How To Fish From A Wharf Or Pier

Fishing from a wharf, pier or jetty is a great way to relax and unwind. These structures act like a reef, giving fish a great habitat, protection and food. It is a great place to introduce kids to fishing and is much more accessible than fishing from a boat. 


In New Zealand we are lucky that we are never far from water and have plenty of shore-based fishing options. Head down to your local wharf, just make sure that fishing is permitted in the area. 

Rod and Reel

For fishing from wharves, piers and estuaries you will need an 8’ to 12’ rod with a matching spinning reel loaded with 10-15kg line. These longer rods allow you to cast your rig into channels if required. The other advantage of having a longer rod is when playing a fish, you can keep the fish away from the piles and stop it breaking the line from the barnacles and shellfish. We recommend the Okuma Carbonite Combo for entry-level fishing.


The Edge OctoFlash 5/0 pre-made rig is a great way you can fish from a shore-based structure. These rigs catch a variety of fish such as snapper, gurnard, trevally and cod. They are a twin hook leader rig featuring hooks which are self-hooking and work best when a 5-7cm strip of bait it used.


Tie the mainline from your reel to the swivel on the rig using a Uni knot. Attach a 2-4oz sinker to the bottom of the rig with an Edge Rolling Swivel and Snap. This will allow you to quickly change the weight of sinker to suit the current and depth.

Use berley to entice fish to your area. Lower a berley bomb in a berley bag on a rope so it is halfway out of the water, so any wave movements will help disperse the berley. Give it a good shake from time to time, to disperse more berley. Baitfish such as Mackerel, Piper and Sprats will be attracted which in turn will attract the bigger predatory fish. Use a Sabiki Rig or a small baited hook to catch these fresh baits. Kids love catching these baitfish!

Top tips

Top Tip 1: If you are fishing where strong tidal currents occur use a Break Away Sinker. This will hold your rig in place and will not be affected by the current.

Top Tip 2: If you are using softer baits such as pilchards, bonito or shellfish use bait cotton to bind the bait to the hook. This will make the bait more robust for casting and stay longer on the hook.


  1. Burnsco Sabiki Rigs
    From $2.49
  2. Edge OctoFlash Rigs
    From $12.49