Hauraki Gulf

fishing report

Supplied by

Grant Bittle

Catch Fishing

Auckland / Hauraki Gulf January 11, 2024
Note: If map is showing it is created by LINZ / New Zealand Hydrographic Authority and made available by Creative Commons 3.0. Maps should not be used for navigation
@Mary Walker with another BIG snapper on the acrylic Paua Power Double Trouble, congratulations Mary, wow!

The new year in fishing has kicked off with a bang, featuring successful big game catches along the North Island coasts, surprisingly good snapper fishing in inner harbors, and exciting prospects for skipjack and marlin, all amidst a backdrop of stunning marine life sightings.

Cracking into new traditions and kicking into 2024 gear, Happy New Year! Traditionally, many would be just starting to discuss and prepare for big game fishing around now, but as we know, the only constant is change. Already, many striped marlin, big-as yellowfin, and big-eye tuna have been caught, especially on the east coast of the North Island, from Doubtless Bay to Waihau Bay, and all the way down. Don't overlook the west side either – Hokianga, Manukau, and Raglan are all off to a flying gaff start, attracting anglers of all levels, from juniors to seniors, novices to pros.

While you're at it, check out the new acrylic coated trolling Squidwings. Cast it out on the shotgun/long rigger, and you've got a fantastic tuna lure trailing behind, as well as an easy target for the stripeys or a big gnarly blue. Particularly effective for those fussy, flailing stripeys that do their captivating hula dorsal-dance right in front of your eyes, playing with lures and barely sparking the reel's ratchet sound into life before letting go, messing with your mind. Give them something easy to get hooked on.

Snapper fortunes have been surprisingly good, especially in channels with current, like the Waiheke channel and similar inner harbour areas. Despite the incredible amount of boat traffic, these areas can be particularly rewarding. Good current flow brings food, and areas like Sergeant’s have been doing alright. Even the tops of shallow rises can hold surprisingly good snapper – I've got a couple of secret spots worth a drift over. For tackle, I'd first pick curly tails and eels – the curly tails for their action and vibe, and the eels because they look like tasty big worms, perfect for snapper to snaffle, even during midday in just 5-10m of water. If you can, use the twin hook stinger system; if not, wait a bit longer before striking, as the fish often suck the eel in like kids with spaghetti. Pause 2-3 seconds before striking for a proper hook set.

Easy to see and attract fish - Luminous Whitewarrior SB andHarrier jighead in the dark

It might be too early for skipjack to enter the Hauraki Gulf, but these stunners are perfect for sight casting with a little microjig like the 20gm Pocket Rocket. Or, just relax and troll with 2 or 3 lures at 5-6-7 knots, clicker on, or with your softbait spin set – it's so much fun as they charge at light speed in all directions. Get your lures ready with sharp/new hooks, and if you've been trolling for a while, stop and let the unique Lil’ Squidwings or your microjig waft to the sea floor for a snapper or two. Ideal for enjoying a calm summer's day with little to no wind. And don't forget to keep fishing the Lil’ Squidwings well out back behind the boat/ski, as the lift and drop while dragging is a wonderfully successful technique for snapper.

BigKing eyeballing the baitball - what would you lure 'em in with?

Aji/mackerel anglers are doing well, with quite a few trevally being caught for that stunning sashimi. Mix it up with microjigs and micro-softbaits – you never know what they're in the mood for, and they can be as finicky as any fish.

From mackerel to marlin, it's game on, so get out there when you can and make the summer of 2024 one to remember. Good workups off the top of the Firth of Thames have kept the storm chasers happy too. Some nice snapper fishing around the 43m mark NE of Tiri, on the eastern side of the cable zone – just on a general drift with jigs, solid 45-55cm fish. It's been a bit quiet around the Rakino/Noises area, but the Tiri channel has turned up some good snapper this week. Mid-week anchoring/burley up and lures on the retrieve, anyone? Beats working. Take some memory-making pics of your fish and Catch fishing tackle (and tag Catch Fishing, of course), and share your experiences far and wide in the wonderful world of fishing here and overseas. And don't forget to watch for the Orca that have enthralled people from Takapuna to Tiri – magnificent beasts! Don't expect them to stay long; they're probably sick of the sewerage too.

Cheers Espresso!

Squidand Paua! What a combination, new acrylic head trolling lure, Lethal Lumo SQUIDWINGS! Tuna, marlin, kingfish and more.

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