Finally, we had some fine weather over the weekend, with calm seas letting us get out and chase some species offshore.
With the Warrnambool boat ramp closed due to repairs, Port Fairy was the centre of attention as the nearest launching facility.
Shark fishing off Port Fairy this past week has been nothing short of exceptional, with many anglers landing gummy shark and school shark in the 10-25kg range while drifting over broken ground in depths of 50-70m.
Salty Dog Charters Port Fairy has been putting clients right on the spot, with multiple big shark being landed on nearly all their charters this past week.
Nate Monaghan landed his new PB shark with Dan and Phil on Sunday’s charter.
Further east, Lucas and Oscar Wilson with Leigh (Hungry) Anderson bagged three beautiful gummies to 17kg on our vacuumed squid and pilchards while drifting off Peterborough on Sunday.
Other bottom fish such as snapper, flying gurnard and nannygais have also been prevalent this past week and should only improve once the weather warms up.
It’s the time of year that we start to look forward to targeting kingfish, which proved elusive last year.
Reports are already coming in from places like Sorrento, where schools of kingfish have been spotted swimming past the pier.
So it’s only a matter of time until someone lands one from Port Fairy or Portland.
The Hopkins River has been a great option for people wanting to chase a trout or estuary perch in the upper reaches below the Hopkins Falls.
Minnow-style hard bodies such as Rapala Shadow Raps and F7s have been accounting for plenty of trout.
The estuary perch will respond well to top water lures such as Tiemco soft shell cicadas, Jackall pompadours and Tiemco Deruzze fished hard among snags and weed beds.
Lake Purrumbete has been producing some great browns to 9lb the past couple of weeks from anglers trolling large hard bodies in the 11cm range and heavy Tassie devils.
Down rigging these lures 30ft down will give you the best chance at tangling with these trophy-sized browns.
Bait fishing with scrub worms either under a float or off the bottom will give you the best chance at one of these fish also.
The Glenelg River has been fishing exceptionally well this past week for bream and mulloway for both lure fisherman and baitos.
Trolling live mullet has been accounting for most of the bigger fish.
Paul Ford landed three nice fish to 20lb in the last couple nights from the mouth to the border sign. Trolling lures such as the Daiwa Double Clutch 95s in the black-gold colour along the walls and shallow mud flats will put you in good stead for landing one of these beautiful looking and tasting fish.
A medium spin rod with braid around 20lb and a 20-30lb fluorocarbon leader will make it both enjoyable, but still gives you a chance if you hook that fish of a lifetime.
When trolling your live mullet, there are a couple of different ways to rig them depending on how the fish are biting.
If they are swallowing the baits whole, a single hook through the back just below the dorsal fin will be enough to keep it alive and also gives you the best chance of a hook-up.
If they are short taking the mullet, run a size 6-8 treble and pin it just in the belly near its tail.
Usually no sinker is required in this technique, but if you do require a weight make sure it’s as small as you can as heavy weights will make the mullet swim unnatural.
If you’re looking at targeting bream, either the bottom around Flat Rock, Pope’s Nose or right down the front on the blue water has been fishing well for big fish.
Rolling soft plastics and cranks along the sand flats has been the best technique for people wanting to throw some lures.
If you are after some bait for these fish, you can’t go past the cut crab fished on either a 00-size ball sinker or unweighted.
Port Fairy Angling Club will hold a free come and try day at the clubhouse in Gipps Street from 10am-1pm this Sunday.
There will be a free sausage sizzle and a raffle for the kids.
The club will supply rods, bait and tuition.
The event is being run in conjunction with target 1 million anglers and National Gone Fishing Day, the only day you don’t have to have fishing licence to fish.
There’s also a come and try day at the Allansford Angling clubrooms at Jubilee Park from 10am-noon.
The first 50 participants will receive a free fishing rod, proudly supported by Richardson Marine’s Tackle Shack.
Until next week, tight lines and best of luck.