Last weekend Merimbula Big Game & Lakes Angling Club hosted the annual "Grudge Match" competition between itself and sister clubs Eden, Pambula and Wolumla. This friendly competition ended on Sunday afternoon with a most enjoyable social event at the Spencer Park Clubhouse overlooking beautiful Merimbula Lake.
Merimbula also celebrated its winning of the "Grudge Match" Trophy from last year's holder Pambula. With individual anglers offering their prize catches from a group of 24 individual local species towards the "Grudge Match" Trophy, the final score saw Merimbula at 100 points, Pambula at 36 and Eden at 10. Next year the Grudge Match is to be hosted by Eden. It will be interesting to see what difference a year makes!
Good ocean flathead remain on the chew north of Tathra past Baronda Headland and up past Bithrys. Try 15 fathoms. Chinamen leatherjackets can be a problem, best option is to move to another mark. From Long Point and further north try 17 fathoms off Bournda Island.
For the more adventurous there are also good flathead at 25 fathoms off the Horseshoe Reef south-east of Merimbula. Salmon are patchy, best at Haycock and Aslings Beachs, try the rising tide morning and evening. Salted pilchards are excellent baits.
Morwong are biting well at the Horseshoe Reef, Haycock, White Rock near Kianinny and at the Pinnacle north of Baronda Point. They may take a bit of finding but fire up with most fresh bait as well as squid. Snapper remain patchy northwards but are more available from Lennards Island, North Head and south to Boyds Tower Reef and Mowarry.
Slimy mackerel are becoming harder to find inshore and small couta have taken over at the artificial reefs. Some good flathead have taken up residence between the reefs but getting a line down to them past the couta can be a real problem.
Luderick have become patchy at the Merimbula Wharf, best time the hour before dark. Calamari squid are being taken on jigs at dusk. Dusky flathead, flounder, bream, trevally, and some exceptionally large tailor are available in the Merimbula channel. The best time is the start of the run in tide.
In the main lake shoals of baby snapper are on the prowl and make it difficult to target flathead, trevally and bream. Similarly at Pambula Lake, while good tailor, mullet, trevally and salmon are on the chew, schools of small bream also make angling difficult. At Mogareeka however, drifting with live nippers can bring lovely trevally, dusky flathead, bream and whiting as well as pan sized snapper. Trolling with silver spinners and bibbed lures in the same area can target both tailor and salmon.