Karumba, Queensland

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Karumba tides
QLD fishing regulations
QLD marine parks
GBRMPA marine parks
QLD stocked waters
QLD dam levels

Karumba is the gateway to the rivers of the lower Gulf of Carpentaria and, for those with suitable boats, some of western Cape York’s remote rivers.

Karumba is a gulf port, 72km by sealed road from Normanton. It has two boat ramps at the Norman River mouth.

The lower Norman River is not netted.

The main species caught are barramundi, threadfin and blue salmon, golden snapper (fingermark), grunter, black jewfish, goldspot cod and groper, mackerel, queenfish, trevally, catfish and mud crabs. Also present but rarely targeted are bream, flathead and whiting.

Grunter are hugely popular and mostly caught in the dry season, ending around September. Mackerel are offshore in the dry season (winter).

Jewfish can occasionally be caught off the beach at Karumba Point.

Offshore structure is hard to find, but if you do find some you will catch golden snapper and jewfish. Most action takes place along the channel edges and markers.

Big jewfish, barramundi and golden snapper are best around Karumba in Sept/Oct.

A popular overnight trip from Karumba is the 26 nautical miles to the anchorage within the Smithburne River. Travel between the mainland and Pelican Island only at high tide.

Grunter and salmon are caught out the front and along river mouth channels, and foreshores at high tide, jewfish are in the hole at the Norman mouth, with mixed species in the rivers.

Walker’s Creek is easily accessible as the crossing is on the sealed road between Normanton and Karumba.

There is limited access to the Leichardt, Flinders and Bynoe Rivers on the Normanton-Burketown Road.

The Flinders, Bynoe and other smaller waterways are all worth fishing.

Keep in mind the mouths of many Gulf rivers are usually shallow and constantly changing and should be crossed on an upper rising tide.

Plan the trip home for high water.


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Karumba fishing

Karumba fishing

Karumba fishing

Karumba fishing

Karumba fishing

Karumba fishing

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Weipa, Queensland

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Weipa tides
QLD fishing regulations
QLD marine parks

Weipa’s reputation as a barramundi hotspot is well known, it produces many other species, including sailfish and small black marlin.

There is sight fishing for the now infamous “blue bastards”, plenty of spanish mackerel, and tropical reef fish are easy enough to find.

Visiting anglers can catch more than 20 species in a week of fishing if both river and offshore areas are visited.

The reason the fishing is so good is twofold.

The main waterways – the Embley and Hey to the south, Mission and Pine to the north – are closed to commercial netting.

Secondly, the estuaries are vast expanses of flats and mangroves fed annually by a wet season monsoon.

This ensures a healthy population of barramundi, along with mangrove jacks, golden snapper, threadfin salmon, cod, jewfish, queenfish, grunter, pikey bream and more.

Rock patches along the Albatross Bay foreshores and offshore provide habitat for barra, mangrove jacks, golden snapper, cod and coral trout, as well as queenfish and trevally.

The shipping channel at the mouth of the Embley River can provide excellent fishing, particularly around Urquhart Point and near the lead posts that extend seawards for 10km.

Bait schools often shelter in the dredged channel, attracting mackerel, tuna, trevally, queenfish and cobia.

Circling and diving birds are good indicators of pelagic activity offshore.

Look out also for manta rays – they often are accompanied by mammoth cobia and golden trevally.

Cast tuna slices or lures trolled around the edge of the bait schools will bring results.

Good reef fishing can be found off Westminster, Pera Head and Duyfken Point.

Use livebait on the drop-offs in about 8m to 15m of water for best results.

Big jewfish are quite common off Weipa.

FADs have been located offshore for those who chase billfish, mackerel, dolphin fish and tripletail.

A detailed fishing map of Weipa is available in the North Australian FISH FINDER book.

Most Weipa visitors head straight for the estuary flats, fishing the low-tide gutters for barra, salmon and queenfish.

Weipa has open public access via 600km of road via Cairns. Much of the route is now sealed.


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Weipa fishing

Weipa fishing

Weipa 9-Mile Reef

Seisia to Weipa trip

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Bunbury and Dunsborough Artificial Reefs, Western Australia

Bunbury tides
WA fishing regulations
WA marine parks

The Bunbury and Dunsborough Artificial Reefs were installed in Geographe Bay in 2013/14.

The two reefs each consist of 30 purpose-built, 10-tonne concrete modules located within 5km of shore and almost directly in line with boat ramps, providing relatively safe fishing spots for boaters in Geographe Bay.

