Winter fishing has been challenging due to weather conditions, cold water temperatures & less “bite times” which has meant catching less fish overall. That said there are still plenty of good size fish for those that are prepared to put in that extra effort. Some good fish have been caught drifting in deeper water but the best results have been in close with lots of berley & large floating baits on stray lines….. in particular out at the Mokohinau Islands which seems to hold good fish all year round. Pictured here is young Ben & Lewis who had their first trip ever out to the Mokes & did well to pull some good snapper out of the shallow kelp beds on the eastern edge of the main island.
The fishing around Mangawhai Heads & the Hen & Chicks has been awesome!….especially Snapper with most anglers able to catch their limit of good size fish. As always a lot of fish were released. Fishmeister is proud to announce that more & more anglers are happy to release fish & are not always focused on catching their limit.
The water temperature was higher than usual until very late in the season which could explain the large schools of Trevally & Kahawai which meant the King fish were also hanging around.
On Thursday Jay & crew were treated to a well earned break. Chadwick Builders generously provided the team with an all expenses paid afternoon’s fishing aboard Fishmeister. So the crew downed tools early at Tara Iti to meet at the Mangawhai Heads Boat ramp at lunch time. After a quick safety briefing Fishmeister & crew were safely across the Mangawhai Bar & steaming out to Taranga Island aka the “Hen”.
Most of the crew were used to catching blue cod in the Christchurch Region so it was a pleasure for all to be catching personal best snapper, in particular Shane’s trophy pictured below measuring in at 63cm with an estimated weight of 7kg. There was already a bin full of good size snapper on board so Shane did the right thing & released this magnificent specimen back to the depths to breed & perhaps fight another day. A great day was had by all with talk of returning to Fishmeister in the near future for a bigger trip to the Mokes &/or Great Barrier Island to target more trophy Snapper & Kingfish.
This Easter delivered great weather for the time of year enabling Fishmeister to get out on all booked charters……..6 crews in all including a successful fishing competition hosted by the Mangawhai Boating & Fishing Club. One of the elated anglers aboard Fishmeister won a cash prize for weighing in the 2nd heaviest snapper of the tournament.
All crews over the weekend enjoyed prolific fishing around the Hen & Chicks with an abundance of species across the board in particular Snapper, Kahawai, Trevally & a couple of reasonable size bonus kingfish! Monday afternoons crew Mitchell & his crew (Joel, Angie, Lauren, Megan & Maria) got painfully close to landing a Kingi of a lifetime estimated to be in excess of 20 kg! After fighting the fish for over 10 minutes we finally got it alongside the boat. Just as they were about to net the trophy fish it gave one final huge flip of its tail to break the trace. Although they did not land the trophy it was awesome to watch the magnificent Kingfish swim away to fight another day.
A full day out fishing with a crew change at half time made for a great day’s fishing for this group of 9 people. We headed out to the Hen & Chickens early in the morning and the party was in full swing pretty quickly. Everyone was busy landing snapper, mostly pannies, with a few kingis thrown in. Unfortunately the kingis were just under legal size so we took great pleasure in releasing them to fight another day. The afternoon crew were just as busy and managed to land a few larger snapper, so the sausages would have stayed in the fridge for a few more days.
The swell got up a bit for a while there, but the hen provided good shelter and all on board enjoyed the day. All in all a great day out.
Today the plan was to fish all day around the Hen & Chicks. However once across the Mangawhai Heads Bar the conditions were so good that Hamish & Estel made the decision to head out to the Mokes. They were duly rewarded with the kind of fishing that only the Mokes can deliver. So far away from their home in England, the Mokohinau Islands feel like a completely different world. The fishing was ballistic and Hamish and Estel had a great work out. Two customers came home at the end of the day very tired but very happy – thanks for joining us on Fishmeister!
A great day at the Mokes! The masterful French Grandfather/Grandson team (Esteve & Maurice) & their crew (Lian & Francois) landed a massive haul of fish. The ocean going Kahawai were huge. The Trevally were gigantic. The Bin full of fish was nicely topped off by the skill of Grand Dad & his jigging technique to land the best Kingi of the day.
Carl Gordon Electrical & his crew were lucky enough to experience one of those magical days at the Mokes. A light westerly breeze pushed us all the way there & on arrival the skies turned blue & the breeze eased off to variable. A very hot yet relaxing day which produced a number of good size fish including Kingi, Trevally, Snapper & Kahawai. The crew of 6 split into two teams for a bit of competitive banter………lots of friendly squabble over which team caught the most fish, biggest fish & most species. The “qualified” sparkies finally had to accept a very close fought 2nd place to the “unqualified” sparkies. Not a bad days work!!!
Dwayne Heemi & the crew from toughened glass & glazing company toughed it out to the Mokes! A hard bash out there into the wind & swell but well worth the trip as the weather came good….as can be seen by the photo taken by Groper Rock with Dwayne, Mike & Sonny Heemi showing off their Mokohinau pannies & a bonus John Dory.
Muzza & his team from Finesse Residential booked Fishmeister for 3 days of fishing the Mokes & the Hen & Chicks. Good fish all round topped off by day 3 when a few good size kingis were landed drifting around the huge schools of kawahai & trevally out by Coppermine at the Chicks. The Snapper are not as prolific as they were a couple of weeks ago but having the warm water in closer with the large schools of bait fish has prompted the Kingi action! Nice!!