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Wellington 13 February

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Decent weather windows mean some pretty good fishing for us here in the capital. We have had some big tides accompany the full moon, which can be ok for fishing, but tends to push too much water around in deeper spots or areas prone to current. Expect these to calm down as the moon passes into its next phase. Good news is that in shallow where the current has less effect is going great guns at present. Snapper in particular are on fire at the moment, especially in shallower up the west coast. The further north the better it seems, and it’s a great time to chuck a surf caster if you like it land based..

We’re predicting limit bags, and 20lbers are always on the cards when the snapper fishing is this good. Fishing on the sand or reef (25 -70mtrs) will produce fish with the help of ground bait or slow drifting over hotspots. There's been a lot of small ones (1-2kg) around Mana and down to Boom Rock, with bigger ones (3-5kg) north of Pukerua Bay. Slow jigs have been working well as well as bait and berley.

On the south coast the airport reef and east of Sinclair head (35-45mtrs) have been producing some nice snapper and occasionally in good numbers too.

Surfcasters fishing Palliser Bay, the inner harbour, and out west, have generally had some really good results catching nice snapper around the 7-8kg mark.  

It's prime time for the coast north of Fisherman's Table Restaurant to start firing off the shore for snapper if anyone's keen.  If you don’t have any luck you know where to go for dinner at least ;-)

Tuna time is here, and albacore are getting caught out wide from Kapiti and Hunters at present. The water temp is around 19-20 degrees where the albies are hanging out.  These fish are not called the chicken of the sea for nothing, and their delicate pale flesh makes for awesome eating either smoked, or seared in thick medallions leaving them uncooked in the middle.  

Hapuku spots often have albacore around them at this time of the year so it’s worth having some tuna lures in your kit, and slow trolling around at 6-7 knots while you look for some decent Hapuka sign.

On that, we found some awesome puka out west in around 160 – 180- metres zone, but head out to more like 200+ if you are heading south towards Ohau and have a look around for some blips on the sounder.  Last time we were out we found a classic ‘puka-pyramid’ where they are stacked up on top of one another and almost looked like structure.  Mark it fast! If you can get down on that results are pretty much a sure thing.

For puka and the other deepwater species such as bass and bluenose, the trench is fishing pretty well when you can get out, particularly for bluenose. Good numbers of small to medium fish south of Baring head with bigger ones on the far side spots.  If the weather or conditions are really good, head to the far side of the trench and get adventurous, there are some good fish that bit past the usual more popular marks.

The back of 5 mile (woba) has bass on it and the gemfish and tope have been common by catch at most spots.

Most spots are producing good fish at present on the turn of tide. We have been fishing Makara and Ohau with good results lately but I hear Fishermans, the sth Mana patch, 78mtr rise and other spots are firing on and off.

Terakihi and other species - out west These places have gone well for us - Boom rock (50-70mtr) Makara (25mtr), Verns (70mtr) and south of the bridge (40mtr).

Kingfish - it’s going well in the harbour for land based anglers. Lures, live and dead baits have all been producing fish up to 20kg over the last week. Live mackerel and slidebaiting have been the best method and all these places have produced good fish up to around 20kgs recently - Oriental bay, Sunshine bay, Greta point & Flat rock.

In the boat places like Hunters, north end of Kapiti, Aeroplane Island, Fisherman's, Wiraka rise, Ohau and Boom, plus Ward Island, the Wreck, Point Halswell, Jenningham and Barrett’s Reef should all produce good kingfish at this time of the year.

If you want to catch a kingi, use your heaviest tackle with a good drag and put a livie or or two out, tow a Rapala or get into some mechanical jigging or topwater action.  My point is that you have to target these fish with firm intention if you are serious about getting good results.

Inner harbour - if the weather’s good Ward island has been good for kingis, snaps, trevally, gurnard and kahawai. Around the leading light is a good place to start. Point Gordan (20mtrs) is always worth a crack as well as Falcon Shoal. Point Jenningham and Halswell in 20mtrs are good southerly spots

Surfcasters have been doing well on snapper and there has been a few moki around, but kahawai and gurnard are the mainstay for shore fishers particularly in the harbour.  

Tight lines


Report provided by PETE LAMB FISHING


Shop - 15 Kingsford Smith St, Rongotai

Open 7.30am-5.30pm : Monday to Friday and 08.00am-4.00pm on weekends.

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See Also

The Lateral Line: Episode #11
The boys find themselves in the right place at the right time. Gannets diving have given away a pack of hunting kingfish
The Lateral Line Boat Build: Ep #5
Suzuki powered and fully loaded. Here's the latest on the Lateral Line boat build
Catch Rainbow Warrior Double Trouble
The Catch Double Trouble is one of their very best jig patterns. We've caught everything from snapper and kingfish, to albacore tuna and exotic species overseas on this versatile slow pitch/mechanical crossover lure. Here's Espresso talking about a hot new colour out for this season, the Rainbow Warrior.
Deepwater fishing for hapuku, bass and bluenose. Pete Lamb Special
Big, fat fish that are awesome to eat! Deepwater species make up a staple target for fishermen all over New Zealand, particularly in the colder months when snapper and game fish take a winter break. The catch is often made up of fish that are large in size, where sometimes just one fish can fill the freezer and provide food for a month. It can be very rewarding, exciting, and certainly provides a solid work session if you are not using electric reels. It also means that these giants of the deep will be making a one-way trip, there is no returning fish that are pulled up from that depth, as they are ‘blown’ from the massive change in water pressure and usually float to the surface for the last 50 metres once you have them up that far. Here’s where sensible catch management is required for the respect of the fishery and the protection of your own spot X’s for next time. ‘Deep’ water, means anything over 100 metres, and commonly down to 350 metres or even more. This means specialist tackle and techniques are required. Pete Lamb operates long term Wellington store Pete Lamb Fishing, and has been operating charters that prospect the deep for many years. Here’s a really comprehensive article on deep water fishing with specific focus on some of the Wellington region areas, but all the other information is relevant to fishing these species all around the coastlines of New Zealand.
Fishing | Time | Moon | Tide | Current | Weather
Hints & Tips
Here's a great look at all the key factors before planning a fishing trip courtesy of ol mate Briggsy from Aus. In this educational fishing series we look at time of day, tide, moon phase, current, and weather.
Epic Freediving & Snorkelling at Goat Island
In this video we take a look at an epic free diving spot North of Auckland in New Zealand. Goat Island is a marine reserve that has a unique biome and completely tame snapper. Snapper are very difficult to catch while spearfishing at the best of times, but the fish have become tame over decades of protection in the marine reserve. They will happily follow divers around and it makes for an excellent free diving location being that it is sheltered and often reasonably clean.
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