Tauranga Fishing Report - 21/09/23

The good old saga of the good, the bad, and the ugly? Well, weather wise it has been damn good or pretty ugly, but it is improving with that spring weather.

A lot of varying stories with really nice snapper up towards Waihi Beach and in very shallow water – some fishing softbaits only in not much more than eight meters with fish up to 5kg.

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Down in the Tauranga area there have been very mixed results. Some charters with up to fourteen anglers and experienced fishers out on the far side of M?t?t? Island struggling to get more than a few fish each. Last Saturday in beautiful conditions I tied a similar area in 75 metres of water which usually has some good sign but this day, after covering six or seven spots, I did not even anchor up as the sign was so sparse. We finally fished in 87 metres and collected a nice feed of tarakihi – the anglers were happy to get that result after covering a few miles.

Last Sunday we fished closer in at 67 metres about two miles southwest of Astrolabe Reef and had a great run first thing with double and even some triple hookups of tarakihi. With just over thirty fish on ice by 9.15am the wind started to really get up to around 18 knots from the northwest before swinging southwest, so we decided to move into the Rabbit Island area which was very calm. I decided to try a small area of foul ground a mile off Omanu Beach which can have kahawai, john dory, blue cod, and the odd snapper – however, this time not even a touch by anything even after putting out a great trail of berley. This is the first time in over 20 years that we have been totally skunked at this spot!

That weekend there was the Tauranga/Mount Sport Fishing Clubs comp and from what I heard on the VHF it was a very slow day for most anglers but at least we were able to get out on both days. I have not had any reports regarding the harbour fishing at all but usually the trevally start moving in very soon, so not all bad. These fish are so underrated and to me are superb whatever way you want to prepare them; be it smoked, raw, or pan-fried. 

Stay positive! 


Russ Hawkins
Facebook Fat Boy Charters Ltd


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