The reefs have pink snapper, dhufish, silver trevally, yellowtail kingfish, samson and more.

The location of the diving wrecks HMAS Swan (A) and Lena (B) are also shown on the map above.

There is good fishing elsewhere in this region. Busselton’s shallow beach has spotted and yellowfin whiting, flathead and flounder.

Boaters chase crabs and squid in the shallows.

Busselton’s long jetty is famous, with bluefin and yellowfin tuna, bonito, samson fish and mulloway all possible, with john dory around the pylons. The end of jetty is a sanctuary.

The Capel River river mouth has mulloway after rain.

The river has small bream, with tailor at the mouth. Peppermint Grove Beach south of Capel River produces tailor, whiting, herring, flathead, flounder and trevally.

Forrest Beach has most surf species, with mulloway after rain opens up the creeks.

Bunbury has The Cut at the mouth of Leschenault Inlet with landbased fishing for small mulloway, tailor, herring and salmon.

The inlet has blue crabs in summer, with spotted whiting, bream, flounder, flathead and herring. Harbour breakwaters have tailor and mulloway, with bream and whiting in the harbour.

Mulloway at night.

The Preston and Collie Rivers have bream.

The Collie has small mulloway.

Back Beach, south of the harbour breakwaters, has herring and tailor, with salmon in autumn.

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Busselton jetty

Bunbury snapper

Spearfishing Dunsborough

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Albany, Western Australia

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Albany tides
WA fishing regulations
WA marine parks

Albany is a popular fishing location because it offers safe sea access for boaters, and has beaches facing in different directions, allowing anglers to fish out of prevailing winds.

There is reasonably sheltered water near the town, along with a summer prawn and blue crab run. The annual salmon run occurs on scenic beaches, and the fish will bite until anglers are exhausted.

Sadly, rock fishing off Albany combines big waves and smooth, slippery rocks, a fatal recipe.

Boat launching is at the town ramp, Frenchmans Bay, Emu Point, Misery Beach and Lower King.

A few of Albany’s better spots are:
Bornholm Beach, accessible via rough 4WD track, produces salmon and herring.
Shelley Beach, accessible by 2WD, has mostly salmon;
Mutton Bird Island, most species, can be reached by 2WD to the carpark, and 4WD beyond.
Torbay Inlet, black bream.
Salmon Holes, one of the best salmon spots near Albany in late summer and autumn, accessible by 2WD. Avoid the rocks, people have drowned there.
Frenchman Bay, a good spot to take the boat, beach launching.
Princess Royal Harbour, most species for small boat fishos.
Oyster Harbour, bream in the snaggy King and Kalgan Rivers.
Middleton Beach; easy access to salmon fishing from town.
Two Peoples Bay, boat launching in calm weather.
The Sand Patch, landbased reef fishing for most species, a long walk down steep stairs located next to the local prison.
Normans Beach, salmon. Fishermen must park and walk.
Cheyne Beach, one of the best salmon beaches.
Albany also has the HMAS Perth artificial reef for divers, and there are several natural reefs in and near King George Sound.

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Albany offshore

Albany samson fish and blue groper

Albany 4WD and camping

Cheynes Beach, fishing Tourist Rocks

iFish in Albany

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Bremer Bay, Western Australia

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Bremer Bay tides
WA fishing regulations
Fitzgerald River National Park
WA marine parks

Bremer Bay has some of the best beach salmon fishing in WA’s south coast, with bream fishing in the Bremer River’s Wellstead Estuary.

A 4WD is needed to reach the best surf spots, but for the family fisho with a 2WD vehicle, Short Beach has a sealed road and good salmon fishing.

Fosters and Reef Beaches require high-clearance 4WD, but the reward is large salmon and trevally, with a chance of mulloway.

Many rock platforms in this area drop into deep water and produce samson, kingfish, pink snapper and mulloway.

There is a boat ramp in the lower Bremer River at Muirs Point.

The estuary entrance beach has mulloway when the bar opens. There is a marina boat ramp at Fishery Beach.

A 4WD track leads 17km north of Bremer township to Gordon Inlet, with bream in the upper river for cartopper and canoe fishos.

Further north, beach launching is inside Point Ann at Cheadanup, located on the rabbit proof fence.

This is part of Fitzgerald River National Park.

Boaters will find pink snapper, nannygai, blue morwong, kingfish, samson and more.

It is about 180km by road from Albany to Bremer Bay, with public launch sites at Two People’s Bay, Cheynes Beach, and Cape Riche.


