Thalen's WoW Guide to the Stranglethorn Fishing Extravaganza in the World of Warcraft


For basic FAQ information, I'd suggest - it's not updated (not recently anyway), but the basic information about quests and items is still valid.

Fishing levels up a lot like weapons do...catching a fish advances your skill (sometimes less than a full point) no matter where you fish. Missing a fish adds nothing to your skill…so fishing someplace easy advances you faster than fishing in a tougher area. There's no use fishing in higher level areas or using a lure if all you want is to level up (unless the lure helps you land the fish where you're fishing...which can be helpful when starting out).

When you first start out, you'll get a skill point with just about every fish you catch. This doesn't last too long :P Near the 300 skill level, you'll need to catch about 10 or more. It gets slowly longer to get a skill point as you get higher skill...again, much like training weapons. in higher areas does get you better fish. You can catch fish that restores more health, as well as better fish for selling.

Fishing goes very well with the cooking skill...there are fish cooking recipes all over the place, so you may have to try looking them up (I prefer Most major cities and newbie starting areas have a vendor that sells recipes for fish, usually near where the fishing or cooking trainers are located. Higher level cooking recipes give you bonuses to agility, strength, spirit, health/mana's a nice bonus.   NEW: They've added recipes that restore both health and mana, and adds a nice mana/sec boost, though these are not very helpful at high level…but in the mid-level areas they're not bad at all.

Special Fishing Spots - The New Swirls

With the 1.9 patch, Blizzard added special fishing spawns that give you specific loot...from desirable fish to treasure chests to various elemental types of water items... For a general overview of these swirls, see the info that Pleather of the Stormreaver server collected.  For specific information on fishing for Patches of Elemental Water, see the page dedicated to that.

Stranglethorn Fishing Extravaganza

My credentials...I've fished in this contest since the first week.  I won the very first contest, as well as the 3rd week (the person who won inbetween, Vollus on the Horde side, also won the 4th week...gotta love good competition ;-) )  I don't fish any more, having won both the first place prizes as well as the other special prizes, all listed below.

This fishing contest starts every Sunday at 2PM server time. There is NO need to visit an NPC to get a quest, there is none. Just be ready to fish by 2PM. You CAN'T get the special fish in Booty Bay, and Jaguar Island (sp?) doesn't seem to spawn any of the special swirls you need to fish in, but most other places are valid.

As long as you can successfully land a fish anywhere along Stranglethorn Vale, you're skilled high enough in Fishing to compete. If you're getting 'Your fish got away' messages, you probably need higher skill (or need to apply a lure to your line)

1. At 2PM (continuing until 4PM), special dark 'swirls' will appear just off the shoreline in random places. You NEED to land your bobber mostly inside the swirl to have a shot at catching a special fish.

2. You can catch special fish, stranglekelp, Firefin Snapper, Oily Blackmouth, and possibly Stonescale Eels in these pools. If you're catching 'normal' fish, your bobber most likely landed outside the swirl.

3. If you're going to try to compete for the first place prize, you'll probably want to set your hearthstone to the inn in Booty Bay. That will save you time getting back to the NPC where you turn in the fish for the contest. The NPC's are located just up the ramp from the bank there. The middle NPC is the one that you turn in for the main contest.

4. Lures will NOT help you get more fish (unless your skill is lower and you're missing catches).

5. The quickest way to catch the tastyfish for the main contest is to fish in swirls that aren't crowded with other people. After a certain number of special fish are caught in a swirl, it will disappear, and you'll have to relocate to a new swirl. If there are already 3 or more people fishing in a spot, it's probably not worth stopping there (unless you only need a fish or two to complete the 40 you need).

6. Finding a swirl to fish at as fast as you can is a priority. The less time you spend running/riding, the more time you'll be fishing, so using a mount, or running as fast as possible, is essential.  Swirls pop up at random, so don't be afraid to cover area you've already fished...always look around (including where you just came from) before moving on to a new spot.

