Destination The Three Kings
25 May 2016
The ultimate fishing destination for many, the famous Three Kings Islands and its associated banks, represent the pinnacle of recreational fishing in New Zealand. Trophy sized striped marlin, blue marlin, and swordfish are all caught routinely, as are comparatively oversized kingfish, hapuka and bluenose. Black marlin, yellowfin tuna, big eye tuna and bluefin tuna all show up frequently enough to be considered a realistic prospect on the right day.
1. The Elingamite wreck – very advanced diving
Kelly Talton famously put great effort into attempting to salvage around 2.5 milllion dollars of bullion and coins from this wreck. He was at least partly successful. This is a very challenging dive and should only be undertaken with detailed planning.
2. West Island – kingfish
Both the 26m pinnacle and the adjacent island wall, fish well. Look for bait and target with speed jigs and live koheru.
3, 4 & 5 South West Island – kingfish
Either spot is productive when targeted with live koheru. Look for bait sign on the surface and marks in mid water. Hapuka also common.
6. Crater Bay - kingfish
Koheru can be caught on point between Crater Bay and North West Bay. Plenty of trophy kingfish have been taken here.
7. North West Bay – anchorage, kingfish, crayfish
NW Bay is the more popular of the two main anchorages on Great Island. Koheru and squid can be caught under lights and in the morning. Kingfish are common and the diving in towards the boulder fall is stunning and productive.
8. South East Bay – anchorage, kingfish, crayfish
SE Bay is good anchorage in the right conditions. Plenty of diving options can be found. Target kingfish at Farmer Rocks.
9. The Graveyard – broadbill swordfish
Productive sword ground, particularly towards the King Bank side. Also produces a few big eye tuna.
10. West of the 249 – broadbill swordfish
11. 249 – marlin, bottom fishing
Good late season marlin spot. Try sinking live koheru. Terakihi and hapuka on the bottom.
12. The Magnet
The single most important fishing spot in New Zealand. Marlin, kingfish, hapuka, you name it, it’s here. The writer’s best fish from this location is a 384kg blue marlin.
13. The Squiggles
Like the Magnet, a hugely productive region of the bank.
14. Bruce Martin’s corner
Certainly worth exploring when the blue water is here. The bottom fishing is terrific as well.
15. The Compass Rose – marlin, tuna
Quality spot worth a couple of hour’s effort, and within reach of North Cape in a day trip.
16. The Fingers – marlin tuna