Gone fishing with Craig Harris

HAPPY DAYS: Ben Jones with a striped marlin of the Ulladulla coastline. Send pictures to craig@waggamarine.com.au or 0419 493 313.

HAPPY DAYS: Ben Jones with a striped marlin of the Ulladulla coastline. Send pictures to craig@waggamarine.com.au or 0419 493 313.

IT WAS around this time last year that followers of this column read about my first marlin trip.

I would love to rewrite about that trip as it is still very much alive in my mind – and I do have to say that this mind is getting more and more forgetful every day – but I hope I will never forget that particular trip because, well, just because.

Anyway, there have been a few locals heading to the South Coast in the past few weeks with varying degrees of success.

I can also say that I, along with a few mates and a few boats, will be heading back down there for another session in the not too distant future.

I am just waiting for the water to warm up a bit more, which will bring the bait schools, which in turn will bring the predatory fish.

As I said, there will be a few boats going this time so hopefully we will have another successful trip, and I WILL be writing about how successful we were.

Anyway, a lot of fishermen say that marlin fishing is a very expensive way to go fishing, but realistically it is not much different to local big cod fishing.

The cost of the boat isn’t really that much more than a good cod fishing outfit; the rods and reels are only mildly more expensive than quality cod fishing gear; and the lures, especially the new large lures for cod, can actually be more expensive than lures for outside fishing.

If you are catching your own bait for outside fishing it is even less expensive, while the distant travelled can be around the same and you still have the cost of accommodation for both.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying one is better than the other as they are both as fantastic as each other, I am just saying there are many different types of fishing, don’t limit yourself to just one style.

I love all styles of fishing - whether that be fishing 30-mile offshore fishing for BIG fish that actually want to hurt you; throwing or trolling a lure capable of landing a mega cod and I reckon 2018 is my year for a meterey; dropping a worm over the side of a boat tied up to a snag in the river looking for a yella; throwing a blade from the bank at Blowering for a feed of reddies; dropping some corn in Lake Albert for a mud sucker or throwing a pilchard behind the breakers at the beach for a salmon or tailor … the euphoric feeling is still the same.

I will tell you that a fairly high number, or low number depending on how you interpret it, on my bucket list is to fish the Bay of Islands and the three kings in New Zealand. I will be trying to organise a trip over there for around five days next year and for those who may be interested, or have this on their list, or even if you have done this, contact me and let me know best times and guides. I do know a few blokes who have this on their list, some probably higher, or lower, than what it is on mine so it will be a hoot.

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FISHING around is still going well with Blowering still hot for reddies with the odd decent cod being landed.

I had a couple of young blokes come into the shop during the week and between them they have landed five fish over the metre since December 1 (and here I am still trying to get one after 54 years).

A few yellas getting caught on the troll at the ’Juck. Talbingo has good reddies and some nice trout down a bit deeper.

Tantangara, Eucumbene and Jindabyne also have reported some half decent trout.

Hume Weir has been reddies central, while Mulwala has been pretty good on the cod and it has also claimed a couple of outboard gearboxes and electric motor shafts when windy and choppy.

The river is still fishing great with some good clarity in the water and still at a high level.

South Coast has seen a couple of nice marlin for a some locals and plenty of makos as well, so just get out there and go fishing.