Launch Spots

Find out where to go Kayak Fishing in New Zealand with our exclusive Seaclear Chart files for spots all over New Zealand
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CoastalStan
Posts: 180
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:46 pm
Kayak Make: Ocean Kayak
Kayak Model: Prowler 4.5 Elite
Location: Red Beach

Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:39 pm

Thought i'd start and thread where we can review our favorite launch spots and areas and provide information so our fellow yakers can be prepared if visiting for the first time. Hopefully we can get a bit of a database going.
You can use the following format

Launch spot
Location/Directions
Access Times
Parking Availability
Boat Ramp/Beach/Grass bank/Other
Best or Worst Tides/Wind directions
Toilet facilities
Shop/Cafe/etc
Types of Fish or fishing nearby
Expected paddling time to or from spots
Experience Level Required
1, Newbie i.e Always easy and flat launch and return (Sullivans, Narrowneck, Army Bay)
2, Experienced i.e Possible onshore swell/waves (Matai Bay, Spirits Bay)
3, Pro i.e Probable Surf launch or return (Papamoa, Mt Maunganui)
4, Insane i.e you will turtle and get wet several times trying to get out before giving up (Muriwai, Piha)
Relevant VHF channels (eg Maritime Radio / Coastguard / Nowcasting etc)

If you can think of anything else important or relevant please add it.

INDEX Last updated 12/02/11 HLD

AUCKLAND - South
Omana Beach
AUCKLAND - North Shore
Narrow Neck
AUCKLAND - North
Leigh Harbour
Sullivans Bay, Mahurangi

NORTHLAND
Matauri Bay
Tauranga Bay
Last edited by Hairy Little Dwarf on Thu Oct 08, 2020 5:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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CoastalStan
Posts: 180
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:46 pm
Kayak Make: Ocean Kayak
Kayak Model: Prowler 4.5 Elite
Location: Red Beach

Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:51 pm

Location/Directions: 15mins from Warkworth through Matakana and past Omaha. Just before Goat Island.
Access Times: 24hr
Parking Availability: Reasonal amount but can be busy during the day. Best get there early
Boat Ramp/Beach/Grass bank/Other: Concrete Ramp with limited turning and no beach except dead low tide
Best or Worst Tides/Wind directions: Always Sheltered but check wind/tide direction before heading too far out
Toilet facilities: Excellent 24hr toilet
Shop/Cafe/etc: Dairy 500m from ramp, Cafes around Leigh and you can stop at Matakana on the way home
Types of Fish or fishing nearby: Snapper usually to the south and Kingis to the North East
Expected paddling time to or from spots: 10-30mins
Experience Level Required: Newbie launch spot but reasonable fitness level required if the wind picks up and/or tide running

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Hairy Little Dwarf
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Posts: 7127
Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2008 9:39 am
Kayak Make: Phoenix
Kayak Model: Hornet
VHF Call Sign: Red Dwarf

Mon Feb 07, 2011 10:05 pm

Great Idea.

Launch spot: Tauranga Bay, Whangaroa
Location/Directions: Take the Whangaroa road from the one lane bridge approx 5km north of Kaeo
Access Times: 24Hr free parking at beach reserve, classed as semi-secure (Never heard of break-ins in 20-odd years)
Parking Availability: No problems.
Boat Ramp/Beach/Grass bank/Other: Either down over dune edge, or along 50m sand track onto beach
Best or Worst Tides/Wind directions. NW surf comes straight in, all others okay if launch from NE end (At high, can launch in lagoon and paddle out through outlet) Surf tends to be very short dumper, but sheltered launch/landing found at NE end inside reef.
Toilet facilities: yes
Shop/Cafe/etc: shop at campsite
Types of Fish or fishing nearby: All usual Northern species, look at chart to work out what will be where ;)
Expected paddling time to or from spots: Stevies Island allow 30 - 45 minutes depending on fitness - Definitely doable for the average paddler
Experience Level Required
Probable onshore swell/waves - Although have frequently taken first timers in and out without problems, refer references to NE end above.
VHF: CG: 84 Ship to Ship: 62 Nowcasting: 20 or 21 depending on reception

There is a "zipper" between the offshore island and the beach which is an excellent training/playground for neophytes wanting to learn how to handle their yaks in surf.

