Winter Fishing Tips

Winter is a great time to go fishing in Sydney –right up and down our coastline. With the right gear, fish on the bite and less competition, they’ll be jumping into your boat!

While it can be chilly on the water, these cooler months can actually present calmer and more predictable weather in Sydney so it’s well worth planning a fishing trip – you’ll have less competition for boat ramps and your favourite fishing spot too. Off the beaches right along the NSW coast there are plenty of Snapper, Trevally, Luderick and even some Tarwhine. Fish the wash of the boat for lovesick Bream and keep an eye out for schools of Australian Salmon moving up the coast. Whether you’re fishing in a bay, behind Sydney or South Coast beaches or offshore, there are also still some Tailor around for some light gear fun – and the kids will love seeing them chop and the thrill of the chase!

While river & estuary fishing in the Hawkesbury, Georges River, Port Hacking and Shoalhaven may be a bit quieter, head out when the fish are feeding at dawn or dusk or on overcast days for Flathead, Bream, Leatherjackets and Luderick. Good sized Jewfish can be found in deeper holes in the Hawkesbury and Sydney Harbour and along rocky shorelines.

There are lots of great fishing spots up and down the South Coast and Winter is the perfect time to explore them. If you’re planning to fish on the South Coast, there are Salmon, Tailor and even Bonito around Crookhaven Heads, with Tailor, Bream and even Mulloway at Shoalhaven Heads and Winter can be a great time to land some Kingfish in Jervis Bay. Remember that it’s closed season for Australian Bass and Estuary Perch in NSW waters in June, July and August to help protect them and build up numbers, so release it straight away if you do land one.

Offshore the water may be colder, but Winter is the best time to fish for Gemfish, Pink Snapper, Yellowfin Tuna and Silver Trevally. Switch to lighter gear to make the most of fewer bites and head out early if you can brave the cold for a great day of fishing! While you’re out there, keep an eye out for whales as Humpbacks and Southern Right Whales make their way up the coast to warmer waters from May to August. Just ensure you stay 100m clear if you do come across whales, or 300m away if a whale calf is present.   

The cool clear winter waters can be a winter wonderland for anglers, and Fish Finders and Depth or Echo Sounders can make the world of difference to your day. Using sonar, they send out sound waves which bounce differently off fish, water and solid objects like reefs so you can more easily find fish, gauge how deep the water is and they often include water temperature sensors as well. It’s relatively easy to learn how to use an electronic fish finder and our team are happy to help! We have a great range of Garmin, Lowrance, Furuno and Humminbird LCD and colour fish finders, hand held GPS units and mapping products to lead you to more fish – so you can make a decision to keep moving or drop anchor. Our full range is available on our website or head into one of our stores in Carlton, Batemans Bay or Wollongong to find out which fish finder is best for you and your boat.

With your target catch in mind, rug up, take some extra layers to guard against the cold and enjoy your time on the water. For more advice on boating over winter or to request a service to make sure your vessel is ready for winter waters, get in touch with our team at Hunts Marine today!