When we are not travelling, Ian’s other passion is fishing in the many beautiful waterways around Narooma.
Narooma is known as a fishermen’s paradise. You can enjoy surf fishing from shore for salmon and tailor, or on the inlets and lakes you could catch flathead, bream, garfish, trevally and whiting.
Whenever our family visits from overseas, Ian always enjoys taking them on a day’s fishing charter around Montague Island with a local charter operator. While Lesley enjoys a “tootle around the inlet”, whenever Ian heads out to sea, Lesley stays on firm land.
Montague Island is a nature reserve nine kilometres offshore from Narooma. It is home to a variety of wildlife including a seal colony, around 12,000 little penguins and around 90 bird species. While you can enjoy views of the Island from the boat, you are only able to land on the Island with one of the tour operators licensed to do so.
There are many charter operators available in Narooma, providing fishing charters, tours of Montague Island, snorkelling with the seals, deep sea fishing and whale watching tours.
Fishing for kingfish
Ian took our family fishing with John from Narooma Fishing Charters. John caters for small groups of up to seven, providing all the fishing tackle and gear, light refreshments and expert knowledge. Help is on hand to make your fishing adventure fun and enjoyable for all ages. They will even bait your hook for you if you need it.
The day starts early, at first light. You head across the Narooma bar into the ocean with the sun rising behind Montague Island. We first head to the live bait grounds behind the surf, before travelling out to the Island in the hope there is some current running, so we may be able to catch some kingfish.
We are using a 10-15kg rod and braided line and the kingies were certainly biting this day. Kingfish are an incredibly powerful fish, but the crew are on hand to help you land them.
If the kingfish aren’t biting we will head to the reefs to look for snapper and mowong. On the way back to the boat ramp we also usually stop to catch a few flathead.
Around the Island you will see the seal colony, who will enthusiastically swim out to the boat to vie for your catch.
Locals greet the catch
After a great morning’s fishing, we head back to the boat ramp, where the crew clean and fillet the fish for you. You are welcome to help out and Ian and our son, David are always keen to get in and lend a hand. The day’s catch is always divided up between the fishermen, ensuring a good feed for everyone when we get home.
Some of the locals always turn up to the ramp in the hope of scoring a feed.
How to cook a kingfish fillet
Ian cuts the fillets into 3-4 inch long pieces, cutting the narrow back bone out.
- Heat a frypan with a little oil until very hot.
- Put fillets on for 3 to 4 minutes.
- When cooked halfway through, (you will see the bottom half of fillet has turned white), turn over until the fillet is white all the way through.
- Kingfish is a very dense fish, so you will only need a fairly small serve each.
- Serve with some chips and a green salad and you have a fabulous meal. We usually serve with fresh produce from our veggie garden – a completely home-grown meal.