Espresso Report April 17, 2019

Easter weekend ahead – aka the great migration, planes trains and automobiles alright! Being out on, or near the water fishing rather than meandering slowly along crowded roads sounds like a better plan. With the seasonal changes in full swing for just about everything out there (temperatures, wind directions, tidal current, annual fish species movement, young birdlife and much more) the various pointers are all to the positive, the full moon passes Friday and the SE winds swing away.

The shallower waters right around the gulf, from Gt Barrier to the Whangaparaoa peninsula, Kawau to Coromandel have produced some exciting catches, particularly of bigger snapper on softbaits, not surprisingly as they represent their perfect meal – a bite-sized live bait. The better the imitation the better the chances of fooling the fish. Imitation in the form not just of the softbait material, shape and colour but the action you give to make it come alive, or part thereof. Be especially aware immediately after a short retrieve or twitch of the rod, those few moments when the softbait pauses then descends in a predictable manner – prime time for a fish to make its move. Be 100% ready at this critical time and watch that line unfalteringly, any pause or acceleration, strike!

Mid ground to west of Anchorite has seen some reasonable workups, although mainly pannies not real thumpers in terms of snapper in attendance feeding, although it represents some reasonable action to chase down if the wind allows this style of fishing over Easter.

Gt Barrier and surrounds will definitely be perking up for most fish species, if the weather allows some fish hunting out and around the stunning barrier to the Hauraki Gulf, it should be high on the agenda. Good steady results on the Hauraki Gulf side of Gt Barrier, drift fishing the deeper areas provides a fairly consistent bite for those who are keen to fish this area. Try all sorts of tackle and you’ll be amazed what can trigger the next frantic session, whether deep water softbaits, inchiku style or microjig thrills and spills. Remember there’s not a lot for a fish to cut your line on, so go much lighter in terms of braid and leader than around the shorelines, the results will show. The mussel farms over the Coromandel side are still holding good snapper, they’re there patiently waiting for you to tempt them.

Kingfish v’s sharks is still a game to play in the usual spots as the apex predators are in all out hunting mode. High tide has been the better bite time this past week for targeting the kingi’s. Heavier weighted jigs could well be the best bet, with the stronger tidal currents this weekend more weight and a narrower ‘arc of action’ style of jig may be needed for better vertical jigging results. If the kings aren’t chasing the speed jigs, throw down the complete opposite, a frantically wafting 200gm inchiku or even a micro jig slowly fluttering down can be the temptation that changes their mind to take a bite.

The inner areas should have good sharp bite sessions over the next few days, large tidal currents at present can help with this a lot, as the fish forage new and wider areas brought about by the more extreme tides. Perhaps time to try a new spot over the extended weekend? A bit of prospecting with a flick here and there?

Wherever you may be fishing, and whatever your chosen style for the next few days, have a great time in the cool crisp air, and let Mother Nature take care of the rest. Enjoy.