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TECHNIQUE:

SPANGLED EMPEROR ON POPPERS SALTWATER FLY FISHING IN THE DEEP JUNGLE WALKING FOR BASS, COD AND PERCH

TOP TEN:

THINGS YOU DO WRONG WHEN FISHING

REVIEWED:

KILLALURE 2DEEP NITRO BABY VIPER TACKLEHOUSE FEED POPPER GOLDEN MEAN GREEN ARROW D.A.M STEEL POWER 330S

ISSUE 07 AUG 2012


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PUBLISHER: Hammerhead Media EDITOR IN CHIEF: Kosta Linardos kosta@hookedupmagazine. com.au COVER ART: Matt Crute

HOOKED UP OFFICE: 3 Newton Street Richmond VIC 3121 Phone: (03) 9428 3600 Fax: (03) 9428 3611 ADVERTISING: sales@hookedupmagazine. com.au

HOOKED UP AUGUST ON THIS MONTH’S COVER: Angus Gorrie with a 56cm bass caught while walking the jungle.

6 TACKLE NEWS 12 BOATING NEWS 16 THE TOP TEN 18 JUNGLE WALKING 22 SPANGLED EMPEROR ON POPPERS 26 SALT WATER FLY FISHING IN THE DEEP THE HOOKED UP REVIEW 32 SCENTBLAZER LURES 34 TACKLE HOUSE FEED POPPER 36 NORDIC STAGE AREAL 38 KILLALURE 2DEEP 40 NITRO BABY VIPER 42 DAM QUICK 330S 44 FEREI HL20/GOLDEN MEAN GREEN ARROW 46 TAIRYO NANO SPEED

LOGO DESIGN: Tim Haynes CONTRIBUTORS: Greg Carter, Damian Bowman, Justin Gray, Angus Corrie, Colin MacDonald, Jason Linardos, Aaron McGrath.

HOOKED UP ISSUE 7

FACEBOOK.COM/HOOKEDUPMAGAZINE All editions of hooked up can be read on all formats via our website at

GRAPHIC ARTISTS: Matt Crute, Michael Cusack

PG. 4

CONTENTS

SALT WATER FLY FISHING IN THE DEEP

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PG. 5


tackle News SHIMANO TRANX BAITCASTER

BIG FISH BASS

Bigfish Bass is the very latest release in the extensive Bigfish range of Australian Made Sun Protective Fishing Wear. This camouflage style shirt displays an aggressive Australian bass rushing the surface to engulf a jitterbug surface lure. The background depicts our typical Australian bush and backwater creek that our bass love to call home. The colour combination and camouflage effect make this shirt perfect for chasing our iconic “Aussie Bass” from the shore, kayak or boat. Every shirt in the Bigfish range is made from the highest quality Australian polyester, is incredibly soft, cool, durable, lightweight, UPF 50 and most importantly functional. These shirts are not only stunning to look at but you’ll want to wear for their comfort, style and sun protection.  Bigfish Bass as well as the rest of the range are available at many retailers or can be purchased directly from the website. RRP $89.95ea For more info vist: bigfishgraphics.com.au

GLADIATOR SMASH BAITS

Imagine a low profile baitcaster, but one with a prodigious line capacity. Well that’s what you get with Shimano’s latest reel release, the Tranx. A giant baitcaster is an interesting concept and you could be forgiven for thinking it would be unwieldy to use, but the Tranx’s low slung shape and light weight due to the use of a forged and machined aluminium spool, aluminium frame and sideplate means it’s a pleasure to use for long periods of time. Shimano’s EI anti-corrosion surface treatment means the Tranx is well suited to the harshest saltwater fishing scenarios such as casting lures and live baiting for mackerel and tuna, jigging and trolling, spinning rock walls, drifting deeper reefs — anywhere that a tough, dependable baitcaster is needed. The Tranx holds a whopping 420 metres of 24 kilo Power Pro Braid, and with the Dartanium II drag system, it’s possible to dial up 12 kilos of fish fighting power when needed. There are two models to choose from, with different gear ratios depending on your fishing style — the 500HG with a 6.6:1 for an all-out pace attack, or the gruntier 500PG with a more modest 4.6:1 retrieve speed. X-Ship double bearing supported pinion gear and High Efficiency Gearing (HEG) combined with the big, beefy but lightweight handle certainly provide plenty of cranking power. The presence of Super Free eliminates friction on the spool shaft so you’ll be casting lures and baits into the next bay, while Cast Control and Shimano’s legendary VBS Braking System means even tyro baitcaster users can be going cast-for-cast with the guns in no time at all. For more info visit: shimanofish.com.au

SMASH Baits are one of the most comprehensive ranges of soft plastic lures in the market place. There are 54 patterns and colours to suit all types of estuary and fresh water lure fishing. Each lure is made from our X-spand rubber technology which allows the lure to “stretch a mile before tearing an inch”. This keeps bight offs to a minimum and makes the fish strike again and again.

KOKODA S-VIBE

For more information visit: gladiatortackle.com.au

The new S-Vibe is a hybrid vibration lure design that features a tight wiggling action. Fast sinking, the S-Vibes can be easily fished at deeper depths than other conventional lures, yet still maintain a tight, fast wiggling action. Casts like a dream and the virtually bulletproof construction is your guarantee that the S-Vibe won’t be a one fish wonder. Weight: 14gm Size: 6cm

For further info visit: kokodafishing.com

OKUMA SIGNATURE SERIES Designed by the Australian Okuma product development team, the new Signature Series is guaranteed to suit Australian anglers in their quest to catch the elusive “big one”. Complete with quality US Alps s6 Ultra Light Guides; Fuji reel seat; and high density EVA Grips, all built on to an IM8 grade graphite blank. The Okuma Signature Series rod range consists of 15 models to suit baitcast, finesse spinning and medium spinning; and with its neutral black cosmetic, the Okuma Signature Series is an ideal match to any suitable Okuma fishing reel. For further info visit: okuma.com.au

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tackle News BERKLEY GULP 1.5 INCH HELLGRAMITE

The Gulp Hellgramite is an imitation of a nymph, now available in a 1.5inch trout fisho’s are lining up to get a packet! Rigged lightly weighted and drifted down streams and rivers the 1.5inch Hellgrammite is absolutly dynamite on trout. With fournatural colours to choose from and available in a new half size bag, the 1.5inch Gulp Hellgramite is a no brainer for keen trout anglers. Berkley GULP is a water based bait that has up to 400 times more scent dispersion than other flavoured soft baits. Being water based, the scent is dispersed rapidly down current making it easily found by fish and the soft texture and inbuilt flavour makes fish hold on longer converting more strikes to hook-ups. GULP is also bio-degradable and if left in the water or ingested by a fish, will breakdown to all natural components leaving no harmful residue or side effects. h

D.A.M. VITTATUS 100 BAITCASTER REELS

The high-speed DAM Vittatus low profile baitcasting reel features a lightweight, corrosion resistant body with aluminium an spool. The magnetic cast control ensures trouble free long distance casting every time. Perfectly suited for catching bass to barra. Tried & Tested in Australian fishing conditions this is a quality and affordable baitcaster. 9 Bearings Instant anti Vibro-System Aluminium Spool Multi-Disc Drag 6.3:1 gear ratio 150m/20lb Braid RRP: $149.95

For more information visit: www.berkley-fishing.com.au

EVOLUTION JIG HEADS

For more information please: wilsonfishing.com.au

SASAME ESA BIO-JIGS

Evolution jig heads, designed to increase the strike zone of all your soft plastics and increase your hook up rate by eliminating short strikes. We are proud to announce that we are unveiling our new HD range at this years AFTA trade show. This heavy duty range is designed for your top end Barra estuary fishing and will also accommodate some shallow water snapper style angling. The lengths are available in 45mm 55mm and 65mm with weights 1/8 , 1/6 and 1/4oz. These lengths will suit your 4”, 5” and six inch soft plastics. Packs come complete with 4 jig heads and 4 #1 sized double hooks, chemically sharpened and built from 1.3mm high carbon steel. This HD range of Evo jig heads are nickel coated for corrosive resistance and will help to distinguish from your estuary Evo`s that are black nickel in colour. The tow eyes are made large enough to accommodate any clip if you chose to attach a treble or your favourite single hook. Any hook on any plastic! The choices are endless with Evolution jig heads. Probe , insert, attach. Become part of TEAM EVOLUTION

JAPANESE company SASAME are proud to announce a breakthrough Angling technique; a synthesis of Bioplastic and Sabiki style rigging that will accelerate the “capture rate” of all fish species. Applications for this new technology are Beach and Shore based Angling. Anglers with access to watercraft will find this new style of fishing amazingly productive. The equation is simple… whatever style of fishing the angler engages in the rate of capture will dramatically rise. The key is the presentation of a natural 100% biological bait/soft plastic worm with a presentation that is irresistible to fish. A further benefit of this technique is that expensive live bait (worms) is replaced with inexpensive natural 100% biological bait/soft plastic. Further, the “worms” that are supplied with every package can be substituted with live bait, dead bait or the anglers choice in other plastics, be those plastics, organic or synthetic. This isn’t just an evolution in angling technique this is truly a revolution! This new offering form the Worlds most innovation fishing tackle manufacture Sasame will alter expectations of what makes a “good-day” on the water. You are guaranteed to catch more fish. The difference will be noted from the first cast. RRP is $15 per packet.

For more info visit: evolutionjigheads.com.au For further info contact: Viva Fishing on 02 9723 1666.

