So what does your soft-bait look like in 50m of water in the Hauraki Gulf?
Well here it is – exactly what a curly tail LIVIE soft-bait looks like, mounted on the renowned Stingaz jig head. Check out the real deal for yourself: https://youtu.be/QjThFBw6QBo
Expect some unexpected full moon antics yet again this week – particularly after the previous week’s rollercoaster ride of weather and fishing fortunes. The minimal tidal current is now pumping up the volume big time – a bit like that NE wind earlier in this week. So all things considered, the fishing is looking rather promising for most species over the next several days. Some quiet periods of fishing were experienced by many over much of the Hauraki Gulf recently but change is a constant thing. Good things are coming and after this full moon, the bite should be on again.
Snapper had a well-deserved break from front line action, although most of the better-sized fish came from inner shallow areas – Rangitoto for instance (yes, just off the America’s Cup course!). The activity, both human and otherwise, was quite evident on the western side of the volcano. It was hilarious fun catching prime snapper with all the adrenaline-fuelled yachting close by. The smaller soft-baits like the Glowing Gurnard curly tail and the micro jigs (lead or alloy) worked their magic on some very good pannies. When fishing the inner areas, just check for the terns, and don’t necessarily chase them. Fish the area for both kahawai and snapper. Places like western Rangitoto and just out from the ‘no go’ zones along the North Shore bays up to nearly Long Bay are good areas to start.
Snapper are of course just generally hanging out right now, with a bit of a ‘neither here nor there’ attitude. Other species are a bit more active, including marlin and tuna out by Great Barrier, Cuvier and the Mokes, and trevally, gurnard, kingfish and john dory can be found a bit closer to home.
Midground fishing is ideal for a steady variety (gurnard, trevally and snapper). Smaller, faster workups have been just SSW of Anchorite, and even when they are not evident, the baitfish are there. Fish on the drift and you should be getting a nice steady mixed bag of fish. Use a variety of good lures when there are a few of you fishing from the same boat. There are a lot of baitfish further afield between Flat Rock and Little Barrier. They were mostly unattended by predators last week, but that will change – so expect some workups in the area and skipjack to make their presence known.
Along the southern side of Great Barrier there has been some fascinating surface activity with whales feeding on krill and lots of terns working the surface – but not much underneath in terms of what we’re after. I suspect that will also change very shortly with kingfish especially making the most of the baitfish balls seen on the sounder along that southern coast.
The kingfish even had some sleep-ins last week, but that tidal increase should fire them up more. It’s time to get your tackle primed and ready for these big green machines.
My overall advice is to go small. This means smaller offerings and less lure movement. Tease and tempt the inquisitive bite and you’ll end up with some beautifully fresh fish.