7. If you don't win (or, as in my case, have already won both first place prizes :-) ), it's in your best interest to keep fishing for the entire 2 hours. There are 3 special fish that can be caught any time in the 2 hour timeframe, and any tastyfish that you catch can be turned in for cash (23s per 5 fish, which can be turned in up to an hour after the fishing period, so turn them in before 5PM or they will disappear from your inventory).

8. Occasionally, I've had people ask/tell me to not fish in 'their' spots. Ignore them. If they get nasty about it, report them for abuse or something. They have no claim on any spot, you have a right to fish wherever you want.

9. If you shift-right-click on the bobber, it auto-loots your catch, saving time. Watch for bind messages though (something like 'Looting this item will bind it to you - is this OK?')…if you cast again before you click the OK button, you'll lose the fish. The special fish (other than the tastyfish) always give you this message.

10. The most difficult thing is figuring out how far away to stand from the swirl to get the bobber to land in the swirl. Experiment with it. If the swirl is in a little bay close to the shore, you may have trouble getting the cast to land in the water…step out into the water a little ways and cast back into the swirl, that is usually easier.

11. It's also useful to hot-key the fishing button somewhere. I have it on one of my standard toolbars, keyed to the '1' key, so I can cast quickly after landing a fish.

In my experience on Uther, the contest tends to take about 30-40 minutes, but that time will probably get a little shorter over time. There, week 1 took 38 minutes, weeks 2 and 3 took about 35, and I think week 4 was under 30 (not certain).

There will be a zone-wide /yell announcing when someone wins, and another at the end of the 2 hours (and at that point all the special swirls disappear).


Main contest (choose one of the following):

Hook of the Master Angler
Binds when picked up
Requires Level 60
Use: Turns you into a fish giving water breath and increasing your movement speed, but attacking or casting while in this form breaks the effect. Does not work out of water or at the water's surface.
Cooldown: 5 sec
Sells for 2 Gold 50 Silver to vendors

Arcanite Fishing Pole
Binds when picked up
Two-Hand Fishing Pole
42 - 63 Damage Speed 3.00
(17.5 damage per second)
Durability 45 / 45
Requires Fishing (300)
Equip: Increased Fishing +35.
"It looks like Nat Pagle himself used this."
Sells for 21 Silver 75 Copper to vendors

Notice the level requirements: The trinket requires level 60, and the pole requires 300 fishing skill. You can still collect the reward even if you don't meet the requirements, you'll just have to save it until you're ready.

Random 'special' fish:

You can turn these in any time during the contest, or for an hour after the event ends (5PM). No need to rush in for these, they're not 'first come, first served' items, and as long as you turn them in before 5PM, you'll get the reward. The NPC to turn these in at is in the same location as above, the left-most of the 3 NPCs. Note the fishing skill requirements for these (though if you can fish in STV, you're probably already there)…  Personally, I've held onto the special fish that I didn't need, and they were still in my inventory until the following week, so you should be safe to hold onto them if you can't get back in time, but to be safe it's best to turn them in before 5PM if you can.  The quest mobs won't be there to turn them in at during the week, so you'll have to wait until the next contest time.

Keefer's Angelfish gets turned in for:

Lucky Fishing Hat
Binds when picked up
Head Cloth
43 Armor
+15 Stamina
Durability 45 / 45
Requires Fishing (1)
Equip: Increased Fishing +5.
Sells for 33 Silver 96 Copper to vendors

Brownell's Blue Striped Racer gets turned in for:

Nat Pagle's Extreme Anglin' Boots
Binds when picked up
Feet Cloth
36 Armor
+12 Stamina
Durability 35 / 35
Requires Fishing (1)
Equip: Increased Fishing +5.
Sells for 33 Silver 60 Copper to vendors

Dezian Queenfish gets turned in for:

High Test Eternium Fishing Line
Binds when picked up
Requires Fishing (150)
Use: Replaces the fishing line on your fishing pole with a high test eternium line.
Charges: 1 (Expendable)
3 sec cast
Sells for 20 Silver to vendors