Looks like the weather gods have changed their mind this weekend and decided to smile.
Early in the week, the outlook was pretty shitty, but heading into the back end it's shaping up pretty good indeed.
A bit of a southerly puff from Friday into Saturday morning with the odd shower backing off into the afternoon and switching nor-west into Sunday with light winds and lots of sunshine.
Very fishable and Jason "One For" Nunn, from Fishermans Warehouse at Marks Point, reckons anglers will be keen to take advantage.
"You'll want an early start Sunday because it's looking like a cracker and ramps will be busy. Sea conditions on Sunday look fantastic and there's been some good fish around.
"We've had a reasonable marlin bite inshore off Newcastle and Swansea and down to Terrigal. Stripes, blacks and small dolphin fish about on inshore reefs like The Farm and Swansea FAD, which are very accessible to trailerboats.
"Out wider on the Shelf the marlin have been in less supply, but the mahi mahi bicatch has been bigger
"We fished last Sunday on Fifi and got one 8kg, but Duncan Manderson, fishing on the reincarnated Running Bear, his new 35ft Caribbean named in honour of the late great George Clift, got a couple of cracking dollies in excess of 20kg each.
"Steve Norris on his son James' boat Lucky Strike got a stripe on Sunday and good catch of dolphin fish too.
"They found a floating tree courtesy of the flood waters up the coast and away they went."
Fish of the Week winner 12-year-old Jye Morton had a bad case of arm pump after landing his 92cm kingfish last weekend.
"Took him 10 minutes to get it on board and he was fair knackered at the end of it," dad Brad said. "I got one too, about a centimetre shorter than his."
The pair fished hard over the weekend as part of the Charlestown Anglers monthly outing and took honours in the Champion Male and Junior Boy Categories.
Other winners were: Jodi Terrill (Womens) and Macy Skinner (Junior Girls). Wore him out pretty quick.
Brad reports there were good catches of sand whiting up to 40cm. Something Jason can vouch for after great man Col Fraser dropped in this week with a plate of delicious fillets.
Zac Barker, fishing with his good mate Dakota Cusack, reports solid catches of bream and flathead in the dirty waters round the mouth of Dora Creek and some nice green-eye squid in the shallows off Moon Island. Local beaches are holding tailor, jew, bream and whiting, with patches of bonito showing up in close.
Local anglers had done all right as of yesterday morning at the Golden Lure Tournament up at Port Macquarie.
Lake Mac Game Fishing Club (LMGFC) member Phil McCloy was leading with seven black marlin.
Matt Fairlie, fishing out of Port Stephens on No Excuse, had the heaviest shark (estimated 330-ish kg)
The week-long tournament concludes today, with official results pending.
Big Fish revamp
This year's Hunter game fishing tournament season kicks off on Saturday, January 30 with the Lake Macquarie Big Fish Shootout.
Organisers have revamped the format this year so that it aligns with Covid advice and possible contingencies.
The major changes are it will be a one day event instead of the normal two.
Registered teams can fish out of their nominated home port instead of having to gather at Lake Macquarie.
And it will be a winner-take-all format across five categories, with men, women and juniors competing together.
"We've tried to simplify it in light of the ongoing uncertainties around Covid," LMGFC vice president Jason said.
"By making it a one-day event and allowing people to fish from their home port it alleviates the need for big groups gathering in one place.
"You can't hold a proper briefing or presentation under the present social distancing restrictions.
"Central Coast did the one-day, fish-from-home-port format last year and it worked well.
"Hopefully we can get back to a normal comp when the Covid thing clears up."
Cost per entry is $400 per boat, with a minimum two anglers on a boat.
For more details, visit www.lmgfc.com.au.
Covid has had a similar effect on other Hunter game fishing tournaments.
The big money Billfish Shootout, hosted by Port Stephens Game Fishing Club, has been cancelled and will be replaced by a smaller PSGFC event.
NSW Interclub, which follows on from that, has introduced the same type of "fish-from-your-home-port" format. Newcastle GFC holds their tournament in March in conjunction with the Australian International Billfish Tournament.