Welcome to the fishing location guide for Mount Martha Rocks. This location is widely accepted as one of the best land-based fishing locations around Melbourne. Roughly 60 kilometres or 1-hour drive from Melbourne along the Mornington Peninsula. Overlooking Port Philip bay with several kilometres of scenic and rocky cliff faces. Seasonally this location is a hotspot with great year-round fishing. It’s very popular for its squid fishing, but also has a solid reputation for big land-based snapper being caught from the rocks in the warmer months. You can also target both whiting and garfish in good numbers during the year.
Things to do at Mount Martha
Mount Martha is a scenic seaside township within the Mornington Peninsula. This stretch is a little less commercial and busy compared to other popular areas in the peninsula such as Rye and Sorrento. It does, however, have cafes, restaurants, boutique shops and a golf course. There are scenic walking trails, which allow you to take in the views, local wild and birdlife and historic buildings. In the not too far distance, you have the Peninsula hot springs, wineries, lighthouses, championship golf courses, maze and gardens, adventure playgrounds and much more. The Mornington Penisula is a great destination for families with many activities to suit everyone in the family. Nearby townships include Cape Schnack, Rye, Sorrento, and many more.
The rocks which are popular for fishing has ample parking on gravel stretches along the main road. This is a beautiful spot but probably not a great location for the kids due to its difficult and dangerous access.
Fishing at Mount Martha Rocks
Where to begin there are so many different species of fish that you can target at Mount Martha rocks and all of them require significantly different setups. Let’s start by saying that you can catch squid, snapper, whiting, salmon, flathead, garfish, gummy shark and leather jackets at this destination. Fishing dawn or dusk on the incoming high tide will be your best chance especially when the wind is chopping up a little. Quite often after a couple of days of strong breeze species like snapper will come in.
If your new to fishing and not sure were to begin than perhaps go with a general-purpose fishing rod combo which will allow you to target multiple species at once. This might be a 3-5 kilo fishing rod coupled with a 3000 size reel spooled with 8-pound line. You’re most likely to catch many small pinkies, whiting, garfish, leather jackets and flathead so you don’t need to fish too heavy but need to be prepared for the odd large snapper. If your specifically targeting garfish, whiting and leather jackets then consider using small hooks as these species have small mouths and using small hooks such as a size 12 long shank will increase your catch rates. We would also recommend berleying the area you are fishing which is a great way to attract garfish and whiting. You can buy premade berley or make your own using breadcrumbs and tuna oil.
Good bait options will include pilchards, silver whiting, pipis, raw chicken, squid strips, maggots, silverfish. You can also fish this area with soft plastics to target pinkies and flathead. Picking the right conditions will be important to ensure you can cast your soft plastics far enough out. Also, keep in mind that this area is all rock so you are very prone to having your sinkers and jog heads snagging up on the rocks. This might take some time to work out how to effectively fish this area without loosing to much gear.
Snapper fishing at Mount Martha rocks
In the warmer months, snapper will be the primary target. When the southwesterly and westerly winds are up snapper will come into this area for shelter and food. You may want to consider using a surf style fishing outfit to allow you to cast further out. A medium fishing rod between 9 and 12 foot is a great choice. I would recommend using a paternoster rig with a sinker at the end. This will allow you to cast out a good distance and suing either half pilchard, silver whiting or squid as bait. You may want to try using double snelled 5/0 suicide hooks presenting a full pilchard or silver whiting but you may struggle with the needed casting distance.
Good bait options for those choosing to fish with baits will include pilchard, blue bait, silver whiting, raw chicken strips and squid tentacles. So plastics can also work to good effect in these areas for pinkies and flathead. You will need to pick suitable conditions to do this particularly when the wind is blowing behind you helping your casting distance, or during calm days with low wind.
Squid fishing at Mount Martha rocks
Squid is likely the most targeted species at Mount Martha rocks. The area is full of rocks and weed beds which makes a great ecosystem for squid. It’s also an exciting place to walk along the rocks with an egi rod and some squid jigs. You can learn more about targeting squid here by reading our detailed guide on How to catch squid at Mount Martha
If your chasing squid then a light fishing rod between 7.5 foot and 9 foot in length is ideal. There are plenty of egi rods on the market fit for purpose. I have found myself fishing with a 7 foot 6 inch rod here with great success. Having a 300 size reel spooled with 10-pound braid and leader. For other fishing in this area, a general-purpose medium fishing outfit is ideal. This will allow you to cover a whole range of fish species. Perhaps starting with a 7 foot or 8 foot rod paired with a 3000 or 4000 reel spooled with 12-pound lines.
Squid jigs can be prone to snagging in this area, and we have found a lot of locals using the smaller size of 2.5 and 3.0 gram jigs and working them slowly to avoid this problem.
Check out a recent video of us fishing the Mornington Peninsula.
Known hazards at Mount Martha Rocks
The rocks and cliff face can be very slippery and quite dangerous. The access into this area is quite steep so care must be taken at all times. Make sure you wear appropriate footwear that will stop you from slipping. Always let someone know your fishing in this area and wear adequate footwear. Or even better avoid fishing there by yourself. Snakes are also spotted within the rocks at times so do be careful.
Additions and corrections of this location
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