DUO RYUKI The developmental concept for the Spearhead Ryuki was to create a lure that was suited to medium to large size rivers for targeting various species of trout by casting down stream and retrieving across. The semi-long lip to grip the water and flat-side body with a low centre of gravity and fixed weight settings have equipped the lure with a high level of swimming performance in the strong flow of the main stream. Its action initiation is prompt and can handle consecutive twitching through rod work. Some lures lose the casting ability through increased body size but by controlling the height of the body, we have managed to enhance castability. The Ryuki has an excellent swim balance in order to tackle the intricate flow of a stream. For more info visit: swldistributions.com.au PG. 8

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tackle News OWNER FLASHIE SWIMMER

SURECATCH HPS DIGITAL SCALE

KOKODA AIRSTREAM PANTS

The Flashie Swimmer with Owner’s Twistlock Centering-Pin Spring (CPS-patent pending) is a unique setup for rigging soft swimbaits, flukes, and other swimming plastics. The spinner blade is attached to a non-moveable weight that keels a rigged soft plastic perfectly for use as an ideal “search” bait. In lieu of spinnerbaits or crankbaits, the flashy swimmer can be used as an alternative to cover a lot of water in a short time. A multitude of presentations can be achieved by switching baits and the speed of retrieval. The added weight helps sink or “swim” the rigged bait down into the strike zone, while the blade adds a fish-attracting flash. The wire pivots where attached to the weight, but the design of the molded lead keeps the wire and blade riding horizontal during a steady retrieve. Attached to the wire is a #3 hammered nickel-finished willowleaf blade, rigged with a dual mini swivel. Other features include an “open” gap for more positive hook sets, a XX-strong forged shank, Super Needle Point, and black chrome finish. For more information visit: www.purefishing.com.au

WILDFISH SALT WATER FLY PACK Wildfish’ Fly packs take the guesswork out of fly selection. The flies have been carefully selected and endorsed by renowned fly fisherman Peter Morse. There are 3 Saltwater packs that each contain 10 specially selected Felty’s flies. This range of flies can cover many saltwater species. Use the deceivers for larger fish and the Clousers when a sparse fly is needed or you need to fish deep. Many different species in many different situations will eat these flies. The sprats are great for whiting, salmon, tuna, use a fast retrieve.Use the smaller flies when the fish are fussy and especially for bream.

Surecatch have just released a set of digital scales with a difference. It has a memory storage function that can store up to eight weights, this is great for remembering that catch from last weekend. A back light display provides easy reading in the sun and four minute shut off time means you want run out of battery if you forget to turn it off in the heat of the moment! Metric Conversion Back Light Display Memory Storage up to 8 fish 4 Minute Auto shut off Water Resistant Durable ABS Housing Sheath and Belt Strap included (Takes 2 x AA Batteries not included) Max Weight 50lb/22kg RRP: $39.95

Sizes: Small to XXL Colours: Green/Black and Charcoal/ Blue

For more info visit: wilsonfishing.com.au

For further info visit: jmgillies.com.au

The common fishermen’s choice of old jeans and tracksuit pants aren’t really the best form of fishing apparel. There aren’t really a lot of affordable options on the market but kokoda have released a very comfortable and fishing friendly alternative. Featuring a very breathable light and  waterproof material you will hardly even know you are wearing them. The soft elastic waist is very comfortable to wear on a long days fishing and the Airstream fabric with fully factory taped seams wont waer and tear out in the harsh Australian sun. The Airstream pants are easy to move in and will keep you dry in extreme weather events, whilst the breathable Airstream fabric wicks away body perspiration. If you start to really get hot you can roll the legs up into shorts and pin them up with the very convenient tab and buttons.

For more information visit: kokodafishing.com.au

IKUZA XT 180

The new XT180 from Ikuza is a lure built with the single purpose of targeting big barramundi. A floating 18cm slim profiled minnow it has all the features to land big barra. Equipped with a big sonic rattle, and a range of gorgeous paint jobs, barra wont be able to resist the XT 180 on the troll or in a cast and retrieve situation. Ultra strong Ikuza trebles and through-wire construction mean this lure can handle big barra and heavy drag pressure. Available now at your local tackle store. For more info call: OTM Sporttsfishing on (02) 95241557 WWW.HOOKEDUPMAGAZINE.COM.AU

AUGUST 2012

ISSUE 7 HOOKED UP

PG. 9


tackle News PLANO FLEX’N GO SATCHELS

SCHNEIDER KLEAR LINE Exciting news for applications where multiple rods are used!! Schneider now has seven different coloured mono lines across a huge range of breaking strains with all seven colours are available in the one breaking strain. This is great when bottom bouncing with multiple rods using the same breaking strain, you can easily sort out inevitable tangles and crossed lines and keep track of which rod has which bait when using multiple baits. It’s also very handy when trolling multiple rods of different breaking starins as you can assign certain colours to certain rods in your spread, this greatly aids in sorting crossed lines. Schneider Klear Line is available from 4lb to 150lb in Green, Multi, Pink, Blue, Fluro Yellow, White and also comes in Red in breaking strains from 4lb to 25lb. For more information visit: schneiderfishinglines.com.au

The new Plano Flex’N Go Satchels were designed to pack a big punch in a compact space, giving anglers flexibility and visibility when it comes to tackle storage. The shell of this multi-functional tackle system is a double-sided storage box with a deep bin on one side that has four to nine adjustable compartments. The other side can hold two 3600-size StowAway utility boxes, which can be secured in place with a flexible strap for each box. The fact that you can customize the Flex’N Go Satchel with any Plano 3600-size box means you can interchange boxes in a snap. Model 1123-00 is designed for freshwater and comes with two 3650 StowAways. This model comes in a sandy-colored box with dark brown flexible straps to secure those boxes in place. The 1123-01 Hydro-Flo Flex’N Go Satchel was designed with saltwater anglers in mind but can be used in freshwater too. This model holds two 4-3620 HydroFlo StowAways, which have hundreds of small holes strategically positioned on the top and bottom of the boxes. The holes create a breathable environment for stored lures and allow anglers to rinse everything off in one quick and easy step and let everything inside dry naturally. The 1123-01 box is an attractive deep blue, complemented by yellow straps. Both models measure 15.375”L x 11.875”W x 4.875”H. For more information visit: jmgillies.com.au

OTI THUNNUS SINKING STICKBAIT

The Thunnus is OTI’s first sinking stick bait.  It creates a sub-surface walk-thedog action, with the ability to suspend horizontally to excite large predators and trigger strikes. Comes fully-rigged and ready-to-fish with RAPTOR XH Split Rings and RAPTOR 4X Treble Hooks. Available in 5 colors. For more information visit: canyonreels.com.au

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PLATYPUS PLATINUM BRAID The brief was simple; produce a locally made, smooth and strong braid at an affordable price. Platinum Braid uses silicon impregnated coating to enhance the smooth construction of the line. The smoother feel equates to quieter casting through the guides and longer more accurate casts. The coating reduces wind knots and increases abrasion resistance and knot strength. Our experience with braiding (which dated back to our beginnings in 1898) has allowed us to build a braid with a smooth feel without compromising tensile or knot strength. We only use 100% Ultra High Molecular Weight PE (Dyneema™/Spectra™) gelspun fibres in Platinum Braid. With everything you expect from a quality braid; high strength, small diameter and near zero elongation without the expensive price tag! Made right here in Australia by family owned and operated Platypus lines, we have made Platinum Braid for the fisho that needs an all round Braid at a price that won’t break the bank. Finally a braid is here that has combined affordability and reliability. Available in 10, 15, 20, 30 and 50 lb in 125 and 300 yd lengths in Gun Metal Grey or Natural White at all great tackle stores. RRP under $50 for 300yds. For more information visit: fishplatypus.com.au

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BOATING NEWS HAINES HUNTER APPOINTS NEW DEALERSHIP TO REGIONAL VICTORIA

THE NEW SAVAGE 385 JABIRU PRO IS READY FOR A CHALLENGE

The Murray Goulbourn Region in Victoria now has its very own Haines Hunter Dealer with Haines Hunter appointing Boats & More to their dealership network. Boats & More a family owned business operated by Simon & Kate Ryan and Robin Knaggs stems from a strong passion of boats, fishing & watersports. Simon and Robin have always dreamed of owning a boat business and are very pleased to see the huge growth the business has achieved in just 2 years.  Since opening their doors in October 2010 Boats & More has grown rapidly doubling the size of its Shepparton premises and recently acquiring Riverside Boats & Leisure on the Northern Highway in Echuca, soon to be renamed Boats & More.  Being on the water and attracting a large number of tourists, Echuca provides a huge opportunity for the team at Boats & More.  They’ve also recently added Suzuki motors to their outboard range, so their Haines Hunters can now be fitted with either Suzuki or Mercury engines.  Further information: Boats & More – (03) 5822 2108 or visit: www.boatsandmore.com.au Haines Hunter – (03) 9394 1540 or visit: www.haineshunter.com.au

Whether estuary fishing or trolling the dam, the new Savage Jabiru Pro range will be sure to impress even the most seasoned fisherman and is ready for any challenge the day might hold.  The first off the ranks in the new plate sided Jabiru Pro range is the 385 Jabiru Pro, which combines plenty of great fishing features with a unique design to produce a truly versatile boat. The 385 Jabiru Pro now features plate 2mm topsides giving this new model a more slimline and modern appearance. Typically a v-nosed punt, the 385 Jabiru Pro offers a great deal of stability at rest and while underway and can be operated at a smaller horsepower to save on money and petrol. Rated to a maximum 30HP and capable of seating four people, this new model has a host of options to suit individual requirements.  Featuring a stable front casting platform, full length rod storage pocket with carpeted lid and two rod holders, the 385 Jabiru is a top catch for the recreational or competition fisher. National Account Manager Ryan Dewson said the new Jabiru Pro range has been designed around fishing, for the eager fisherman in all of us. “The 385 Jabiru Pro and two other models in the range could easily be set up to be a competition fishing boat, whether bream or bass is the catch of choice,” Cameron said. “Being only 3.85 metres in length, this model is small enough to go places that other bigger boats have never explored before, leaving the fish for the taking.” The 385 Jabiru Pro can be optioned up to include a painted hull, bimini and envelope and side pocket and also features carpeted flooring and chequer plate deck as standard. For more info vist: www.savageboats.com.au

LOWRANCE AND SIMRAD CHOSEN BY HAINES HUNTER

YAMAHA POWERS EMIRATES TEAM NEW ZEALAND CHASE BOAT

Yamaha is proud to be the power behind a brand new chase boat supporting Emirates Team New Zealand’s bid to take home the Americas cup. The new chase boat, constructed by Salthouse Boat Builders, is powered by four Yamaha F300B V6 four stroke engines. These engines feature the very latest in outboard motor technology and were the obvious choice for Emirates Team New Zealand who compete in a race where taking advantage of the latest technology can mean the difference between success and failure. Emirates Team New Zealand approached the challenge head on by designing a totally new craft in house with input from Chris Salthouse, from Salthouse Boat Builders, who were responsible for the construction of this craft. The new 14m Cat that has resulted exceeds the required design speed of 50 Knots with an impressive top speed of 58 Knots (107km/h) – amazing performance for a boat of its size. Yamaha’s F300Bs deliver exceptional power through the use of plasma fused sleeveless cylinders. This innovation, more commonly found in high performance sports cars, allows Yamaha engineers to utilise bigger engine displacement without increasing external engine dimensions. Removal of steel cylinder sleeves also dramatically reduces the engine weight, in fact the F300B is the lightest offshore 300 horsepower engine available on the market today.

