It's been steady as she goes this week as Hunter anglers warm to summer species.
Paul "Ringo" Lennon, from Fish Port Stephens Estuaries, reports plenty of whiting in the bay and along the ocean beaches.
"Fingal, Stockton, Shoal Bay, Little Beach, Hawks Nest - they've all been holding some nice fish," Ringo said.
"Live worms and high tides are the key, and we've got good tides early morning this week
"The sand whiting have been really impressive with some genuine horses on the bite."
Ringo has been running charters flat strap over the holiday and been getting customers on to a range of species inside the bay.
"Lots of flathead throughout the bay - real nice ones up to 80cm," he said.
"Bream have been attacking surface lures - it's a real exciting way to fish for them.
"Fish the real shallow structure on high tide, less than 80cm of water down to 10cm.
"Twitch and pause the lure across the surface and wait for a bream to think its a skipping prawn.
"It's a very visual and exciting way to fish. Often you are in nasty terrain and lose a lot of gear trying to get them out into clearer water."
There's been the the odd jew on the beaches, particularly down the southern end of Stockton.
Snapper have been fishing well outside with reports of fish up to 6kg coming in from Broughton up to Seal Rocks.
Conditions this weekend will be influenced by a light southerly and chance of showers.
Hardly wet, but definitely not a wipeout.
Max Galbraith, from Freddy's Fishing at Broadmeadow, paints a similar picture further south in the Harbour and Lake Macquarie.
"Whiting coming on the beaches, responding really well to Tweed king worms," he said.
"A few jew, bream and flathead biting in the Hunter River and lake and a few solid mulloway coming off the beaches.
"Nothing spectacular but then again, pretty consistent results for those putting in the time."
Max is looking forward to showcasing the latest Daiwa reels due for release soon at Freddy's.
"We'll have the 2020 Daiwa Saltiga reels, and the new rods from Samaki will be worth checking out too," he said.
"And of course you can't go past the Samaki Vibelicious lures."
A solid contingent of Hunter anglers, particularly from Newcastle Game Fishing Club, have made the journey to Port Macquarie this week for the 36th running of the Golden Lure tournament.
The week-long event kicks off today and runs to next Friday and is the first of the annual game fishing tournaments that swing down the coast.
Marcus Stanfield is up in Port on Awatea, with Shalea "Shaz" Townsend and Warwick Lambert.
Shalea's boyfriend Bryce Hudson, from the Northern Territory, is fishing on Sequana with Dave Kemp and Scott Morris.
Bryce has been banned from fishing on Awatea because of the boyfriend status with Shaz, according to Marcus.
"We're not even letting him look at our lures," a guarded Stansfield said.
Rob Hiland has ventured up on The Weapon, Jim "Rocket" Rocky has launched the Rocket and Jeff Thompon from the Bay has taken up Seka.
"A big contingent of us motored up today [Thursday] from 5am," Marcus said.
"It's already looking pretty good fishing wise.
"The guys from Sydney Game Fishing Club boat Tantrum boated two yellowfin today. One weighed about 70kg, the other 50kg.
"A double hook-up by all accounts with sickles clear out of the water.
"An interesting point is it is absolutely bucketing down up here with rain."
The Golden Lure traditionally kicks starts the game fishing tournament calendar for Hunter anglers.
There is a string of tournaments through January south of Sydney before the focus returns to the Hunter.
Lake Macquarie hosts the Big Fish Bonanza on February 8-9.
Newcastle and Port Stephen GFC host the Garmin Billfish Shootout February 14-16 out of Nelson Bay.
The NSWGFA Interclub State Championships then runs out of Nelson Bay from February 20-23 followed by the East Coast Classic, hosted by Newcastle GFC out of Newcastle on March 7-8.
Central Coast GFC host the Blue Water Classic on the same weekend (March 7-8).
For more information visit www.nswgfc.com.au.
Paul reports a black marlin was caught on the V Reef in 18-degree water this week.
"There's been the odd marlin about on the Shelf too," he said.
"Hopefully we get some good water pushing in close and things continue to get better as the tournaments kick in."