several told us lots of throwback fish. The reports were a mixture of baited and lures with pilchard and white/blue lures the best.