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Published November 30th 2018
The Best Things in Life are Fishy
The one that didn't get away (by jongeek / Public Domain)
As the weather warms up, locals descend on Sydney's Fish Markets to grab bags of prawns, crabs, lobsters, oysters, salmon, crayfish, barramundi and even the odd shark. They haven't drained our waterways yet, as NSW Fisheries reports over 850,000 anglers enjoy fishing in NSW every year. With growing numbers of recreational anglers joining the fun, we still have many of the best fishing spots in Australia.
In Sydney, these are 5 of the best places to go fishing.
Gunnamatta Bay, Port Hacking
The top pick in the Sutherland Shire is the giant jetty at Gunnamatta Bay. Large waves and currents flow along the coastline, drawing surfers to Cronulla and sending scores of fish your way as you relax in the into the long cove of Port Hacking.
Alternative spots on land are in Darook Park (walk through Gunnamatta Park to reach it), and at the cove's tip on Hungry Point.
The area is abundant in numbers and variety of fish, with anglers claiming leather jackets, tailor, flathead, whiting, bream and salmon in the heart of the shire.
Fishing in Sydney is child's play (by Campbell Adam / Public Domain)
Gladesville Wharf, Parramatta River
Along the Parramatta River, Gladesville Wharf is proof you can have just as much fishing fun in freshwater. Cast your line from the northern bank, beneath the Gladesville Bridge in Drummoyne.
Start fishing in the late evening, after 8pm. You'll skip the noise and rippling wash from the fleet of ferries sailing up and down the river and spooking the fish. Choose a strong reel and line, so the larger specimens in Parra River won't end become new additions to "the one that got away" tall tales. If you're going for big fish over small fry, cast your line away from the bank, entice the deep water giants swimming five metres under the surface.
At the wharf, catch and release jewfish, flathead, leather jackets, yellowtail and bream. But remember to toss them back in the drink. There are warning signs about the pollution in the river, so fish for fun, not for dinner.
Brighton-Le-Sands, Cooks River
Along General Holmes Drive, south of the airport tunnel and beneath the old air traffic control tower, you can fish at the mouth of the Cooks River. Sit on the rockwall, casting a line into Botany Bay.
Head further south on the Grand Parade, stopping at your pick of the beachside car parks in Brighton-Le-Sands, Monterey, Ramsgate or Dolls Point for more choice fishing spots. You'll catch saltwater fish with clever use of plastic lures if you don't have live bait (squid or worms).
The bay is an angler's paradise, swimming with Berkley Minnow, Tailor, blackfish, trevally, flathead, whiting, salmon, snapper, tarwhine and mullet.
Fishing with a rod taller than Sydney Tower (by PeterKraayvanger / Public Domain)
Beulah Street Wharf, Sydney Harbour
Fish are await in the the coves and pools in the harbour, swept into Sydney by ocean currents swirling from the Pacific. These tidal flows setup dozens of spots along Kirribilli's rock walls for anglers to drop a line.
Sydney Harbour is perhaps the most popular spot for fishing in our city, so try your luck at different spots and times to find your happiest hunting ground. This is one of the most popular spots in Sydney for fishing, so experiment with different spots and times to find your happy hunting ground.
Whether you're using a rod or reel, you'll do well with plastic or live lures. As with most wharfs, it's best to fish in the late evenings or early mornings, avoiding the distracting currents of shipping and ferries. As a bonus, you won't get caught in the lines of the daytime hordes of anglers.
At the Beulah St wharf in Kirribilli's southern edge, you'll catch squid, bream and trevally. On the beach or on the rocks, you can also catch flounder, snapper, jewfish and flatheads.
Be careful not to take undersized fish. Sydney City Council rangers are quick on the draw with their infringement notices.
Clifton Gardens, Mosman
Chowder Bay in Port Jackson is a hit with walkers, beach-goers and outdoor adventurers but the local car park is pricey. Try parking in neighbouring streets, taking taking a short walk to Clifton Gardens. Rates are cheaper on weekdays.
Setup along the green parkland or start fishing at the jetty in the early morning. As the day warms up, take a swim in the large public baths and barbecue your catch for a picnic lunch.
Mosman's deep waters entice an aquatic bounty, from kingfish and yellowtail, to trevally, garfish and bream.
Stay safe and have fun with these tips:
pay the NSW Recreational Fishing Fee if you're fishing in Sydney's fresh and salt waters. There are options including a long weekend (only $7),, or a 3-year licence $85. Apply at the Department of Primary Industries.
wear a lifejacket and shoes with good tread when fishing from rocks
keep an eye on conditions as you fish, looking out for slippery seaweed, changing tides and large waves
obey signposted rules
throw back undersized fish
only take what you'll eat, within the bag/quantity limits for the species (e.g. 20 is the current limit for leatherjackets). Know the bag limits for saltwater and freshwater.
Where do you love to go fishing? Please leave a comment. We'd love to hear your ideas.
Are you serious, Gladesville Bridge as a fishing location. Please go and google the Government Health Warning regarding the fish in the Parramatta River. I'm sure you will then find a better spot near where the Govt Health recommends