Ocean Rhythms—August 2018

No sooner had a dry winter pattern been predicted in the last column when the weather gods drenched us with a few inches of (much needed) rain. It took some time but the dry, high pressure dominated pattern typical of an El Nino winter became established. At time of writing cold clear nights and warm sunny days with light synpotic wind patterns and small south swells had become the norm.

The school holidays, with the Skullkandy Grom Comp right in the middle of it, lucked out big time with sunny days and tons of clean, small surf. Most of the points had sand banks ranging from good to all-time and the kids (and Dads) were on it dawn to dusk. Crowds were gnarly but vibes stayed positive for the most part and everyone seemed to get a few, or a couple. It was a great comp for the local girls with Nyxie Ryan taking a victory in the Pro Junior division and a runner up place in the U-16 Girls and Ocea Curtis winning the U-12 Girls division against much older opposition. Epic stuff.

The comp was well run by local organisers and had some really interesting sideshows like live shaping demonstrations by legends like Gunter Rohn and Phil Myers.

The surf weather prognosis for the short/medium term looks fairly baked in at this stage. High pressure over the Australian continent with cold fronts sweeping into the Tasman sea means more of the same episodic small S swell pulses and good conditions. Not much to get the adrenalin pumping but should keep the wave count ticking over until the dreaded northerlies show up in spring.

Fishing in the town stretches of Lennox was dominated by the large sand bank which sat offshore from the Boat Channel to the Pub. Whiting, bream and flathead were around in the waters off the bank with jewfish and tailor caught at night in the deeper channels surrounding it. The bank eventually moved inshore and the fishing opportunities around it diminished. Jewfish were still to be caught off rocky headlands and in the river by live baiters and lure fishers with live baiting by far the more consistent method. Yours truly got a shock bouncing plastics off the bottom for jewfish one morning, hooking and eventually landing a 14kg Longtail tuna. July would usually be considered too late for a pelagic off the rocks but as the East Australian Current seems to run downhill longer and longer every year maybe they will become a year round proposition. Till next month, Tight lines and tubular visions.

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