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Bay of Islands November

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Well sometimes you wouldn't think we are heading into summer! We’ve had huge rain clouds over the Cape most of the day and a stormy looking horizon. On the fishing side, it’s still a little bit of hit and miss. Recently we had a good run on some great fish in the middle ground, with plenty nudging the magic 20 lb mark which we happily released.

Around the main reef systems (Centre foul, Mitas Foul, Brampton Banks and around Onslow Rock) and also up the Te Puna- Kerikeri side, shallow straylining is starting to come into its own as the go-to method for getting onto the big snapper.

Using a half or whole jack mackerel, my preferred bait of choice, find the wind and tide going in the same direction and these conditions will invariably produce the  goods.

We also like soft baiting, and have recently moved to the new Catch Fishing tackle and lures with good results.

The Catch ‘smelt livie’ and pilchard coloured soft baits seem to be the most effective, but we hear motor oil is a number one colour to start with too.

With huge schools of bait now gathering in the middle ground, drifting through the schools can result in multiple hook ups, with some good sized kingfish also in the mix hanging around the edges.

In general, locating the bait schools in the middle ground and around the 40 metre marks are a good place to start fishing with whatever method you choose.

Here’s a tip! Don’t be fooled by a large group of boats packed into a spot.

It may look like all the action is there, but most of the time all are just watching each other to see who is catching what, and commonly there is very little going on at all.

Unfortunately, as a brightly signposted commercial boat, we attract more than our fair share of ‘seagulls’ hanging on 😊

It pays to not be a sheep.  Try sitting on the outside of the action, a reasonable distance from all the noise, and commonly that is where the fish have moved to.

It’s a bit like the jaws film on a good day.  

Lots of boats, so be careful and respect each other's room, and most of all, good luck.




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