Marine electronics leaders, Lowrance and Simrad Yachting are pleased to announce that their award-winning product ranges have been selected to be installed on the high-class range of Haines Hunter fiberglass boats. Both brands, owned by Navico the world’s largest marine electronics company, have been chosen as a preferred electronics supplier enabling both new and existing Haines Hunter’s customers to choose from a wide range of Lowrance and Simrad configurations to suit their individual needs. The Lowrance suite of electronics will be offered as a standard installation option across the entire range of Haines Hunter boats, with the Simrad range proposed as an exclusive option for the prestigious R-Series Limited model range. “We are very pleased to work with Lowrance and Simrad and offer our customers an extensive and high quality choice of marine electronics” said John Haber, MD of Haines Hunter. “Haines Hunter boats are synonymous with quality and performance, therefore our alignment with these well-known brands demonstrates to our customers that we really are the best choice. Lowrance is an ideal fit for the Haines Hunter brand as there is something for everyone from the smaller entry level boat to the powerful, larger offshore vessel. Our R-Series Limited range offers genuinely exclusive fittings for the discerning boater and we agree that Simrad is the perfect partner for this luxury range”. John Scott, COO of Navico Asia Pacific, added that Haines Hunters’ customers will benefit from the superior after-care service for both brands. “We are delighted to partner with Haines Hunter and are confident that customers purchasing Haines Hunter boats will experience the latest technology and extensive warranty options that these brands are renowned for. Customers purchasing either a Lowrance or Simrad product can be assured that they can access up to 5 years of post-purchase support from the manufacturer. Customers purchasing new Haines Hunter boats are able to select their electronics to be installed at the time of manufacture. However, with the recent establishment of the Haines Hunter After Care Centre, based at Derrimut in Melbourne, existing owners of Haines Hunter boats are able to upgrade their electronics easily as well. Both factory fitted boats and boat upgraded at the After Care Centre will benefit from skilled technicians that have been fully trained in Lowrance and Simrad installations.

For more information visit yamaha-motor.com.au

For further info visit: haineshunter.com.au, lowrance.com.au & simrad-yachting.com.au

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BOATING NEWS HAINES HUNTER WINS

GME SLASHES EPIRB OWNERSHIP COSTS Whilst in the overall scheme of boating expenses EPIRBs are not considered a particularly high financial impost, with the only ongoing expense being the replacement of the battery at 5 or 6 year intervals. GME, one of the world’s largest and Australia’s leading emergency beacon manufacturer has now lowered the cost of EPIRB ownership even further. From August 1st 2012 all GME MT400 and GPS equipped MT406G beacons sold in Australia or New Zealand will be eligible for a free EPIRB service when the 6 year replacement is due. This service includes battery replacement and full performance check, essentially doubling the battery replacement period to a massive 12 years. For further information visit: gme.net.au.

SIMRAD NSS SPORT OWNERS GET STRUCTUREMAP VIEW AT NO EXTRA COST!

Congratulations to the team at Haines Hunter for their outstanding effort and achievement on winning the 2012 Victorian Marine Industry Awards for Marine Manufacturer of Vessels. Setting the benchmark in boat manufacturing Haines Hunter’s dedication and determination to produce quality boats that meet Australia Safety guidelines continues. Being the only existing fibreglass boat manufacture to be inducted into the “Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame” Haines Hunter’s reputation for excellence stems from its unwavering focus on research and development, cutting-edge design, advanced construction techniques and unparalleled on-water performance. So whether buying your first boat or your fifth, it is vitally important to choose the right boat for your family’s future safety and happiness, not to mention financial security. Also awarded on the day was, Haines Hunter’s, James Walsh for Metropolitan Apprentice of the Year 2012. Further information visit: haineshunter.com.au

YELLOWFIN 6900 TWIN POD CABIN

Leading marine electronics manufacturer Simrad Yachting, has today announced a significant update to its feature-packed, touchscreen chart plotter and multifunction display, the NSS Sport. Continuing Research and Development innovations mean that the Simrad NSS Sport now offers owners more features than ever before, thanks to a free software upgrade, which includes function additions, numerous feature enhancements and a whole host of performance improvements. One of the additional functions to result from this software upgrade is the inclusion of StructureMap view, a powerful, innovative tool that allows users to overlay images from their StructureScan sonar module onto a chart in real-time or to save images and review at leisure. This new feature allows users to view their surroundings like never before, putting what’s below the boat and what’s around the boat into context for the first time. StructureMap enables boaters to create custom charts of their favourite boating, fishing and diving areas and displays the last few minutes of SideScan imaging as a trail behind the vessel. StructureMap also allows users to scroll back and look at areas to identify key pieces of structure. Another benefit of the brand new Simrad NSS software update is the addition of a handy .pdf viewer, which allows users to store and view manuals, images, fishing and weather reports and other .pdf files from micro SD card or onboard memory for quick reference. Those taking advantage of the free software upgrade will also now be able to update their charts online and through installed Freshest Data software from Navionics. Navionics Freshest Data allows users to choose/select to overlay chart information submitted from end users in any part of the world onto their NSS Sport. Navionics Mobile App users can also upload chart issues to Navionics database in real-time.

The Yellowfin 6900 Twin Pod Cabin is able to take serious fishos out on the water faster and take them further while still being strong enough to withstand the harsh conditions of the ocean. This model offers maximum power with twin engine transom and a 230HP max rating. along with cabin bunks to protect from the elements on long fishing trips. With a sharp entry at the bow and a 20 degree deadrise at the transom, this model carves through the water for a smoother and softer ride and includes all the features that even the most serious fishermen need. The 6900 Twin Pod includes all the essential fishing features as standard that are optional on competitor brands like a rocket launcher with 6 rod holders, storage bunks, alloy transom, a cutting board with 5 more rod holders, 135lt plumbed kill tank and 65lt live bait tank. The no return scupper self-draining floor allows water to drain without the need for a pump or battery and the welded sub frame rib structure provides durability and strength. With tough 5.00mm bottom-sides and 4.00mm top-sides this boat is built to handle harsh offshore conditions. The 6900 is tough enough to handle anything Mother nature can dish out and is the practical and affordable option for the serious fisherman looking to land that perfect catch.

For further information visit: simrad-yachting.com

For more information visit: yellowfinboats.com.au

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the top ten...

THINGS YOU do wrong when fishing

As hard as it may be to hear, short of having a shark or seal take your catch, when you lose a fish, 99.9% of the time it’s your fault. If the fish spat the hooks, you gave it too much slack, if the line busts, you had too much drag, if the knot comes loose, your knots are probably shit. In all these scenarios, you did something wrong. Even when you go fishing and you don’t get a bite, there is a good chance you’re doing something wrong. Your ultimate goal is to be able to walk away knowing you did everything right, the best you could and you’ll know better for next time. So, this month, in no particular order, we have listed the top ten things you do wrong when fishing.

FISHING WHEN IT’S CONVENIENT

Unfortunately optimal fishing times rarely coincide with convenient times to go fishing. It’s imperative that you check the tides and the wind and not worry about if it is a nice day. Be ready and willing to fish ridiculously early hours of the morning, at night, in the rain, and when it’s cold. Waking up at 10am and then deciding to plan your day is not going to yield you great results. Get acquainted with a website that shows you all the various weather and tide information and bookmark it on your browser. Be sure to fish the tides and times that are applicable to your target species. If the conditions aren’t conducive to your target species you are better off not going and saving your time and money for another day. Waking up early so you’re fishing on sunrise will provide better results.

INFERIOR GEAR

There are thousands of tackle companies and thousands of products to choose from. Making a choice on gear can be difficult when working with a budget. Buying quality products will ensure your best chance of not losing that dream fish, although you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars and buy top of the range. Your best bet is to find a good tackle store (not a department store) and tell them how often you fish, what species you are targeting and what your budget is. Be realistic about what you will be using the gear for. If you fish on average once a month and your targeting whiting with bait, you don’t need anything too special in terms of rods and reels, however, don’t skimp on your terminal tackle, you want good sharp hooks and nice line and leader. If on the other hand you’re targeting GT’s, kingfish and marlin on a weekly basis, you want to be using gear that can withstand constant heavy drag pressures, salt exposure and long fights, this kind of gear is expensive. Everything from your crimps and hooks through to your rod should be of the best quality you can afford. You’re far better off having two great setups than having five average ones. If that lifetime fish hits the rod with that slightly inferior runner, split ring, hook or drag, you will lose that fish.

Using inferior gearwill lose you that fish of a lifetime.

