Unfortunately paid work has been interfering with my fishing again. Last Sunday night I found myself in Newcastle and luckily enough, I packed the travel rod. I have been using a Berkley Nomadic Spin rod when I am on the road. It fits in the travel bag and although the tip is a bit too soft, it works pretty well.
I wandered down to the rock wall at the mouth of the Hunter River at about 6.30pm. I walked out onto the rockwall, but it was a bit too breezy to fish out the front. I moved around to a more sheltered patch, on the south bank of the Hunter River and rigged up. I was using 3.8kg Fireline, 10lb fluorocarbon leader, a 1/8th 1/0 jighead, loaded with a GULP 2” Shrimp soft plastic in the Banana Prawn colour.
There were a few Pelicans chasing some bait and as the sun went down, there were a few surface bust ups. It was a fairly rocky bottom but there was a drop off a few metres out and I concentrated my casts in this area. I got snagged a few times and then had a few bites. After about 20 minutes I felt a bite and struck. I had a small fish on, that turned out to be a Tailor. I caught a few more as the sun dropped.
I moved further towards the mouth of the river but still kept losing gear to the rocks. I caught another small Tailor and then just on the edge of the rock line I caught another fish. I am not sure what it was (see picture) but it was spotted like a cod and I think I have caught similar around Iluka. I let it go and fished on for a while until it was dark.
It was fun to fish a different location and I would love to try the rockwall on a calm morning.
The unknown fish is an Eastern wirrah, Acanthistius ocellatus.
Not sure of its real name but we call them old boots, not a good fish similar to the arse hole of the sea. It’s name suggests how it tastes
Hi, I’d call that a wirrah, although I’ve never caught one myself. I think I spent a ludicrous amount of time as a kid poring through the pages of Grant’s Guide to Fishes and I still find I can identify fish I didn’t know I knew.