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Fosters Beach salmon fishing

Bremer Bay spearfishing

Bremer Bay snapper

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Israelite Bay, Western Australia

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Daw Island (Israelite Bay) tides
WA fishing regulations
Cape Arid National Park
WA marine parks

Israelite Bay, part of Cape Arid National Park, has good beach and rock fishing, but high-clearance 4WD is needed to explore this area.

Visitors also need to be fully self-sufficient.

Israelite Bay itself is sheltered and shallow and has good whiting and flathead fishing, but beach fishing is better on the deeper 40-Mile Beach north of the bay, or around Point Malcolm 25km to the south.

Salmon is the main species around the rocks and deeper beaches, usually available all year, with silver trevally, herring, mullet and mulloway all a chance.

Storms can carpet the beaches with weed, making access hard.

Never drive over seaweed piles, as bogging is inevitable. Tyres must be deflated for the sand tracks.

Beach launching within the shallow bay is only for cartoppers or kayaks. Bigger boats are better launched elsewhere within Cape Arid NP.

The Eastern Group of Islands are 10km and 25km out.

For visitors who drive in from Esperance via Fisheries Rd (the usual route), the last fuel outlet is Condingup, 80km from Esperance.

There are shaded camp sites near Israelite Bay and at Point Malcolm.

More coastal camps are to the south-west at Seal and Jorndee Creeks, and Thomas Fishery. See the Cape Arid NP link above.

Heading north-east from Israelite Bay, well organised 4WD fishos can travel via the beach at low tide about 120km north to Point Culver, where there is more good surf fishing.

A track leads up the cliffs and back to the highway.

A Commonwealth marine sanctuary applies wide of Israelite Bay.


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Israelite Bay by 4WD

Cape Arid and Israelite Bay

Israelite Bay and more

Esperance to Israelite Bay

Driving into Israelite Bay in wet conditions

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Twilight Cove, Western Australia

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Twilight Cove tides
Twilight Cove on Beachsafe
Perth tides
WA fishing regulations
WA marine parks

Twilight Cove is a spectacular location at the east end of the Baxter Cliffs.

There are 70m high cliffs and a broad, sweeping beach.

The beach is reasonably shallow but good fishing can be had in calm conditions for salmon, whiting, mullet, tommy ruffs, mulloway and gummy sharks.

This is a remote location. Visitors must be well prepared. Take water and non-perishable food, tools, spares, recovery gear and satellite communication.

Access to Twilight Cove is for experienced 4WD drivers along the beach from Eyre and or via tracks from Cocklebiddy, 26km to the north.

Track conditions vary from rough rock to deep sand, and it may be impassable when wet.

If considering beach travel ensure the tide is below 0.6m, otherwise the beach will be impassable. Beware becoming bogged in seaweed or sand that is wet and soft.

The cove was named after the ship Twilight, wrecked here in 1877.


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Driving into Twilight Cove

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Australia’s best fishing spots

What are Australia’s Top fishing spots? Here’s our top six.

1. Dundee Beach, NT: Where else can you expect multiple sailfish captures in a day, along with great barramundi fishing, and easy access to red emperor, coral trout and more on the reefs. Did we mention the giant jewfish on shallow coastal reefs, as well as queenfish and trevally along the beaches and foreshore rocks. https://www.wikifishingspots.com.au/dundee-beach-northern-territory-fishing-spots/

2. Exmouth, WA: The number of IGFA fishing records broken around Exmouth demonstrate how good the fishing is. Not only does the Continental Shelf come close to the coast, with giant blue and black marlin, but there is the Ningaloo Reef system, and Exmouth Gulf estuary fishing. There is sight-fishing in the coral lagoons for bonefish, spangled emperor and more, trolling for spanish mackerel, and even a chance of a barramundi in Exmouth Gulf. https://www.wikifishingspots.com.au/exmouth-western-australia-fishing-spots/

3. Steep Point, WA: World class rock fishing, simple! Endless numbers of big spanish mackerel, as well as kingfish, pink snapper, tailor, and even sailfish and small black marlin. When you get sick of the rocks you have Shark Bay to explore, for pink snapper, squid, whiting and more.https://www.wikifishingspots.com.au/steep-point-wa-fishing-spots/

4. Yalata, SA: A superb surf mulloway area, with plenty of salmon and gummy sharks. Not great variety, but great beach fishing for the selected species. https://www.wikifishingspots.com.au/yalata-region-south-australia-fishing-spots/

5. Port Phillip and Western Port Bays, Victoria: Great bread and better fishing in these reasonably sheltered bays. The fishing has improved with better management. Lots of artificial reefs and fishing platforms. https://www.wikifishingspots.com.au/melbourne-victoria-fishing-spots/

6. Mackay-Rockhampton, Qld: There’s a bit of everything along the central Queensland coast, including stocked barramundi dams, the Great Barrier Reef, and large wild barramundi and threadfin salmon in the rivers. Rockhampton’s Fitzroy River is net free and now has superb fishing for trophy-sized fish.

