It’s a well know secret amongst locals and regular visitors that autumn is the best time of the year to visit this area and can be some of the best fishing for variety for the whole year. Easter can be a little unsettled with the big moon and huge tides but this year no one told the weather gods and it was the best spell of weather we have seen all year and one of the best Easters for weather we can remember since being in the shop. The fine weather also meant plenty of people visiting our corner of the state and both fishermen and holiday makers enjoyed all there is to do here. While there is always both sides of an argument when something changes those who were in town in the afternoons and evenings over the Easter break would have to agree that the outside dinning areas have put a very different and positive feel around the place and lets hope we can see it become a permanent fixture.
Starting off the positive feel for the weekend was all the activities around the Good Friday appeal fundraisers that were on. A huge congratulations to all the people involved, organisers to sponsors, that made it such a successful day in San Remo. SES, CFA, volunteers and especially Elyse and her team from the San Remo hotel who coordinated many of the activities for the day to raise a massive town total of over $34,000. Our fishing competition was a massive success and a huge thanks to everyone involved. Mel and I are very grateful to all who sponsored the competition and gave us a prize pool around $9,000, the biggest we have had since we started the comp. There was almost 90 people that took away prizes for the weekend and the biggest thanks has to go to those who entered helping us to donate $3,400 to the Good Friday Appeal.
While the fishing competition was a bit of fun there was some serious fishing happening and we weighed plenty of fish over the 4 days. The best part about these weekends is the number of fish we see caught off the land. Several of the best fish weighed, especially in the kid’s categories was from those fishing off the land and not in a boat. There was plenty from the boats as well and some good variety which is typical of this time of the year.
Tuna were very good late last week and earlier in the weekend but as more and more boats headed out they scattered and went deep and became very difficult to find many numbers at all, if the tuna are staying around it will be a few days or so for them to settle again unless they have decided its been long enough and time to move on and we will need to wait until they come back next year. Despite many finding none there was plenty of flathead reports over the weekend from offshore and the trick was just being lucky enough to find the patch. Although there wouldn’t have been, it seemed like there was only one patch of flathead out there and a select few found it and got plenty. There was no real area or depth it was just 100% luck that you found them. The only thing that you could possibly say was common to the successful ones was plenty of moves and short drifts.
In the bay it was a typical holiday weekend, fishing on the first couple of days was excellent but as the traffic got heavier the fishing slowed. We had some good reports of take home pinkies but we also have 100’s of reports of the undersized ones in plague proportions again as if they have moved back in again. Amongst the pinkies there was some very good whiting and if you could find a quiet corner before the pinkies caught up to you it wasn’t difficult to get into double figures. The whiting are very mixed in size and you will find your share of undersize ones, unlike 3 or 4 months ago where everything was big.
We weighed several calamari for the comp but not the numbers we are used to weighing for this weekend and they have just continued their frustrating ways as it has been all season. Still well worth dropping a jig over the side wherever you stop just in case but difficult to justify a whole session on the calamari based on the reports this year. what we did weigh was several flathead from land based customers over the weekend. The sand bar off San Remo and the jetties all produced and while no one got a lot there was enough for a feed if you persevered, three of the five biggest flathead all came from those fishing off the land.
Probably the most note worth catch for the weekend came from a couple of customers that were fishing the comp and had been catching a few smaller fish to weigh. They called us up Saturday late to see what time they could weigh fish and when they arrived said they had something to weigh that wasn’t in the comp but wanted to see how heavy it was. When they opened the esky there was this rather large cray trying to get out which weighed over 4kg.