LACK OF PREPARATION AND MAINTENANCE

There is no point trying to get things ready and organised in the heat of the moment when the fish are firing. There is also no point trying to fix your engine when it decides to die 20km offshore; by then, it’s too late. Spend your downtime and those rainy and windy days preparing everything down to the tiniest detail. Advanced preparation, organisation, and maintenance will not only ensure you hook and land more fish, but it will also provide a more enjoyable days fishing. Organise your tackle, change hooks, pre-tie leaders, throw out old stuff and replace it with new stuff. Triple check everything on your boat and if it’s slightly old, broken, rusty, “kind of not working”-get rid of it, fix it or replace it. Whether you’re fishing 50km’s offshore or off a pier, you should try and develop a system where everything has safe and easy access and is set up best as possible for presenting, striking, fighting and landing your fish. Always think logically about how you set things up, especially in a boat.

Put time into setting your drag pressure.

DRAG PRESSURE

Game fishermen are probably the most diligent of fishermen when it comes to setting drag pressure, however, it is one of the most overlooked aspects of an anglers preperation and is responsible for countless lost fish. Having the correct amount of drag pressure will ensure your best chance of success during the fight. But…what is correct drag pressure? The general rule of thumb is that one third of a lines stated breaking strain is the correct amount. So if you’re fishing 15kg, you want 5kg of drag, 24kg -8kg of drag etc.. This was a rule that was popular before the whole braided/gel spun/super line boom and when everyone used mono. As most braided lines break well above their stated breaking strain, fishermen are now fishing heavier drag pressures, however, this comes at the cost of straightened hooks and split rings, broken knots, pulled hooks and broken rods. It’s always best to stick with the “one third” rule and add more pressure when necessary. Always be sure that the other elements of your set up can handle those drag pressures, just because your line breaks at 24kg of pressure, doesn’t mean everything else can withstand that too! On the other end of the spectrum is too little drag pressure, if you don’t have enough pressure you won’t set the hooks properly and you’ll miss fish. If you want to know how to properly set drag pressure, Peter Pakula has some excellent videos on his website at pakula.com.au

PG. 16

HOOKED UP ISSUE 7

AUGUST 2012

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Always ensure you have good bait and lure presentation.


OLD BAIT

Fresh bait is always best.

The fresher your bait is, the more fish you will catch. Catching bait yourself and sending it down live or in fresh strips is obviously your best chance of success. If this isn’t possible you’re best off spending a little extra and getting some from the market or try and find a bait company that has good quality frozen bait. When you take into account all the other associated expenses a fishing trip entails, spending a little extra on fresh bait is worth it for the end result! If you’re not using fresh bait; stay home.

BAD KNOTS

Knots: you probably don’t know enough of them, don’t know when they can be better used and you may even tie them incorrectly. Knot knowledge is a huge factor in what separates a great fishermen from an average fishermen. Knowing more knots allows you to tie more rigs and certain rigs are required for ceratin situations. Do your self a huge favour, go buy a knot dvd or jump on Youtube and try and learn as many knots as you can. When you’re bored or have some spare time you will find that it is quite cathartic and enjoyable and will greatly improve your fishing.

NOT UNDERSTANDING YOUR SOUNDER AND GPS

Your sounder or fish finder is one of your greatest tools when it comes to finding fish. If you don’t know how to read it and use its functions properly, it is pretty much useless to you. It’s amazing how many fishermen don’t really know how to work their sounder and what a disadvantage this is. The best thing you can do is set a day aside and spend time on the water learning how to work your sounder. Grab the manual and get out there and familiarize yourself with it’s features and functions. Learn what colours represent, how to read different bottom structure, learn the difference between fish, weed, jelly fish and bait fish. Each sounder is different and they don’t all look the same. Having a good understanding of your sounder will help put you on to many, many more fish and give you a better understanding of fishing in general. While you’re at it make sure you know how to work your GPS as well, “straight out and a little bit left” are not proper coordinates!

Take the time to learn how to use your fish finder.

NOT FINDING YOUR OWN “SPOTS”

Catching a fish in a spot that you have found your self is one of the most rewarding captures you will ever have. This is why fishermen are so passionate about “their” spots; and rightly so. What you’ll find after a while, is those spots everyone is talking about, you found in a heavily published book or heard about from your mate, eventually stop firing as they get fished too hard or the fish have moved by the time you get out there. Start using your GPS, fish finder, google maps, knowledge you acquire from this mag, your tackle store, things you have heard about where they may have been caught lately and any other info you can source about your target species and find your own spots. Think like a fish and think for yourself and you will start to be able to find fish in places you never expected. You’ll be surprised how a little bit of logic, intuition and your god given instincts as a hunter will help you find fish. Not only will this bring you a strong sense of satisfaction but it will also get you more fish and it will start to improve your angling in general across all species and all locations. You may have to drive a little further or stay in a little closer but if you think about what structure fish like, what they feed on and what tides work best and put it all together, you’ll be surprised at all the new “spots” you just found.

LURE CHOICE

A common mistake fishermen make is to purchase multiples of the same lure because it has worked for them before and because “everyone is getting them on these”. Although there is some merit in proven performers and what the masses are having success with, a little bit of logical thinking will aid your luring success. Believe it or not, lure colour is the last thing you should think about when buying a lure or lures. The first things you should think about are where you’re going to be using it and what your target species is feeding on. If you’re targeting bream, fishing in two foot of water, casting into structure and trying to imitate a shrimp on the surface, there is no point having a tackle box full of deep-diving, light brown crank baits that “ everyone is getting them on”; it doesn’t work. Think about what kind of lures you need to “match the hatch” and effectively fish the structure, water depth and location you’re fishing; then have some fun picking out colours!

Make intelligent lure choices based on structure, conditions and target species, not popularity.

BAD PRESENTATION

Bad presentation is the most common reason why you’re not catching fishing and the bloke next to you is. Sure the wrong bait and wrong lure play a part, but generally, sloppy bait presentation and bad luring at fault. If you’re fishing with bait, take the time to cut your bait properly and present it on the hook appropriately. If you’re unsure how to present a bait to your target species effectively, google it, ask your tackle store or check the online digital Hooked Up back issues on our website, we generally explain how and have accompanying photos for the species and techniques covered. Use the right sized rod, line and leader and terminal tackle for optimal presentation. When luring, spend time learning how that lure swims and what you’re trying to imitate. Spend five minutes with the lure boat side or in the shallows and watch how it moves and responds to your actions. Remember, your lure is a puppet on a string, you are the puppet master, your goal is to imitate prey, so make it look believable.

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AUGUST 2012

ISSUE 7 HOOKED UP

PG. 17


SPECIES - bass, cod, perch TECHNIQUE - jungle fishing Agressive! 80mm surface lures and not always the first choice for a silver perch!

Jungle fishing...probably one of my all-time favourite options for light line sports fishing, often overlooked by many Australian anglers. I know many anglers who will drive for hours, burning fuel and time, for the privilege of launching their boats in sometimes crowded and overfished waterways, and while en route passing many stunning and varied fishing locations. PG. 18

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WORDS & PHOTOS BY ANGUS GORRIE


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AUGUST 2012

ISSUE 7 HOOKED UP

PG. 19


Packing light... The only way to do it.

Spinner baits... Excellent all rounders and tough enough for big cod.

This attitude of “we went a long way, it must be good” is quite counter intuitive in the fishing world. I am sure we can all relate to the hilarious irony of the bank side angler trying his hardest to cast as far as possible while the angler in a boat is trying to land a lure as close to the bank as he can! ‘Jungle Fishing’ is the affectionate term coined by many blokes I fish with and essentially constitutes any fishing where a solid foot slog through some serious vegetation and rough terrain is required to get to fishing destinations. This method of fishing does not just equate to some exceptional captures, but in many cases some truly exceptional terrain and scenery. Over the next couple of pages I will impart through my experiences why one would take PG. 20

HOOKED UP ISSUE 7

Catch and release... The way to ensure we can go and have another cracking session!

on this challenge and how to achieve the best results. First off I would like to revisit a concept I put forth in a previous edition of Hooked Up… To quote my explanation of what defines “sports fishing” from Issue 6 (July 2012), “I have always believed the answer is fairly simple, describing sport fishing as fishing in situations, and using equipment that gives the target fish a fighting, or even more accurately worded, “sporting” chance to avoid capture. Thus, like any reasonably matched sporting contest, the outcome is not guaranteed until the contest is over”. Fishing in the jungle is a perfect opportunity to exercise this belief in the nature of sports fishing. Due to a combination of rugged country and snag ridden water, both

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angler and gear must be ready to perform in order to do well. To reach truly exceptional fishing in jungle locations one must be ready to hike! This may not seem essential as some locations are situated on parks and other easily accessible scenarios. However it stands to reason that the locations less people are willing to trek into are also the locations that will produce larger numbers of fish who are far less lure shy! In this way, a fit and enthusiastic angler has a much greater chance of reaping the rewards. Gear and preparation as well must be tip top in order to maximise your success. Small jungle creeks have a tendency to be encumbered with numerous snags and surprisingly large fish! With this in mind leaders, knots, hooks and all other terminal

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gear need to be of the highest calibre. Drag settings need to be precise as often there are mere metres of water available to stop a large fish reaching an unassailable position. There are countless times I have witnessed, when under the strain of tight drags, knots pop or trebles bend. To be blunt, it’s just not worth the effort getting to these unique locations only to have terminal issues fail you. Finding A Location For good reason, many sensational locations for jungle fishing are kept well under wraps. Anglers who regularly engage in big treks can be reluctant to give away too much information and can be very protective of ‘their’ locations. Why? Most jungle fishing locations consist of


Big bass still live in skinny water.

all too common site in some easier to reach spots to come across the rubbish and debris left behind by less than considerate fishermen. On this note, if you are lucky enough to receive information on a location from a fellow angler, I would encourage to treat it with the upmost respect. Needless to say don’t leave rubbish (food wrappers and lure packets being prime culprits) behind. In addition, while many fish found in these venues are perfectly legal to take, the vast majority of truly enthusiastic jungle anglers practice catch and release. Being skinny water with a finite population of fish, this is a practice I both endorse and encourage. If you do not have the luxury of being handed a location to fish (the position most first time jungle fishermen will find themselves in) some serious fossicking may be in order. Where to start? I would encourage some serious trolling of old magazines and online forum articles. While many such articles and reports may not be specific on locations or even general areas, a lot can be deduced by reading further into images and information. Clues such as flora and species appearing in reports can help an angler whittle down the possible locations to a manageable few. Then get online. Google maps is your friend. Countless times I have taken a theory and turned it into a search for treasure following random water courses for many kilometres on Google maps. Like any treasure hunting, sometimes these hunts turn out to the utterly fruitless. However, the times when you strike gold make the effort well and truly worth it. Google maps can also assist in locating the best position to access the desired setting. These access points may not always be the ones marked on a guide or obviously marked like a park or recreation area, so take the time to look and you could save some serious hiking time. Hot tip: look for smaller tributaries entering rivers and creeks occurring upstream and downstream of dam walls. The presence of fish above and below stocked dam walls is a given (being that they are of course stocked there), and for the same reason they are often heavily targeted.

