NSW: Greenwell Point Offshore Fishing
Port of Call - Greenwell Point
Greenwell Point, on the picturesque south coast of NSW, has a respected place in the history of Australian gamefishing. Despite a lack of facilities, its access to excellent fishing keeps it a favourite port of call. Greg Finney gives us the run down.
Where Is Greenwell Point?
Greenwell Point is situated about 160 km south of Sydney and is a small coastal village adjacent to the entrance of the Crookhaven River, NSW. This area was one of the first in NSW to be identified as a gamefishing destination. With such a long fishing history it stands to reason that this region has produced some exceptional captures over the years.
Facilities in Greenwell Point
Unlike some other ports up and down the NSW coast, Greenwell Point isn’t big on facilities. There are no flash motels and there is no marina. There is also no readily available fuel from a bowser at the wharf. But despite this lack of facilities, Greenwell Point is a popular destination for anglers and is home base to the Shoalhaven Gamefishing Club. The larger boats use fuel cells in utes or box trailers and tie up at the wharf to fuel up. There is a service station at Greenwell Point where trailer boats can refuel and they also have diesel. There are a couple of reasonable ramps in Greenwell Point for trailer boat crews.
Species and Hotspots In Greenwell Point
You’ll come across all of the usual southern NSW game species out from Greenwell Point. Over summer, most of the black marlin and kingfish action takes place at The Banks, about ten miles east of Greenwell Point. The most popular technique here for black marlin is slow trolling live slimies around the edges of The Banks and out to The Block, several miles further east.
There are several canyons that can be fished from Greenwell Point and these include the Kiama, Drumstick and Jervis Bay canyons. All of these canyons and the associated shelf line produce marlin and mahi mahi over summer, along with a few sharks. The shelf line is littered with trap floats over summer and most of these hold schools of mahi mahi to 10 kilos. On their day, all of these canyons can produce great billfish action and it’s not unusual to raise more than a dozen striped marlin in a day with lures or livebaits during February or March.
Spring and autumn over the past few seasons has seen some better-than- average yellowfin action out around the canyons and shelf. Most of the school fish get taken on trolled lures, but fish of 40 to 50kg are regularly taken by crews who pull up, get a cube trail established and fish with light leaders and free-falling stripbaits or livies. Spring sees some good mako fishing out around the canyons. A few local crews regularly take makos in the 150 to 200kg range and they also account for tigers to 400kg over summer and into autumn.
Local Knowledge in Greenwell Point
The Crookhaven entrance is far from dangerous at most times, but it has claimed a few lives over the years. It can get a bit nasty in a big east or nor’east swell and run out tide, with large pressure waves and even breaking waves. Shoalhaven Volunteer Marine Rescue is based at Crookhaven Heads and gives radio coverage to all boats in the area. They have two rescue vessels based at Greenwell Point. You can get a 24 hour recorded weather report by calling Shoalhaven Marine Rescue on (02) 4447 4144. Slimy mackerel can be caught for bait on location at The Banks over summer and just outside the Crookhaven entrance at most times of the year. Other baits grounds are in at Tilburry Cove, a couple of kilometers south of the entrance.
Getting To Greenwell Point
Follow the Princes Highway to Nowra and then turn east to head out to Greenwell Point, Culburra and Currarong. The turn-off is at Kalandar Street and after a kilometer or two, this turns into Greenwell Point Road. It is about 15km to Greenwell Point and the road is well sign posted.