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

JR with his second mako shark of the season.

This Saturday is the San Remo Channel Challenge and if you are going fishing and want to pick up some supplies you will need to do so early before they shut the road.
The road into San Remo is generally closed between about 10am and 2pm, you won’t be able to drive down to the shop and when you can later in the day parking can be difficult.
Your other choice is to launch your boat and pull up at the San Remo floating pontoon and walk up to the shop to pick up what you need.
The weekend after is the San Remo fishing competition which we have had a lot of interest for and plenty of people have picked up entry forms.
To answer a couple of questions that have been asked, it is open to all anglers, land or boat.
Yes, you can win more than one category, all the prizes are for heaviest fish in each category and everybody that enters is eligible for the $1500 Tuna Charter lucky entry prize.
Drop into the shop if you need more information or to pick up an entry form.
We have now had a delivery of rated Dee shackles for your trailer after getting clarification from road safety and how to understand the regulations.
If you are not sure, drop into the shop and I will explain it as it has been explained to us and we can clear up the confusion between lifting and breaking strain rating.
As I have said before, it makes little sense to need rated Dee shackles when you can use welded galvanised non-rated chain and connections to the trailer are even weaker, but I guess smarter people than me write these rules.
Bit of a mixed bag this week with it starting very slow and very few people around but improving as the week went on into the weekend.
There is still the odd land-based angler around with most locals now and visitors back at work.
The calamari reports have been very ordinary for the last two weeks or so with only the odd one being caught despite there being some good tides at the right time of the day.
The reports improved over the weekend and we started to see more caught from the jetties and the beaches.
It’s still not as good as it was a month ago, but hopefully it’s on the improve.
Very early morning was a bit better than late evening and there was even a couple from during the night, especially from San Remo jetty.
We had the odd report from every jetty around the island and both Ventnor and Cleeland Bight beaches.
Although several were caught it was more people catching one or two each, rather than one or two people catching several each and plenty that didn’t see one at all.
Not a lot different from the boats or kayaks with the kayaks having slightly more success. Around Ventnor and Cleeland Bight were the best with a few from Reef Island and some good reports from those fishing both sides of Tortoise Head.
Several reports have also come from those fishing offshore catching calamari up to 4 or 5kms out to sea.
When the weather permitted, offshore has been the place to be with plenty of variety and plenty of fish to take home for the table.
There are some very big schools, mostly of salmon swimming around and when you spend some time following them you will also notice the odd kingfish swimming with them.
Some of the salmon are big and we have had them reported to almost 3kg but they’re not the easiest to catch.
It is worth persevering with different lures, especially if you are going to use some lighter gear because pound for pound they are a very good fighting fish.
As for the kings with them, good luck as many have tried all sorts of things and been unsuccessful in coaxing any of them onto a hook.
The divers are still seeing plenty but no one has been telling me of one caught on a rod and reel.
The flathead reports have been excellent and the reports have been very similar to each other.
When you hook a flathead, you will have a tug of war with a squid to get it back to the boat, but before you hook a flathead you need to get a bait past the couta.
The couta are very thick, can be very frustrating and if you are heading out for a flathead drift I suggest you make up plenty of rigs to take with you.
There are plenty of slimmeys still and with all this food around there are plenty of larger predators.
Makos, Threshers, Bronze Whalers and Blue Sharks were all reported with one customer fishing out of the western entrance telling us he had about an 8’ white around the boat for 10 minutes or so.
Most of the Makos reported this week came from west of Cape Woolamai while other sharks including a couple of gummies over 10kg from east of the cape, but either east or west the majority were caught from 40m to 50m of water.
Finally, after two very quiet weeks whiting started to appear in numbers again, but you needed to be out of bed very early because the best fishing was before breakfast.
Those who reported good numbers were on the water before the sun was up and heading home just after sunrise.
The best spot was in Cleeland Bight for the very early fisherman.
We did get other reports from around the bay from those fishing the tide changes, but the numbers were far less.
The best of the other areas was around Tortoise Head with Ventnor, Rhyll and Dickies Bay producing whiting at some stage.