Bottom is generally clean, look for craypots marking uncharted areas of foul.
Marlin have been taken between Stevies and the mainland.
Phoenix Hornet - Specialty Assault Craft

Dad! Dad! Look at his fish! It's way bigger than anything you've EVER caught! - Nosey 7-8yo boy on opening my icebox to father strapping down his $XXX Stabicraft 759(?) - Gold. Pure Gold.

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Hairy Little Dwarf
Moderator
Posts: 7127
Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2008 9:39 am
Kayak Make: Phoenix
Kayak Model: Hornet
VHF Call Sign: Red Dwarf

Mon Feb 07, 2011 10:25 pm

Launch spot: Matauri Bay, Northland
Location/Directions: Take the Matauri Bay road, about 20km north of Kerikeri, 8km South of Kaeo
Access Times: 24Hr free parking at beach reserve, however, sadly not recommended for late night or overnighters. For extended or out of daylight hours, contact campsite office and they will allow you to park car in (secure) grounds for $5.
Parking Availability: No problems.
Boat Ramp/Beach/Grass bank/Other: 100m to beach along formed (old) road
Best or Worst Tides/Wind directions. Any swell from easterly quarter rocks in here due to shallow, gently shelving beach. My favourite training ground for surf yakking when from that quarter.
Toilet facilities: yes, in car park over summer months
Shop/Cafe/etc: shop at campsite
Types of Fish or fishing nearby: All usual Northern species. The bay itself is pretty barren.
Expected paddling time to or from spots: Stevies Island allow 30 - 45 minutes depending on fitness to Motukawanui, 45- 60min to deeper, azure blue waters.
Experience Level Required
Depends on incoming swell, even I won't head out of here some days, others there's hardly a ripple. If she's grumpy, a launch can usually be made from Te Ngaere bay a little further north
VHF CG:84 Russell Marine Radio (0800 - 2000Hrs): 63 Nowcasting: 21


There are discrete patches of foul on the apparently barren bottom (according to the chart) that hold good fish - watch your sounder.
Safety Note
Cavalli passage can chop up (seriously) with the right wind/tide/swell conditions. I have frequently come back with 2m cresting waves.
If you're a novice and get caught out, stay out at Motukawanui - there is a DOC hut in Wai-iti Bay. This passage has claimed boats and lives when in a bad mood, and usually settles down after a few hours.
Phoenix Hornet - Specialty Assault Craft

Dad! Dad! Look at his fish! It's way bigger than anything you've EVER caught! - Nosey 7-8yo boy on opening my icebox to father strapping down his $XXX Stabicraft 759(?) - Gold. Pure Gold.

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CoastalStan
Posts: 180
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:46 pm
Kayak Make: Ocean Kayak
Kayak Model: Prowler 4.5 Elite
Location: Red Beach

Mon Feb 07, 2011 11:08 pm

Location/Directions: Past Puhoi then turn Right at Mahurangi Regional Park sign and follow the road to the end
Access Times: Gates Open at 6am but there is an alternative ramp slightly further up the harbour at Opahi Bay that is 24hr.
Parking Availability: Plenty but the early birds get the better parks in Summer
Boat Ramp/Beach/Grass bank/Other: Short easy gravel/sand ramp to beach that is Kayak only. No Boats!
Best or Worst Tides/Wind directions: Always easy and sheltered
Toilet facilities: DOC longdrops but always clean
Shop/Cafe/etc: Nothing for miles but there is a cake/dessert cafe on the way home
Types of Fish or fishing nearby: The Harbour is always good for Snapper and Kahawai. Paddle outside the island for the slightly more experienced or even to Motuora for a daytrip
Expected paddling time to or from spots: 5 mins - 1hr depending on you
Experience Level Required: Awesome spot for Newbies. Great place to take the family on a Summers day.
Last 2 hrs of the outgoing tide delivers plenty of snapper. There is a deep hole in the channel that usually holds fish but they can be anywhere. Very easy to paddle around and usually KY and birds out near the entrance. Occasional Kingi and JD close to the rocks. More experience/fitter paddlers can check out Motuora but allow 60mins to paddle there, lots of snapper around the other side.

