Tauranga Area Report - 26/01/23

Fishing good between inclement weather

Again, the same old problem with average weather limiting angling opportunities, but at least we have been out and talking to other locals about their efforts.

After cyclone Hale which produced swells up to nine metres one night, the blue water virtually disappeared from being three to four miles offshore to god knows where. Water clarity around Motiti Island was down to a metre of visibility, which is bloody awful.

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On a brighter note, the fishing even in that water out at around 26 metres was great at that time with some very nice snapper off the western side.

I had a charter out last Saturday in breezy conditions with a south-westerly up to 15 knots and, being 12 miles out, it was a bit of a balancing act and even more of a challenge trying to get the anchor in just the right spot. After a couple of attempts, we did get a nice feed of the good old tarakihi and two blue cod, with one at 44cm long which is a good fish for up here.

Later in the day, we jigged for kingfish, and although drifting fairly quickly in the conditions, we did hook and land five of these great fighters and kept three to share among six people. They were not huge fish with 85-90 cm being the average length, but still great action and a first for two of the anglers – great to see their struggles rewarded and big smiles.

Out wide it was positive to see some good-sized schools of kahawai so the big fellas must be close by, and the lack of blue water has improved a lot in the last few days.

Again the ‘cracked record’ – yes the harbour is still fishing very well for both snapper and kingfish. The channel edges at or near the high or low tides have been working best. This long weekend is not looking good at all with winds from the east around 25 knots with rain, so there could be a few vessels fishing in the harbour.

Mayor Island has still got some very nice blue water at 20 degrees and this temperature should increase with those easterly and north-easterly winds forecast as well. I dived there just recently and saw lots of pink maomao along with tarakihi, porae and blue maomao and even one or two red crays.

Keep smiling, as it can only get better as I am sure Chris Hipkins will relate to!

The Middle of next week (Feb 1) is looking great long-range, so just maybe we might get spoilt as we do deserve it.


Russ Hawkins

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