Georges Bay, St Helens - an Autumn Mecca

Jamie Henderson

As the summer months come to an end many fisherman see it as a time to pack the rods and fishing gear away and hibernate for a few months until the springtime brings some fresh action, but on the east coast this is far from the truth. The months of April, May and even in to June can bring some of the best Estuary fishing the East Coast has to offer and in particular Georges Bay St Helens. The warmer summer months can quite often mean periods of high winds and rough waters on the east coast making it difficult to have consistent days on the water however as we move into April we find the windy weather gives way to more mild conditions. Days can start off quite chilly with frosts quite common but as the day wears on this can mean beautiful clear blue skies, warm air temperatures, glass calm conditions and magic times on the water.

Georges River Sea Runners

Jamie Henderson
The East Coast of Tasmania, in particular Georges Bay St Helens, is fast growing in popularity as a saltwater sports fishing haven, not only in Tasmanian circles but also with anglers right across the country. It has always been on the map as the "Game Fishing Capital" of Tasmania boasting some of the best Salt Water Game Fishing Tasmania has to offer and now with the inshore bays and coastline fishing better than it ever has it offers sports anglers a diversity of species and environment unmatched by anywhere else in the state. 

Georges Bay salmon on the chew

Jamie Henderson
As an angler one of the joys of living on the East Coast of Tasmania, in particular Georges Bay St Helens, is having a plethora of salt-water fish species to target. The variety of fish being caught in this pristine estuary during the summer months now is nothing short of outstanding. Every year Georges Bay finds itself home to large schools of what I would class as one of the most popular sports fish this country has to offer--The Australian salmon.    

Family fun on the Tamar

Dan Clifton
Now the weather is starting fine up there is ample opportunity to get out on the water and find some fish. If you just want to get out and have some fun on light line and maybe take home a fish or two then this article is for you.

Tamar River Winter Submarines

Damon Sherriff
Although the Tamar is a Shark Refuge Area they are a regular catch and I always release them unharmed.
Gummy sharks are a year round catch in the Tamar River. They can be caught in very cold and even dirty, fresh water. Big gummies are also a great sport fish and really go on the right tackle. Gummies are located in many locations on the Tamar, and of course in many areas adjacent to the mouth. They can be caught in water as shallow as a metre. So land-based fishing is a real option. There are a few tricks in maximising your fishing success.

Georges Bay silver trevally

Jamie Henderson
When the words "Sportsfishing" and "Giant Trevally" are spoken most think of far north Queensland and long boat journey's to offshore reefs, but here on the East Coast of Tasmania we have our very own version. Georges Bay is home to Pseudocaranx dentex, or the silver trevally as it's more commonly known, which is one of the most prolific species in our estuarine waters. They are caught as juveniles by children on just about every jetty around our coastline and are the very fish that most of us would have cut our teeth on as a keen youngster. They can be caught with a wide variety of methods from simple bait fishing to saltwater flyfishing but no matter what the technique or size of the fish they are one of the best sportfish Tasmanian waters have to offer.

Shore fishing - St Helens

Jamie Henderson
As many of us fish on a tight budget these days, what with mortgages, living costs, family expenses, kids and cars etc, owning a boat is quite often low on the list of priorities. With this in mind being able to maximise your shore fishing opportunities and make the most of your feet is as important as the tackle you use to do it with.
What follows is a quick look at shore fishing options around Georges Bay, St Helens, and the tackle and techniques needed to take home a feed of fish.

Tamar River calamari

Damon Sherriff
Southern calamari and cuttlefish are one of my favourite species. They are both fantastic to eat and make great bait. Although calamari are related to the arrow squid I am sure that calamari are far smarter! They can be a real challenge. They go off and on the bite at the flick of a switch. In my opinion they are far superior on the table as well.

St Helens - a bay full of fish in my backyard


Jamie Henderson
As we move through spring, and summer looms ever closer, the days grow longer and the temperatures get warmer. We dust off our fishing gear, service our reels, respool with fresh mono or braid, check lures for rusty hooks - all the while reminiscing on seasons past, and wonder what adventures the new season holds for us. What species will we target this year, what new frontiers will we explore, what records will we strive for and more importantly how many days off do we have to get it all done in.

Garfish in Georges Bay, St Helens

Jamie Henderson
St Helen angler and tackle shop owner, Jamie Henderson looks at the garfish, one of Tasmania's favourite Winter fish.

Tamar Red Bream

Damon Sherriff

Autumn is a great time to chase snapper anywhere in Australia. As the water temperature starts dropping the bigger fish come on the chew.
The Tamar estuary is my home ground and is the most challenging area to catch big red I know. To catch big snapper on reasonably regular basis is very hard work. Preparation, bait collection, timing and the time on the water are all key aspects to make a successful angler. The thing that makes the Tamar so hard to catch big snapper is the low numbers of fish and the size of the estuary. Sometimes it feels like you are trying to find a needle in a haystack. But the reason that I keep fishing it is there are some very sizable fish lurking in its discolored waters. Some of the fish that I catch are well over the old-fashioned 20lb mark. I do believe that snapper up to 30lbs plus exist in the system at time to time.

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