What’s your favourite fishing spot or region?

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Yalata, South Australia

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Eucla (WA) tides
SA fishing regulations
SA marine parks

Some of Australia’s biggest mulloway come from the wild ocean beaches of the Nullabor.

This is not an area to be taken lightly because of its remoteness, but the potential rewards are great.

Visitors need 4WD vehicles and must be self-sufficient.

Permits are available to stay at various bush campsites behind the first dunes along the western end of the Nullabor coast, between the dingo fence and Twin Rocks, with public access available on the eastern end.

Two marine sanctuary areas apply to landbased fishos, as well as no-go zones for boaters – the no-go zone is much larger from May 1 to October 31 each year.

Visit the website www.environment.sa.gov.au/marineparks/About/zones/far-west-coast for details.

Campers must be bring fresh water, refrigeration and shade.

A compressor to reflate tyres after sand driving is essential. Alcohol is not permitted in the Aboriginal land area.

Access to the best fishing gutters requires either a good 4WD or quad bikes, as the distances are long.

The months either side of Christmas are good for mulloway, fishing the big tides of the full and new moons.

Use fresh or live bait and strong tackle.

Daytime fishing at high tide works well, with less chance of hooking sharks and rays than at night.

Salmon are caught in winter, and snapper and tailor visit the area. Shark fishermen will be kept busy.

For permits visit www.yalata.org and book in advance.

The permit camp sites go by the name of Hilton, Bob’s Kitchen, Jaxsons, Tjiti Tjukalu, Geues Hole and Coombra – see the map at the top of page. Vehicles can access the beach at Granites, Bob’s Kitchen and Hilton. The other campsites are close to the gutters so fishermen can walk.

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Port Fairy, Victoria

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Port Fairy weather and tides
VIC fishing regulations
VIC marine parks

Port Fairy is an all-round location with a river and safe sea access to excellent offshore grounds.

There are boat ramps at Port Fairy, Killarney and Yambuk Lake, with the last suitable only for cartoppers.

Regional freshwater fishing is in the upper Moyne, and nearby Hopkins and Merri Rivers.

Deep sea species such as albacore and blue grenadier are caught out wide, but most locals and visitors target fish in close.

Salmon are one of the more common fish, mainly targeted in the surf, but they show up everywhere. They are caught all year but are best in winter and spring. Smaller fish enter Moyne River.

Snapper are best in summer and autumn. They are usually around rubble or rock bottom but do enter the Moyne River channel in summer.

Coastal species include barracouta, caught all year, best in winter and spring. Coutta enter the Moyne River channel in winter but are more usually caught along the coast.

Quality black bream are caught in the Moyne, with the best fishing downstream of the footbridge.

Looking towards Port Fairy lighthouse. Photo: Robert Deutscher
Looking towards Moyne River mouth and Port Fairy lighthouse. Photo: Robert Deutscher

Cod are caught in the bay and upper estuary from Martin’s Point to the end of the channel of Moyne River. They are caught year-round but winter is best, and at night.

Flathead are caught all year, with warmer months best.

Yelloweye mullet are caught all year along beaches, with winter best. They are also caught in the Moyne estuary. There is no need to cast far for them in the surf.

Mulloway are caught in the Moyne River estuary. Summer is best, at night. Use small live fish.

Bluethroat wrasse are caught along most rocky areas and where and kelp is found. They bite all year, as do sweep, which like whitewash areas.

Estuary perch are caught in Moyne River downstream from the footbridge. Try snags or trees hanging over the water, or bridge pylons. Summer is best and shrimp livebaits.

Bluefin tuna are caught out towards the Continental Shelf, but sometimes come closer in. March to May is the best time to fish.

Silver trevally are caught all year round but spring is best.

Spotted whiting are caught on sand patches adjacent to weedbeds. Most bays hold these fish. They are best in summer and autumn.

Sand whiting are also common.

Port Fairy tuna fishing

Port Fairy gummy sharks

Port Fairy drone footage

Moyne River by kayak (not fishing)

Hopkins River bream

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