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glint
Posts: 1303
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:40 pm
Kayak Model: 6m ?
VHF Call Sign: zmz6495
Location: northshore

Wed Feb 09, 2011 7:47 pm

I think this is an awesome thread. It would be great to correlate it into a printed guide. Maybe we could enlarge this one a little and and people wanting to try out new spots to them could see if anyone else has fished it previously and able to provide feedback or local knowledge. We all become blase' with our local area and do not think that others would be interested, so come on guys get those fingers working and share your (local knowledge). One spot per person and we would have a great reference.

Narrow Neck
Almost adjacent to North Head Auckland, about 2 bays further north.
Access time : 24 hr
Parking good large car-park
Boat ramp 3 lane concrete
Best fished at change of light,can be exposed to the northeaster.
Good toilets
Great shop for the best pies and ice-creams
Good snapper country
Some thing for all levels ,good safe beach.
You can pick between channel fishing ,rock fishing ,reef fishing or a drift over flat sandy bottom.
Tidal stream can be strong in the channel and often an afternoon sea breeze will come up.
Keep a good look out for shipping if working the channel.
ps Mental how hard would it be to get these sites in alphabetical order?Maybe relocate to the where to fish section.
Last edited by glint on Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:42 pm, edited 3 times in total.
SOF 6mt kayak
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bulldogod
Posts: 115
Joined: Fri Sep 10, 2010 7:56 pm
Location: Whangaparaoa

Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:08 pm

Excellent idea :y:

User avatar
glint
Posts: 1303
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2008 5:40 pm
Kayak Model: 6m ?
VHF Call Sign: zmz6495
Location: northshore

Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:12 pm

bulldogod wrote:Excellent idea :y:
Come on bulldog you can do better than that.Give us your spot.
SOF 6mt kayak
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kiwiladbrad
Posts: 2225
Joined: Mon Aug 30, 2010 7:56 pm
Kayak Make: Viking
Kayak Model: GT I think...
Location: Auckland

Fri Feb 11, 2011 9:16 pm

Omana Beach

Launch spot - Boat ramp or beach either side.
Location/Directions - Sits between Beachlands and Maratai. About 25 minutes from Botany
Access Times - two entry points. Nth end opens at 7am - 7pm but Sth end open all day/night. Google maps will help ya find it
Parking Availability - heaps
Boat Ramp/Beach/Grass bank/Other- boat ramp which can be used low and high tide or a foot drop from the grassy bank to the beach. From car to water at low tide is about 15 metres.
Best or Worst Tides/Wind directions - Usually onshore winds and blows across to Maratai. For the more adventurous Waiheke is over the channel.
Toilet facilities - yes clean toilets
Shop/Cafe/etc - 2 minute drive to Maratai shops for the ice and cold beer afterwards
Types of Fish or fishing nearby
Expected paddling time to or from spots - only snapper so far. Deepest is about 3 metres for roughly 500m then drops to about 9 metres into the channel but the best fish are in close about 150m off shore in the shallows.
Experience Level Required - newbie / fishing Omana in the past few goes has been like cheating. Easy fishing in easy conditions. Dont tell anyone!!! :lol:
Relevant VHF channels (eg Maritime Radio / Coastguard / Nowcasting etc) - dunno?
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Proud paddler of a Viking Profish 400

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Hairy Little Dwarf
Moderator
Posts: 7127
Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2008 9:39 am
Kayak Make: Phoenix
Kayak Model: Hornet
VHF Call Sign: Red Dwarf

Thu Oct 08, 2020 5:35 pm

Given there's been many tides since this was originally posted, I thought I'd force it to bubble to the surface - If anyone has any local launch spots they'd like to add, as local knowledge is always the best to avoid getting trashed in surf, or finding yourself paddling home against a 5kt ebb...

Primarily for launch spots where yakkers can put in, but feel free to add intel on productive areas out there if you wish.

HLD
Phoenix Hornet - Specialty Assault Craft

Dad! Dad! Look at his fish! It's way bigger than anything you've EVER caught! - Nosey 7-8yo boy on opening my icebox to father strapping down his $XXX Stabicraft 759(?) - Gold. Pure Gold.

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