January is red hot for plate-fish
Joe Allan | December 2016

Adrian and Anthony Melchior with a double hook-up on Richmond River bass.

This time of year is my favourite as the fishing is red-hot and you get to eat and drink like a starved pirate. Remember, there’s more traffic on the water than normal, so take care. Be patient and make sure you have done your preparation with all your equipment. Take your time at the boat ramp and above all, be courteous to all other waterway users.
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How to use crab lures
Steve Starling | December 2016

The author with an absolute horse of a black bream taken on a Cranka crab.

There are several different makes and models of crab-imitating lures on Australian tackle store shelves, but many anglers still seem confused about how to best present and work these offerings. Lures and fly patterns intended to imitate crabs have been around for many years, but there’s been a real surge of interest in these cunning crustacean copies over the past few seasons, thanks largely to the immense success of Steve Steer’s highly innovative Cranka Crab range.
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Warm water goldens
Michael Collison | December 2016

Three anglers caught these fish from a school using TN60 in 15 minutes – almost a full bag out!

After all the rain we’ve had in the last four months, Burrendong and Windermere dams are booming with life. The goldens are starting to spawn and school up around the point of the dam and at the starts of the rivers. Water temperatures play a big part in getting the goldens to bite. The dam water temperatures have been around 25°C, but if you can find warmer water like 27-28°C, your catch rate will increase by half. The best way to find warmer water is to fish rocky banks or shallow points.
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Local guns loving Iluka
Ross Deakin | December 2016

Afternoon winds haven’t dampened the fishing spirit around Iluka.

It’s a beautiful time of year in the northern rivers. Still with clear mornings and afternoon storms, the afternoon winds are unfortunate. That hasn’t dampened the local fishing spirit – great fish have been caught in the last month or so. Summer whiting are on with some amazing size fish in the river and beaches. A lot more people are trying out poppers with great success, but nothing beats fresh beach worms.
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No trouble catching a feed at Yamba
Dave Gaden | December 2016

Robyn from Kiama with her PB mulloway on Reeltime Charters

Warm weather and warm water have arrived and pelagics with them. January’s not just for the offshore fishos, but also the land-based anglers who catch some amazing fish off break walls at the mouth of the mighty Clarence.
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Don’t overpower that boat!
Wayne Kampe | December 2016

Here we see a small craft lifting it’s bow to plane. Within a few boat lengths the craft returned to a normal, flat attitude.

It’s a strange thing about human thinking: bigger seems to be better and faster seems to be more fun! Maybe it harks back to primitive times, when brute strength and fleetness of foot ensured survival.
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Water temperatures all about
Peter Phelps | December 2016

This bass took a ZMan StreakZ Curly TailZ rigged on a Bassman jighead – a deadly combination on deep fish.

January in Hunter Valley can be a dry and dusty time. The hot weather will bring the dam levels down, as evaporation takes place and water is let out to keep the rivers flowing and help irrigation in the lower Hunter. By now the fish will have transitioned into their summer patterns. Lowering water levels and hot water temperatures will drive the majority of fish off the edges. Deep water fishing will be the key to catching numbers of fish during the daylight hours this month.
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Feast from above
Glen Stewart | December 2016

Depth sounder technology today in some units allows you to target better than average specimens – a big deal when trying to separate the best from the rest in impoundments such as Lake Lyell and Ben Chifley.

The heat of January is a trigger for all things creepy crawly. Big hairy beasts with legs and pincers that lurk in shadows on the ground, green and black coloured doodads that chirp and sing in trees, almost to the point of annoyance, smaller insects with dainty wings and fine filaments that drape and hang out back – the good thing is, a lot of these critters end up in the water as part of the lifecycle, or just misfortune – and the fish are taking full advantage.
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Big fan of cod? Freshwater crocodiles about
Adam Townsend | December 2016

Pat Jarvis with a Beardy River redfin.

With the warm weather upon us, the fishing has been looking better every trip. It’s shaping up to be a killer season amongst the Northern Tablelands area. Copeton Dam has been sitting pretty steady lately, around the half full mark. The fish are more comfortable and getting into feed mode. There have been plenty of yellowbelly and cod caught on a variety of lures and techniques lately, including several big fish off the surface.
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