Days beginning to shorten is always a sure sign that summer is slowly ending, and that inevitably autumn is on the way. Variable weather leaves anglers searching for accessible locations that provide shelter from the unsettled conditions. The bottom end of Waiheke is one of these areas, providing quality fishing in the Hauraki Gulf. Late summer through to autumn can be one of the best times to target Kingfish here, as they feed aggressively trying to put on condition before the onset of winter. With an average size of 8 to 14kg - these are respectable fish especially for the Inner Gulf.
Livebaiting has been the most productive method, producing both the most consistent bite and larger fish. Waiheke Channel is currently full of small to medium sized Kahawai while the local mussel farms have good populations of Jack Mackerel. Be sure to keep an eye out for terns feeding - a sure giveaway of baitfish activity.
Choose a location with a good current flow and plenty of structure. Most of the nearby reef systems will be holding Kingfish at this time of year. A good burley trail and steady stream of pilchard cubes will be sure to entice their interest, while a livebait under a balloon should prove irresistible.
Topwater lures have been getting plenty of interest, however the bite has been a little slow recently with most fish following lures and not committing. Casting can be a great way of prospecting locations to check if Kingfish are present, before setting up and presenting them with a livebait. This strategy can be extremely effective, especially on a slow day.
Now is the time to get into some of the best fishing Waiheke has to offer, whether livebaiting or topwater your chances are high of getting stuck in to some prime Hauraki Gulf Kingfish.