Knowing this, look for out of the way creeks and streams that eventually run into these more pressured systems as they can often contain copious numbers of fish who have migrated from their initial stocking point. Gearing Up Careful gear selection is essential to successful jungle fishing due simply to the limitations on what one can take. Unlike simple stationary bankside fishing or fishing in a boat, jungle bashing anglers do not have the luxury of numerous tackle boxes, rod and reel combos and so forth. In short, with considerations for food and drink, anglers need to be able to narrow down their no doubt considerable arsenal into a compact, efficient package. I prefer a backpack with one medium lure tray and an emphasis on variance. There is nothing worse than packing 20 spinner baits only to find a hot surface bite or take only poppers and find there are cod hitting spinner baits. Thus variance is the key. Depending on the target species I can usually fit into one tray a couple of bibbed hard bodies, spinner baits, poppers/walkers as well as a selection of jig heads with a packet of plastics or two. There are no prizes in these situations for having the most lures, instead a broad selection of lure styles (as opposed to the same model in varied colours) is ideal. The locations themselves often lend themselves well to this Spartan approach to packing as in many cases lures that become snagged can be retrieved with a short waist deep wade. Further research into the location you plan to fish can also help make this limited selection easier. For example, if its “cicada season” many freshwater species of fish take to actively hitting the surface. This would of course be a prime time to consider more surface options. Alternatively, you may have a hunch there are cod in the area leading you to lean towards some larger and tougher spinner bait options. There is not a ‘100% correct’ make up for the ideal tackle box and only your experiences and persistence will help perfect your selection.

Rods and Reels As tempting as multiple rods can be, a single choice is always best for this style of fishing. Juggling two combos is just not conducive when it comes to constant moving and bashing your way through vines, lantana and worse. However, this leaves you with a tough decision of what ‘one’ rod to take. I generally find a short rod, around the 6 foot mark and 1-3kg or 2-4kg the best option. Many anglers I know seem to take a negative view when it comes to 6 foot rods, believing they are too short. On the flats casting for bream, sure this may be true. However, in amongst dense jungle with numerous vines hanging overhead and a cast of only mere metres required, a 6 footer will be your best friend. 1-3 or 2-4… Seems a bit light right? Wrong. With the exception of getting bricked in the first few seconds (a scenario a heavier rod would not prevent anyway), larger skinny water jungle fish are more often than not able to be fought down. This can result in several tense minutes and skilful angling is required but this is after all the desired experience! A suggestion to improve landing rates would be using a heavier tippet, or even complete leader of at least 12lb. During a prolonged fight, leaders tend to cop the brunt of the fight as they rub against snags or the course mouth of some fish. Furthermore, the usual resistance and decreased casting distance a heavier leader can cause is rendered moot by the fact that often you are casting only a few metres up or down stream in these skinny jungle streams. Reel choice comes right down to the angler. I prefer a light finesse reel simply as it matches my preferred rod choice. Considerations should be given to the speed of the reel and quality of drag pressure as these will be the deciding factor with the hard hitting aggressive fish that tend to inhabit smaller water. Skinny water fish do tend to be very aggressive and hard hitting, possibly due to the Darwinist logic that they are in a habitat which dictates stiff competition and the only the tough survive. Spool capacity is not a big issue as fish in small bodies of water are

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not likely to take long blistering runs, but rather heavy thumping pulls. One suggestion however would be choosing a reel you don’t mind getting wet! Wading often becomes essential as the jungle becomes too dense to traverse or a fish pulls you downstream. This however should not be a major issue with the majority of environments I am referring to in this article being purely fresh water. Species There are multiple species regularly targeted by Australian anglers in the aforementioned way. South of Brisbane all the way through to southern New South Wales, the prime targets tend to be Australian Bass and Golden Perch. Further north, Sooty Grunter and Jungle Perch take precedent. South of New South Wales and around into Victoria and South Australia an avid love of Trout and Redfin Perch presides. The above mentioned advice applies to all these target species as does the suggestion to ‘be ready for anything’. Most waterways in Australia have at least one larger species that can put any angler and their gear to the test. These larger fish can come in the form of Cod (Eastern, Mary River or Murray River), Saratoga or Barramundi. The existence of these larger than usual species I have pointed out emphasises the requirement for quality reels, heavier leaders and a variety of lures. A combination of these three things will improve your chances of landing, or at the very least, competing against that once in a lifetime fish. In summary, I can honestly say there is nothing more satisfying than to think that I am fishing in a location rarely visited by anglers, or at least the punters. So get out there, do your research, refine your gear and technique and maybe you will find your own ‘Lost World’ where the scenery is stunning and the fish are abundant! Angus

AUGUST 2012

ISSUE 7 HOOKED UP

PG. 21


SPECIES - spangled emperor TECHNIQUE - poppers Damian Bowman with a spangled emperor caught in 1 metre of water.

WORDS & PHOTOS BY DAMIEN BOWMAN

Shallow water spangled emperor fishing is one of the ultimates for light tackle fun. This type of fishing is exciting due to the pristine surroundings of crystal clear waters and colourful coral. Sight fishing is common for these reef dwelling aggressive feeders making soft plastics and hard body lures perfect for working around coral bommies. PG. 22

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AUGUST 2012

ISSUE 7 HOOKED UP

PG. 23


Ben Tucker with a chunky shallow water spangled emperor.

The author is stoked with this spanglie caught from the shore.

Double hook up catch and release on a hot spangled popper session.

Waiting for a spangled emperor to come out of their hideouts and attack your lures with a great view seems to be the ultimate way to catch these hard fighting fish, but is it? Once discovering that spangled emperor take a liking to poppers it has added that extra excitement. Not only can you see them come out from the coral holes to give chase with poppers you get to see how aggressive they will smash a fish at the surface before they take their well renowned powerful first sprint. Not many anglers know about spangled emperor on poppers as they have long been regarded as bottom feeders. There are a few reasons why and when they attack poppers and at the right time they will prefer a popper over any lure or bait. To be honest once discovering how much they like them I have rarely used anything else. For myself personally I can cast small poppers from a small boat, shore or kayak all day long and never get sick of seeing these great fish attack. It also allows an opportunity for great bycatch such as trevally, coral trout and queen fish. Catching these brutes on poppers at first was a challenge and just something that PG. 24

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I wanted to accomplish. It now has flourished into a bit of an addiction. It didn`t take long to realise that if I found out when these fish feed on the surface that catching them on the surface could be a common occurrence. After quite a bit of experimentation I now know that targeting these fish from the surface at the right times will out-fish any other lure. This type of fishing was always the backbone of fishing trips up north with my brother Shane. In the early days we would fish out wide on the calm days and not have much success with the inshore fishing. Now we hope for the windy days to flick poppers with light gear and have mad sessions on the spanglies with the occasional by-catch of thumping golden and giant trevally. These days I love to fish alone or with my wife drifting through the coral paradises in our kayaks working the surface and waiting for the next spanglie to hammer a popper. It`s like fishing for bream on steroids! The gear required At first I used a 3000 size spinning reel with 20lb braid and a light 20lb spinning rod which works perfectly. A 20lb set up is handy to stop

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them going back into their coral holes but even with this size gear a good sized spangled emperor will be unstoppable on its first run. For an extra challenge I now use a rod and reel similar to a bream set up, which consists of a 2500 spin reel, 6lb spin rod with 6lb braid. You may prefer to stick with 20lb and this will see you landing more fish. A 7 to 7.5 foot rod is a good length. Longer rods are needed from the shore although when using a boat or kayak there is no need to cast as far so going a bit shorter won`t hurt. Leader is important to reduce abrasions from the coral and I recommend 50-80lb fluorocarbon of about one metre in length. As for the type of popper to use I have found all brands and colours to be successful, the only thing to remember is the smaller the popper the more strikes you will get. If you prefer to use single hooks rather than treble hooks they still work and it makes releasing the fish much easier, although the hook up rate is slightly reduced. My favourite colours are gold or pilchard patterns, but to be honest I have not noticed spanglies to favour a colour. I imagine the outline of the lure is all they would see from under the

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surface and are most likely attracted by the sound of the popper so your technique is important. I tend to use a similar technique as I would for giant trevally which is the “bloop then pause�. The pause is when the spangled emperor prefer to attack, unfortunately they will often miss but if you are lucky they will have 2 or 3 strikes and won`t give up until the popper is engulfed. Once they take off after a miss they rarely come back and casting in the same spot will be unfruitful to tempt the same fish again. You will know about it when they hook up as these fish in shallow water are pretty good at emptying your spool! Popping from the shore works well for these fish and if you put the time in by walking and casting you will soon find spots that they frequent. Using a boat or kayak is usually the best option and a fast drift works best as much more ground is covered. As with all types of fishing once you put the time in working on a technique and discovering your spots, expect to never be short of action.


