Fly-fishing for Kingfish, Flathead and Salmon in Pittwater, Nov 2021

The misadventure began when Barry called me at 10pm the night prior to tell me he was a COVID close contact and could not make the fishing trip.

Waking up at 5am, I didn’t realise until I was well on my way to Pittwater that I chose to wear my hiking boots rather than my boat shoes. Coffee was purchased at the shop opposite the Newport Arms at 6am and on the water at 6:15.

The boat’s electronics were giving a low battery warning at low revs, nothing to worry about! At the first spot, we had some kingfish on the surface. Could not attract one on a popper or on a squid fly. Hooked one on a Clouser which was long distance released.

Next fished the dropoff, waiting one minute for it to sink to the bottom on an intermediate line. There was a lot of bait there and also caught a nice 55 cm flathead (surprisingly).

Fished two wrecks in the middle of Pittwater using soft plastics for jewfish with no success.

Then moved to Careel Bay. We saw a nice bait ball on the sounder with a couple of big fish underneath. Next drift hooked a big kingfish on soft plastic using spin gear and 5 kg line. The fish took us 50 m to under a boat and managed to get the line under the rudder. The fish took us anoher 50 m and we felt that we were in with a chance. Then as soon as I put a bit more pressure on the fish, it broke the braid.

Finally caught a kingfish a bit further up.

At this point, all 3 fishfinders on Justin’s boat went out at the same time. I wasn’t concerned until it was clear that the starting battery was using the same batteries. We suspected one of the power cables which looked a bit rusty. Justin has connections all over the Northern Beaches and managed to borrow a battery. Ducks followed up along the way.

His friend lives here, about 200 meters from where we broke down.

Caught another flathead while Justin was installing the battery.

Had lunch there and then chased some salmon.

They took a small surf candy (medium sized one didn’t work). The key is to cast at the thickest part of the rises where there is more competition. Strips should be as long as possible with a single continuous medium speed.

In the afternoon went back to the point where the salmon were on the surface. Managed to catch another salmon there but they are really hard to catch. One attacked a sugarpen lure which was surprising because it’s very hard to get them to take lures when they are on the small bait.

When I got back to the car, I realised I lost my car keys. Had to get my wife to pick me up. Overall, I still had a great day.