The North Wall Up Close and Personal
The north wall of the Seaway has a wide variety of environments well suited for fish habitat. It also has a large number of pelagic fish visiting on the way past and can hold large amounts of bait. This article will go into detail all the areas that make up the north wall and how fish feed within them.
Some only exist during a certain tide stage. The north wall is generally only fishable in S-SE winds up to 15 knots, any stronger than that and you get pushed into the wall too quick, its fishable in any strength northerlies but these create alot of dirty sandy water. Fish can still be caught in such dirty water but its not ideal.
Firstly lets cover the names of all the zones, these are names I've given them to make it easier.
- The Flats
- The Graveyard
- Rock X
- The Line(Tidal)
- The Dropoff
- The Face(Tidal)
- The Eddy(Tidal)
- The Edge
- The Runway
- The Rest
The Flats are the area north of the north Wall between the beach and the eastern most tip. It is a shallow area mainly around 3 metres dropping off to 10 metres as you get alongside the end of the wall. This dropoff zone holds fish occasionally and is where you will find most of the pelagic species such as Bonito, Mackerel Tuna, School and Frigate Mackerel. It also has Tailor , Bigeye Trevally, Giant Trevally, Longnosed Trevally, Yellowtail Kingfish and very occasionally Amberjack. The Flats themselves usually only hold fish during first light but this can depend on water clarity, the clearer the water the less likely fish will feed on the flats once the sun is up. Sometimes schools of fish will hold just past the dropoff and intercept bait as it comes off the flats on a falling tide.
The Graveyard is a shallow section of rocks located the the north eastern end of the north wall. It is so named because a slight misjudgement in sink time of any sinking lure will have it stuck firmly on the rocks below, I have lost more lures to this section than any other in the seaway hence the name. As to its fishing potential, because of its rocky nature it can hold a wide variety of fish but mainly Tailor and Bigeye Trevally. It is one of the few spots that has a decent wash area next to the wall in most conditions. Sometimes you will have to cast right up to the rocks(within 50cm), as the fish hold under this wash area and wont hit a lure that doesn't come close.
Rock X or Diamond Rock
This area resides just to the south of The Graveyard still right on the end of the north wall, so named because of a particular rock that sits like a diamond ^ and can be seen in all but the highest of tides. This rock provides a casting point of reference when working the edges of the wall. This spot yields Tailor, GT's, Bigeye Trevally and Yellowtail Kingfish occasionally. Fishable in both run-in and run-out tides. Poppers, metals, minnows, plastics and vibs all work here.
The Line (Tidal)
The Line only exists on a runout tide, if you take a line that runs straight along the wall and passes through Rock X then offshore this shows the edge of the current line on a runout tide. Many fish will hang right on the edge of this line darting in and out of the current to grab prey as they drift past. Depths range from about 5 metres at the base of Rock X graduating to 15 metres. Bottom is mainly sand with scattered rocks. Plastics and vibs work well here.
The Dropoff starts along The Line at around 10 metres then drops off sharply within 20-30m to a depth of 20 metres, many fish hunt and school all along the dropoff during all tides. It can yeild anything but holds large numbers of Mulloway, Tailor, Bream, Sharks and all species of trevally. Bottom is mainly sand and small rocks though there are a couple of big rocks ready to grab your lures or baits. Plastics or vibs are the tools of choice for the dropoff.
The Face (Tidal)
The Face only exists during a runin tide and is more prevalent during stronger tidal flows. As the tide moves along the front of the north wall it curves around as it enters the seaway creating an eddy, the eastern most edge of the eddy where the current passes is The Face. You can sit in the eddy and cast right along the face, or drop your lures right down the edge of it. Many fish hold in this area and grab prey as they drift pass in the current. Metals and vibs are the best lures for this area.
The Eddy (Tidal)
As the tide moves along the front of the north wall it curves around as it enters the seaway creating The Eddy. This area is made up with lots of rocks and sand patches and holds most species especially Mulloway, Trevally and Tailor. The best lures for this area is vibs, metals, minnows and plastics. Poppers do account for some big tailor in this area as well.
The Edge covers the edge of the rockwall out to 10 metres from the eastern most tip down to the beacon. This area can hold large numbers of tailor and trevally particularly during the summer months. Due to the high amount of rocks in this area, shallow diving minnows and poppers are the tools of choice, other lures are used at your own peril. Tailor schools do hold in close to the rocks and will usually be in a small area, once found they can give you some action packed fishing.
This area starts level with the front of the wall approximately 20 metres out and goes down as far as the tree line. Depths are around 12-18 metres, bottom is mainly sand with scattered small rocks. Lures of choice are vibs and plastics. Can yield Mulloway, Tailor, Estuary Cod, Bream and Trevally. Very popular area for livebaiters.
The Rest covers the north eastern section of the north wall zone, no significant structure to speak of the bottom is all sand. It is mainly an area where pelagic fish like bonito or mackerel may hold up for a short time. Depth starts at 5m and goes down to about 15 metres. Its always a good idea to sound over this area incase schools of fish are holding here. Surface feeding can occur here at any time so it pays to keep an eye on it. Occasional surprises like yellowtail kingfish and salmon may also turn up.
Click the picture below for a high resolution map showing all the zones.