The by-catches can be just as fun. Damian Bowman with a solid golden trevally.

It is hard to beat the rush you get from battling these powerful popper munchers.

Rachel Bowman hooked up to a nice emperor.

Shane Bowman is proud as punch with this specimen

Spangled emperor hang out in the most pristine places When to target them When it’s windy it is best, I am not too sure on why this is the case but it is the number one rule. My shallow water spots can be dead as a door nail when it is calm and as soon as the wind picks up the spangled emperor decide to hit everything on the surface. These days I won’t even bother till it hits 15-20 knots and the fishing fires up even more at 25-30 knots. In these conditions you obviously do not want to be too far from the shore but the good thing is you will drift fast and cover a large area. At first I thought it was covering

the area that increased the strikes but the same goes from the shore, if you are casting from the same place, the windier is always the better. Nothing beats a strong offshore breeze to cast poppers from the shore the wind will also be great to assist you in casting longer distances. One from the shore is as good as three from the boat! I had heard that they will attack poppers more readily in areas where small turtles are hatching, as this is one of their food sources and the turtles have a strong resemblance to a small popper. After discovering this I worked the right times of

year and day to where I fished to coincide with the turtle hatching to find the best time for spangled emperor popper action. Throw poppers on a windy day near where the turtles hatch in season and expect to get smashed! It was a great experience experimenting, researching and discovering new ways at targeting such a great species. The best thing about fishing is that the discoveries never end. You can say that some bloke knows everything there is to know about a certain sport say footy or cricket and it’s true they

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probably do. When it comes to fishing we are all amateurs because there is just too many species with too many different habits in too many habitats for anyone to know it all. Little is really known about whats in the ocean. Noone is even close to knowing everything there is to know about fishing. One thing is for sure though, your success comes from knowledge and experimentation which comes down to a bit of research and a lot of fishing. This seems like a good enough excuse for getting out and fishing more!

AUGUST 2012

ISSUE 7 HOOKED UP

PG. 25


SPECIES - various technique - fly fishing in the deep Bludger on deep fly.

WORDS AND PHOTOS BY GREG CARTER

Fly fishing was first documented in 200 AD when the Roman Claudius Aelianus wrote a book called “On the Nature of Animais” which described how people fished with a feather tied to a hook in the river Astracus in Macedonia. The prey was presumably Trout or Salmon as the fish had a “spotted exterior”. In recent years fly-fishing has evolved into an extremely versatile form of angling. Innovation, technology advancements and the invention of synthetic materials have enabled us to push fly angling to extreme limits and the realisation of species that will take a fly is ever growing. Dredging fast sinking fly lines or shooting heads into the deep blue depths has made many hard fighting species a lot more accessible on fly whilst also offering a different angling experience. It’s a relative new technique considering that fly fishing has been around for around 2000 years and is far from the traditional methods of intention. The principle is still the same and that is to match the hatch with “feather and fur” to capture prey. Whether it is mimicking insects floating down a river stream, imitating injured or fleeing bait fish schooled around a deep wreck, essentially that is what fly fishing is all about. Getting down deep I once read an article by fly fishing legend Peter Morse about fly fishing extreme depths of 60 meters for Amberjack on 16 weight rods but he also admitted that to fish these depths, official ANSA fly fishing rules had to be broken. It is proven that with the correct gear and knowledge depths of up to 30 PG. 26

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meters are a realistic expectation. To fly fish these depths perfect dredging conditions are needed and that would be a moderate run with the wind blowing mildly in the same direction or no wind at all. Generally the less run or tide against the current the easier it is to get a fly or any type of weighted lure down into the depths. When you have a severe wind against current scenario the thick fly line which has a lot of resistance in the water tends to drift away from the boat making it a tedious task to reach the proximity of the seabed. As the fly line is stripped by hand, using braid as a running line to assist in a quicker decent is not an option, this would cut you to pieces if a fish struck and ran whilst you were handling it. Dredging flies is similar to using plastics in deep water although a little more finesse and patience is required. My usual method of attack would be to drift with the current over a bait school or structure, casting in front of my drift path as far as possible. After the cast is made I feed extra running line out and slowly sink the fly line hoping to time the eventual decent of the fly into the target zone and then strip it back at a quick pace. Once I have drifted off the sweet spot it’s a matter of going back over and repeating the process. You won’t always land the fly right on target but it’s not always that crucial as pelagic species which are a popular

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and considerably easy target tend to roam in an area and move about constantly. Large reefs can be drifted over and once a school of fish is found can be marked on a GPS and concentrated on. An accurate descent is sometimes required to successfully fish a small target area when chasing species such as snapper, nannygai and fingermark. As with most forms of lure or fly fishing varying your technique of retrieval and speed is some times necessary to entice a fish to bite. A sea anchor can assist in slowing your drift thus decreasing current and resistance against your line making a quicker descent. Using an electric motor will also slow your drift and if it is equipped with GPS spot lock technology GPS it can keep you right on target for extended periods. Anchoring up current of a mark and sinking your line back onto it is a great option especially in extreme current against wind scenarios. The biggest advantage of working a permanent mark whilst stationary is that you can burley fish off the bottom and work your fly back through the trail. Reels Obviously to tackle decent fish on any tackle you need something that’s going to hold up to the job. For deep fly-fishing a strong reliable drag is probably the most important factor to consider because you will often have line peeling from your reel. From my experience cheap reels wear out when constantly put under pressure and usually fail at a crucial time. I recommend using a reel that can hold at least 150 yards of braid or dacron backing but 300 would be preferable just incase that fish of a life time comes along. It all comes

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down to available funds in the end but if you wish to get serious there should be no compromise. Rods If you intend to use any rod under a 9 weight when dredging the deep blue you will end up having lengthy battles which is not good if the intention is to release the fish. I prefer to use a 10-12 weight for most dredging scenarios which is ample to knock over most fish I am likely to encounter. The amount of weighted line that you need to sink your fly to the depths also governs the minimum rod weight you will be required to use. Most fly rods are 9 feet long but I have a custom 12 weight which is 8 feet and a lot easier to handle in confined spaces. It doesn’t cast as accurately or as far as a 9 foot rod however that is not so important for this style of fishing. Fly Lines There are many types of synthetic fly lines on the market these days which are basically split into 3 categories; floating, intermediate and fast sinking. For dredging you want a fast sinking line, the faster it sinks the better. A sink rate of 8 to 10 inches per second is about as fast as you will achieve without the use of overly weighted flies. Shooting heads are basically a length of heavier line forward of your running line. Some come pre-attached to a running line or in lengths that you cut to size and attach to your own running line. The running line is an extension of the shooting head which gives the fly line full length and enables easier handling when stripping. They can be anything from an old fly line to specialist products. The


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40 plus pound GT taken on 10 wt fly gear.

Even the grinners will take a fly.

best combination that I have come up with so far over a 12 weight rod is an old 6 weight fast sinking fly line reversed and connected to 300 grains of lead core shooting head. Most fly lines of this class have a breaking strain of around 35-50 lbs. Fly lines and shooting heads are measured in grains. The higher the rod weight the more grains you can load up on it. For example, a 6 wt rod will fully load up with about 200 grains of line and a 10 wt requires approximately 390 grains, however, this varies with brands. Generally the deeper you want to fish the more grains you will need, hence the heavier rod requirement. Braided mono loops are often attached to a fly line for easy leader and line replacement. Pelagic species such as Mackerel sometimes hit these and snip them off however colouring them the same as the fly line can help eradicate this problem. Leaders In most fly fishing scenarios tapered leaders are used which is to assist in rolling a cast out neatly for presentation to the prey. For dredging they are not a necessity, the fly doesn’t have to be presented on the surface with finesse, casting is only to throw your initial line length out, the rest of the line is let out after the cast is made. Connection points and knots in self made tapered leaders can be targets for toothy critters so eliminating these where possible decreases the risk of snip off. Using a light fluorocarbon leader all the way from fly line to bite tippet will assist in achieving the quickest possible sink rate. I prefer a good quality fluorocarbon from 6 – 10 kg as my main leader line rather than a

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mono leader. Fluorocarbon sinks quicker and it’s less visible to the fish. 10kg may sound light to some people when tackling large fish like 20 kilo GT’s however it is very hard to snap 10kg over a 10-12 weight rod. Knot strength is sometimes compromised when using fluorocarbon but this is usually when using incorrect knots or inferior brands. I use a leader length of around 3 meters because the way I see it the longer the leader the less fly line you need to sink. Bite Tippets All over Australia there are many toothy critters that will slice your line in a second if given the chance, so you will sometimes require a bite tippet to attach to the line class you’re using whether it’s heavier mono, flurocarbon or wire. When I first started fly fishing I used heavy leaders all the way through from fly line to fly due to laziness, but have since learnt the hard way that you often end up snapping fly lines instead of leaders when snagging occurs. For most situations I start off using a 20-40lb mono tippet and if a snip off occurs, I swap straight over to a tie able multi-strand wire which can be expensive but a wise investment. Flies Fly tying has strayed far from its traditional form and has become an art in itself with masters of the vice replicating anything from small mammals or large bait fish to half a pilchard. In some fly fishing situations the line is used to get the fly down to a depth but for dredging a fly that sinks faster than your line it’s recommended to avoid bellied lines and also to assist in an overall quicker line


Large Mouth Nannygai.

Spanish taken from the double island wrecks.

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Double hook up.

Bludger fun.

Queenfish from an inshore wreck.

Deep fly necessities.

School Mackerel from a wreck.

