We are thankful that the warm, fine weather held for the Easter break, but this sudden cold snap really got our attention quickly! Beanies, uggs, flannos and fluoro windcheaters have been on the uprise since Anzac Day and it looks like they’re here to stay.
Despite the cold, the sea water is still quite warm and fishing has been really productive off the rocks and in the surf gutters between Bribie and Noosa’s North Shore. The cold snaps have worked to the advantage of beach anglers, bringing in cooler westerly winds and slowly dropping sea water temperature. These conditions are just what winter species like tailor, big bream, tarwhine and jew thrive on.
So it is definitely time to dust off the beach fishing rod and reel combo, or check out the beach rods sale (30% discount) at Swan Boat Hire and get ready for some winter fun. If you have never considered hitting the beach to hunt fast swimming, hard-hitting species, then read on to let the facts and figures of winter beach fishing tempt you out of that nice, cosy couch!
This change in weather signals the increase in winter fish species in both quantity and quality. While tarwhine and bream tend to hang in the deeper gutters, jew and tailor can be found in the gutters feeding and also off rocky out crops; this is the ultimate test for even the best angler’s skills. River mouths, rocky outcrops and coastal gutters are also frequented by the winter fish species and this is often the best place to wet a line as winter rolls in.
Beach fishing in particular is very productive during winter due to the abundance of species and ideal weather conditions. The general feel is locals and visitors alike are all keen to wet a line at one of the local gutters with a nice flesh bait for a bream, tailor or jew.
Most beach anglers use long purpose built beach rods with either a spinning or Alvey reel depending on their preference. Both have their own unique advantages when surf casting which will be outlined below.
Alvey (Side cast reel):
- They hold an enormous amount of line so if you do cast a monster fish that strips a lot of line out you won’t be spooled in a hurry.
- These reels are indestructible. Soak them in salt water, drop them in the sand and they keep on going. Simple construction, with minimal parts that are all made from anti corrosion materials helps to maintain function. Basic maintenance includes washing it under fresh water after each trip and applying oil onto the main shaft.
- Once you have casting down pat with an Alvey you can achieve good distance. These are good for bait fishing and medium speed retrieval of bait and lures.
- Alvey reels require specially designed Alvey style rod. The 1st runner must be extra large and place approximately half way up the rod to allow the line to flow freely off the spool and give longer casting distance. The reel seat is normally mounted low in the rod to allow anglers to retrieve the reel with ease.
Spinning Reels (thread line reel):
- These can come with high speed gear ratios, which are ideal for spinning high speed lures in the surf and also to pull your bait in quick to avoid snagging.
- Although they don’t tend to hold more than about 300m of the required line class and the drag pressure can be enormous. With high quality carbon matrix drag washer larger spinning reels like the Saltiga have up to 12kg of drag pressure, which is enough to slow down even the biggest of fish. Tough drags tire fish, not fisherman and therefore make fishing more enjoyable.
- With long cast spools anglers have the ability to throw greater distances and most newer reels are braid friendly, allowing the angler to throw even further with thin diameter braided lines.
- Spinning reel can be matched up with any fiberglass or graphite beach rod of choice depending on the species being targeted.
Beach fishing outfits vary depending on location, application and personal taste of the angler. If you need any further information on beach fish, bait, rigs or combos to target set bait species, drop in and talk to one of the knowledgeable team members and fishing enthusiasts at Swan Boat Hire plus check out the surf rod sale while you’re at it!
Jordan Munlos fished early on Easter Sunday morning at Yinni Street for a friendly fight with this 33cm grunter bream.
Billy Sheard welcomed the influx of bigger bream into the Pumicestone Passage and was happy with this 850g bream caught on live worm.
John and Gary fished the surf gutters just infront of Twin Waters with whole pillies to bring home these two flathead up to 63cm.
Reg Holland ate tailor for a week after pulling in this 3.7kg specimen along Alex Beach.