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

Fishing is usually about being in the right place at the right time, quality 40cm+ whiting from an afternoon session in Cleeland Bight.

Young Sam headed out with his dad after kinder for a quick fish and a nice offshore red was the result.

LAST week I started with how the forecast calm conditions didn’t happen and it stayed a bit windy, this week is totally opposite with the forecast very ordinary conditions Saturday turning out to be anything but. The day was perfect with the bay glassed out almost all day and offshore extremely good as well.
The problem with the perfect conditions is everybody was looking at the forecast instead of opening the window and looking outside. While you must always have a look at the forecast especially if you don’t live close to the water, sometimes it pays to make a call or have a look around the various Facebook pages to see what the conditions actually are.
Those who did look outside and go for a fish, while they didn’t find big numbers they managed to find some quality and several feeds for the table. Just about all the reports we had for the week all came from the latter part of the week where conditions were dryer and less wind.
The water is slowly warming up and is also cleaning up with a few tide flushers, although I would expect that will still change as we certainly won’t be finished with the rain yet and with the ground so wet it is just running straight off into the rivers and into the bay.
There were several species reported for the week from both land and boating customers, some species like draughtboard sharks, cod and rays not necessarily wanted though.
On the land, the usual spots were the best but in the boats with conditions often dictating where you could fish reports came from some of the areas not fished all that often.
Offshore and it was snapper, flathead, gummies, gurnard, couta and silver whiting with those heading out not traveling too far out to sea, especially Saturday because of the forecast conditions.
It would appear we will have a similar year to the last couple with the couta, plenty of all sizes to be caught without a lot of effort. It doesn’t take much of an effort to catch the couta and you can use lures or baits and they are a good target species if you are taking the kids for a ride offshore as they can put up a good little fight for their size.
If you are going to target couta use a wire paternoster rig or a short wire leader if using lures. There are a few tricks people will use, painted sinkers, wire leaders, small swivels to limit bubble trails and the list goes on but it is very difficult to stop them biting off your gear.
The snapper, gummies and flathead caught offshore all came from between 25m and 40m of water and knowing how to read your sounder helps with the edge of the harder bottoms the place to target. From the end of the Cape to the windmills were the areas and the usual squid and pilchard baits the ones to use.
We had a few whiting reports this week and while the size is quality numbers are small, as one customer told me when you get six or so and they are all over 42cm you don’t really need 20 for a good feed.
One of the best reports came from late in the day during the week from the eastern entrance between the many couta and wrasse and not really in a spot you would chase whiting.
With the large numbers of couta in Cleeland Bight, not many reports from in that area but other areas like Boy’s Home Channel and between Coronet Bay and Reef Island over the weed beds have produced a few fish.
A couple of reports came from Dickies Bay and the weed beds close to Rhyll with a report from a kayak customer off Ventnor.
With the better weather slowly starting to show itself, we will be opening seven days a week again from this week and extending our hours to open at 8am weekdays and 7am weekends.
As we get closer to summer we will be open earlier on weekends and public holidays, keep an eye on our Facebook page during the season for shop specials and the latest reports.