A mack tuna dredged from a wreck.

decent. Large weighted eyes to 1/10th of an ounce, solder and tungsten putty can be used to give a fly extra weight but be careful you don’t go overboard because I have personally witnessed rods breaking whilst trying to cast a buffed up or over weighted fly. From my experience which is mostly Queensland based the most reliable and effective fly to use on a broad variety of PG. 30

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species whilst dredging has been the simple clouser on steroids. I prefer to tie these with DNA or Slinky fiber rather than fur and often add rattles which may improve the strike rate. A consideration to take note of is that a sparsely tied fly with a thin profile will have less water resistance and will sink faster than a chunked up fly. Other patterns that have worked well are keel flies, Anchovy Bombs

AUGUST 2012

and weighted high profile pelagic patterns. I usually start with a green or chartreuse based pattern and start swapping around from there if I am not getting any attention. Depending on the size fish you are targeting patterns tied onto a sharp and strong size 3o to 8o hooks will suit most of your dredging needs. It may sound quite complicated but for any body serious in having a go I seriously

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recommend joining a fly fishing forum, a fly club or becoming friendly with the local tackle store fly guru and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Good luck, persist and improve,


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the hooked up review SCENTBLAZER Various head shapes, skirts and sizes are available in the range.

For a lot of game fishing enthusiasts in Australia it’s all about trolling skirted lures. You watch the lures with an intense mesmerising stare, as they smoke and bubble through the swell, as you eagerly anticipate the big one. Then out of nowhere, a fish materialises on your long rigger with an explosive bite and the sing of a squeeling reel as line melts off into the abyss. You couldn’t think of a better way to go fishing. However, whilst technology has modernised our boats, electronics and fighting equipment(to help catch those fish) - we seem to have been at a loss to improve the last element in our quest for big fish, and that’s the lure’s themselves. Over the last 10 years we have had significant changes in head shapes and skirt colours, but at the end of the day, many of the better known ‘fish raisers’ from long ago still remain the best lures in today’s market. Thankfully, the team at Scent Blazer have been thinking outside the box and have entered the market with some exceptionally smart and versatile products that are going to give those old resin heads a run for their money! So what makes Scent Blazer’s lures stand out from the rest? Each lure has been designed with a detachable chamber built into the lure head that allows you to add scent, weight, light or even a rattle into the chamber. These bait chambers also feature rear holes to house glow sticks and a special hook lock for those of you that like to stiff rig your hooks on your lures. The ability to “pimp your bait” has never been an option in Game Fishing until now, and I for one am very excited about the many options us fishos get to experiment with. The Range: The Scent Blazer lure range currently features six different sized lures; with the smaller sizes available in four different head shapes and 16 different colours. So, whether you are chasing Tuna, Wahoo,Sailfish with the smaller lures or trolling for a big blue out wide on the large – the extensive Scent Blazer range has got you covered. To start you off with using the bait chamber, each lure comes complete with glow sticks and a bait stick thrown in, but read on as we will give you some tips on the best ways to utilise it. The Scent Blazer bowling pin teasers come in two sizes(20 and 30cm) that feature great reflective finishes, glow in the dark eyes and can also be chocked full of fresh fish scent, rattling floats or anything else you can think up. Running a couple of these teasers in the water will produce a constant scent trail in the water when trolling, which can prove highly useful when chasing any pelagic fish... so don’t be afraid to run a couple of these when fishing for inshore species such as Kingfish or Mackeral. Despite their glossy finish, these teasers are built solid with a heavy screw lid and will stand up to plenty of fishy punishment. Between the lure and teaser range, Scent Blazer also sell a great assortment of gamefishing accessories including replacement lure skirts, rigging sleeves , hook locks and bait chambers. These bait chambers used by themselves, make great burley cages to attach to your main line when bottom fishing.

Scent Adding scent to your lure can be as simple as stuffing cut baits (eg. Pilchards or Squid), cotton balls soaked in tuna oil, or Billfish Juice tablets to the chamber. If using cut baits, ensure you regularly change your baits to keep a fresh scent in your spread. Not only will the addition of scent to your lure help convert a few window shoppers to a hookup, the well thought out ‘Scent Blazer’ design is set to revolutionise switch baiting. When you are using baits, make sure you use the bait stick supplied by Scent Blazer as it really does makes adding and removing baits from the chamber a quick no fuss experience. Weight Unfortunately, fishing off the Australian coast line is often complicated by varying wind conditions and swell that can cause lures to blow around and generally not run well. If this sounds like a familiar scenario to you, all you need to do is switch to a Scent Blazer and you will find this frustrating issue very easily fixed. Wind the lure in, add some weight into the scent chamber and run the lure back out. Having the option to add weight to your spread means you can get your lure to smoke and track the way YOU want in any kind of sea. Lights Another great feature of the Integrated bait chamber is the ability to add light. The chamber itself has holes in the back to insert glow sticks, but for a serious glow you can add a waterproof LED light into the chamber itself. As an alternative, inserting a flashing strobe light into the lure head will not only act’s as a great fish attractant, it makes your lures a whole lot easier to spot and monitor in heavy seas. Whist not a big fishery in Australia yet, the ability to add these lights and scent would make these lures a perfect late night swordfish snack run deep on a downrigger over one of our underwater canyons. Rattle Adding a rattle to your lure can be as easy as threading a couple of beads and weights onto your main line within the chamber. Personally, I have found that loose splitshots (or other small sinkers) contained within the chamber itself create great sound and add a bit of weight to help the lure track better. The rattling sound is created by water pushing through the front of the head and moving those sinkers around the chamber under pressure. Adding a rattle would be the perfect addition to a Scent Blazer when fishing for Wahoo and big Spanish Mackeral. With Scent Blazer you can now have the lure looking how you want, swimming how you want and smelling how you want. I’d hate to be a fish this season! By Colin Macdonald To check out the range of Scent Blazer lures and teasers, visit scentblazer.com or contact (02) 9299 2088.

A bait chamber filled with bait.

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the hooked up review TACKLE HOUSE FEED POPPER

RRP: $34.95 The holographic finish, solideyes and detailed mould engravings make for a very presentable lure.

The deep cup allows for easy use and an excellent splash/bloop.

Note the rear weighted keel which allows excellent casting distance, straight tracking and causes the lure to sit vertically at rest.

Tacklehouse is a company out of Tokyo that is currently quite unknown here in Australia. If the Feed Popper we have for review is anything to go by I think that will change quite quickly. Tackle House produce a range of gorgeous lures that are perfectly suited to inshore and offshore Australian species. First impressions showed this little to popper to have a bit of difference and it certainly showed out in the field. Casting At 22gm and 100mm in length this popper falls in the small-mid range category. A low profile design and being fairly light weight you can’t cast this lure great distances when using lines in excess of 10kg and spool sizes in excessive of 300. Taking this into account we thought this lure was best used to target queenfish, Australian salmon, long tail tuna, trevally, emperor and any fish in that 3-6kg category that inhabits inshore reefs and bays. This makes it a versatile lure that is suited to species nation wide. I was given the job of reviewing this little popper on my recent trip to Darwin where the plan was to cast it around Darwin harbor for longtail tuna, queenfish and golden trevally. My chosen outfit was 7’ rod with a 3000 size reel spooled with 7kg braid. I was surprised at how far I could cast this little guy out! This can be attested to all the weight sitting in the rear of this lure greatly aiding in casting distance and also providing great benefits on the retrieve. Retrieving The first thing I noticed as soon as the Feed Popper hit the water was that I couldn’t see it anymore. Bringing the popper back to the boat I was surprised to see that the rear weighted keel that sits under the lure causes the Feed Popper to sit almost vertically in the water when at rest, with only the top of it’s clear cupped face protruding from the surface. You only have to give the rod a slight jerk and the deep cupped face instantly grabs water and bloops and splashes with ease. It tracks straight and responds well to angler movement. You can also give it a bit of flare by using a slight walk-the-dog technique to get it zig-zagging along the surface. At first I was probably jerking too hard and it was skipping and losing rhythm, by giving it very slight jerks and twitches I soon found that bloop-rest rhythm that fish love and realised that PG. 34

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Type:

Popper

Buoyancy:

Floating

Depth:

Surface

Length:

100mm

Weight:

22 gm

Colors:

14

Hooks:

Owner Cultiva Stinger

this is a popper that requires minimal physical effort from the angler. On my fourth cast I was forgetting all about trying to catch a fish and was just playing with the lure when a golden trevally of about 70cm came up behind the lure half way back to the boat, I was running out of line so I paused and that’s when the trevally inhaled the lure. The extreme vertical rest position provided a very solid hook up deep in the fish’s throat and if all your hook up’s were to be like this barbless hooks would be the way to go. I kept fishing and was starting to draw a lot of attention from small queenfish and more trevally when I got a very solid hook up that took a screaming run and cut me off almost instantly, I was very sad to see the Feed Popper go. Finish and Hardware The shape of the lure looks great and performs exceptionally well. The engravings are classy and detailed and the holographic paint work is beautiful and durable. It encompasses throughwire construction, secure joins, Owner trebles, solid split rings and a secure tow point. This is a high-quality lure where thought and care have been put into its design and construction. It also encompasses a punchy sonic rattle that works in conjunction with its natural bloop sound and spray. Conclusion I’m loving this company and I can’t wait to try out more of their gear. This is high-end Japanese tackle where you get what you pay for! It’s fun and easy to use and has a point of difference to the plethora of poppers on the market. It’s versatile and can be used on a multitude of species and locations. By: Justin Gray

DISTRIBUTED BY: GLADIATOR TACKLE WEB: GLADIATORTACKLE.COM.AU

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the hooked up review NORDIC STAGE SHARPSHOOTER Length:

7’0”

Spin:

Two Piece

Cast Weight:

3.5-12gm

Line Rating:

2-4 kg

RRP $290.00

The Fuji Sic single bracket titanium guides look and perform beautifully, however, rods equipped with these guides really need a hook hanger.

