As the team at BIG4 Ballina Headlands Holiday Park will tell you, the Northern Rivers sub-region is home to some of the best river and surf fishing in New South Wales. Take advantage of the team’s local knowledge to help increase your chances of catching dinner when you’re on holidays in Ballina. Here’s the late mail…
With or without a boat, the Ballina area has plenty of superb fishing spots that suit all anglers, from children to experts. If you are a boating enthusiast, you’ll be pleased to know the river has several good boat ramps with lots of parking and fish-cleaning tables.
If you are choosing to venture outside ‘the bar’, check with the local coast guard for weather and bar conditions. Along the river banks and beach there is a multitude of places to wet a line and catch fish. So come and join the locals, and don’t forget your sunscreen.
What to catch: bream, tailor, and jewfish.
Look for gutters with an opening either end, as this is ideal. Dusk and dawn are the best times to catch tailor and jewfish. In front of the Lennox Head Hotel area about an hour either side of high tide in the evening is best for large tailor and jewfish. You can catch bream day and night.
What to catch: Bream, luderick, flathead, and jewfish.
Bream love being around structures, for example wharfs and rocky edges, so fishing in and around the CBD area is suitable. For luderick, try the runout tide at Prospect Bridge with weed or along the walls with cabbage.
Monster flathead can be found in deep holes during winter, as it’s then that they are breeding. A 6-7kg find is not uncommon, but remember to catch, take a photo, and then release these big fish, as they are producing the next generation. Use live bait or soft plastics.
Jewfish love deep water through the day, and at night try next to the local RSL club or behind the police station on the Richmond River. Live bait, hard body lures, or soft plastics work well.
What to catch: bream, whiting, Christmas chopper tailor, and flathead.
Look for gutters or a sandbar on high tide where the water is making white foam over the sand bar. This will provide cover for the fish and food for bream and whiting.
What to catch: Flathead, whiting, bream, and jewfish.
Flathead can be found in shallow water coming into summer months. Use soft plastics, live bait, white pilchards, or prawns. As the weather gets hotter you will need to fish in the deeper water. For whiting, try Riverview Park or around the mouth of North Creek. The whiting are usually plentiful and make great fun for the younger members of the family. Use worms, yabbies, or peeled prawns.
To catch bream, look around structures in deeper water. Trevally love chasing bait schools, so look for where the birds are diving and use live bait or lures. Schools of jewfish can be found during the day in deeper water.
Follow these tips and we’re sure you’ll increase your odds of landing a catch. And when in the area, we’d love to see you at BIG4 Ballina Headlands Holiday Park