The Sharpshooter is finished nicely with great attention to detail all over.

Nordic Stage is a company out of Russia that has really started to make a name for itself among the Southern Queensland estuary and canal fishermen. It’s no surprise that this still relatively unknown brand is rapidly building a following here in Australia; field tests showed that these are excellent rods and Nordic Stage has a range of models to suit most Australian conditions. The Areal range from Nordic Stage is built for light tackle fishing and the Sharpshooter is the first of three models that we will be reviewing over the coming months in Hooked Up. Upon first view the Sharshooter has all the right specs to be an all round estuary rod for targeting bream, flathead, tarpon and other species found in canals and estuaries around the country. Casting With a name like Sharpshooter, Nordic Stage must have been pretty confident that this rod can cast well; and it certainly can. This is a gorgeous rod to cast with. The blank has a very slim and elegant profile with enough whip in the tip and mid section to sling out light lures with accuracy and distance. It can cast any lure within its stated cast weight capabilities and is such a well balanced blank and taper that it could easily cast lighter weights. I spent the majority of the day casting hardbodies and blades in the 3-8 gm range and the Sharpshooter offered gorgeous control in a one handed casting set up. Retrieving I loved retrieving lures with this rod as much as I loved casting with it. It has a very thin blank and is very light in weight making it extremely comfortable to fish with. No matter what kind of lure I was working I had excellent one-handed control and enough sensitivity to really feel connected with my lure. Whether I was swimming a soft plastic or a blade I could feel every little bump of the bottom or bite from a fish from the tip of my rod right up my forearm.

about 2.5kg that took a jerk shad near the surface. The Sharpshooter loaded beautifully with about 2kg of drag pressure, held steady, offered excellent control over the fish and the med/ fast taper provided a nice and secure hook set. I have never found one-handed rod butts all that comfortable to fight fish with but this is a small compromise for a more comfortable and efficient cast and retrieve. Hardware and Finish Nordic Stage has spared no expense when it comes to its chosen hardware. Single bracket Fuji Sic titanium guides add to the all round great feel and performance of the rod. A hooded Fuji VSS reel seat that screws up from the bottom looks the part and is light, comfortable and secures the reel nicely. The burnt orange paint job and brass finishes give the Sharpshooter a classy and modern look without it looking like some kind of light saber. Conclusion At $290 you’re getting a lot of bang for your buck. The Sharshooter looks great, is light in weight, strong, all aspects of the rod perform beautifully and it has top quality hardware. You even get a quality rod bag with it that has Velcro tabs that closes it all up and awesome Sharpshooter illustrations. I would recommend these rods to anyone and I feel we will be aring big things from Nordic Stage in the future. By Adrian Von Nordica DISTRIBUTION BY: OBSESSION FISHING WEB: WWW.OBSESSIONFISHING.COM.AU

Fighting I was concerned that the very thin and light blank would struggle when loaded up with about 2kg of pressure. My concerns were put to rest when I hooked up to an Australian salmon of

The Fuji Vss reel seat looks the part, feels great in the hand and secures the reel firmly.

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the hooked up review KILLALURE 2 DEEP

RRP: $19.95

A classic finish and shape meets the new and innovative Dynamic Interchange System.

Killalure’s have a proven history of slaying fish in Australia’s northern hemisphere. Intelligent, original and Australian designs for Australian species have set these lures apart from the masses. Many lures have headed the call when it comes to action, size, dive depth and colour but few have offered versatility when taking sonic attributes of a lure into account. Lance Butler and Killalure have now designed a lure that offers something very innovative within their new range; interchangeable sonic chambers, a low profile design and a bib with a bit of a difference. I had the pleasure of testing the 2Deep lures in the ultimate location of the Northern Territories Daly River.

The three chamberssilent, loud/low pitch, quiet/high pitch.

Casting At 24gm, casting this lure distance is not an issue when fishing from a bank or making short casts from the boat into tight structure. Even though the 2Deep has quite a large bib, the slim profile allows good accuracy and doesn’t cause too much of a splash when landing. Retrieving The 2Deep is really at home whether retrieved by the angler or trolled behind the boat. With a slow and steady retrieve its natural action is a loose head down roll that will move into a really tight and aggressive wobble as you apply more speed. The bib has a small hole in it which Killalure refer to as the H20 Hydrokeel. This small hole lets water flow through which stabilizes the action of the lure so it will run true when trolled at different speeds, various distances behind the boat and with different line diameters and leader sizes. It was hard for us to attest whether or not the HydroKeel makes a difference, however, the 2Deep certainly ran true without blow outs, or excessive resistance when trolled at 7 knots. It required no tuning what so ever and swam beautifully straight out of the box, so we are figuring that the Hydrokeel was conducive to its great performance. The major feature and most innovative aspect of the 2Deep is DIS (Dynamic Interchange System). DIS is basically little chambers that sit behind the head of the lure that can be changed to give the lure different rattles or no rattle at all. Each 2Deep comes with three chambers: a loud/low pitch rattle, a soft/high pitch rattle or an empty chamber that has no rattle at all. This is an excellent feature as you can customize the sonic attributes of your lure to suit various fishing situations. The loud rattle is great when water clarity is poor or you are trying for reaction strikes when targeting territorial fish or when fish are in “shut down” mode. The softer rattle is great when you don’t want to spook fish but still want a sonic attractant and the empty chamber is excellent for when you’re trying to be stealthy and you don’t want to scare fish off. The buoyancy of the lure slightly changes with the different weights of the chambers but this is only marginal. Changing the chambers is fairly easy but you have to be weary of pricking yourself on that front treble in the process.

The large bib sends this 2Easy to depths in excess of twenty feet. Note the Hydrokeel hole in the bib.

Finish and Hardware The finish and paintwork of the 2Deep series is great. The 10 colours offered in the range suit both blue water and river applications and are detailed nicely. They are a good looking lure that make you want to give them a go and persevere if you don’t get immediate strikes. The paint job isn’t the kind that will just flake off in chunks and it seems quite impervious to the toothy and raspy mouthed species the lure is intended to target. I caught three barra and two threadfin salmon on the gold colour and the lure still looks a treat. The VMC trebles held up fine with about 3-5kg of drag pressure and unless you wanted to add heavier hooks for greater suspension or you were wanting to fish extreme drag pressures, upgrades are not necessary. The DIS chambers are strong and water tight and don’t pose any negative threat to the lures action or longevity. Conclusion While I only managed to spend two days on the water and had a lot of gear to test, I managed to land quite a few barra and threadfin on the 2Deeps and was impressed with these lures. I kept the loud/deep chamber in the whole time as it suited my fishing application but I believe that the DIS interchangeable chambers are an innovative feature and not a gimmick. These lures are suitable for blue water applications and are pretty snag resistant. They are well priced, fun to use and versatile.

Type: Deep

Diving minnow

Buoyancy:

Floating

Depth:

20ft

Length:

120mm

Weight:

24 gm

By Justin Gray

Colors:

10

DISTRIBUTED BY: JM GILLIES WEB: JMGILLIES.COM.AU

Hooks:

VMC

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the hooked up review RRP: $329.95

NITRO BABY VIPER Length:

7’

Style:

Spin

Sections:

2

Cast Weight:

9-40gm

Line Rating:

3-6 kg

The black finish and Nitro logo looks sleek and the blank is of the highest quality.

After owning three Nitro rods, using various models that friends have owned, and having tested out a few that have come through the Hooked Up office; I can confidently say that Nitro are one of the best rod companies in the world. Every rod they make is designed intelligently and with a purpose. I believe that their excellent designs are a testament to customer feedback and a good understanding of what the modern fishermen wants. Nitro don’t make cheap rods for the weekend angler, they produce high quality pieces of fishing equipment. The Baby Viper I have for review is no exception, originally a 6-8kg model that has had some of the grunt taken out of it for lighter angling while still being able to handle some very big fish. Casting The Baby Viper was designed for working soft plastics over deep reefs for species like snapper. While this kind of fishing does not require accurate or distance casting, the Baby Viper does offer excellent casting accuracy making it a great rod for targeting large flathead, cod and mangrove jack. At 7’ with the ability to cast lures up to 40gm you can still get some great distance out of it also. The baby Viper had no issues casting 1/4 oz and 1oz jig heads and 40 gm slugs. Retrieving The retrieve is where the Baby Viper really stands out. Being able to effectively work a soft plastic with a 1oz jig head 20 or 30 feet below the surface requires a rod with excellent sensitivity where the rod does not absorb all your imparted action. The Baby Viper has a fast taper and a stiff action that allows you to still feel what your lure is doing when working it in the depths. It’s sensitive, responsive and this is a necessary requirement when working soft plastics like flick baits that have little natural action. It’s equally at home when working vibes, large crank baits and surface lures. Fighting We had the ability to test the viper out on various species which really showed the blanks versatility. On its first field test the target was large estuary flathead. While the largest fish caught was only about 60cm in length, it showed that with a 2500 size reel and 4kg braid the

rod loaded up nicely and didn’t feel over the top. Even with smaller fish the sensitive blank offered an enjoyable fight. Silver trevally and small bream were also an enjoyable capture. Landing snapper in the 2-3kg size range was where the Baby Viper was an absolute joy. The fast taper allowed solid hook ups with finicky bites when working soft plastics over deep reefs. The blank loads up beautifully with the slightly heavier drag pressure when using 6kg braid and I personally love a fast tapered rod that maximizes the majority of the blank when fighting a fish. The rod was perfectly suited to this style of fishing and every element of it was pleasurable to use. The butt and reel seat are all configured nicely to make fighting large or small fish comfortable in the anglers hands. Hardware and Finish Nitro have a uniform black finish that looks great, is classy and endures time and rough handling well. The cork grips are comfortable in the hand. The Fuji Alconite guides are of excellent quality and match up with the blank perfectly. Conclusion: This is another great model that Nitro can proudly add to their already excellent range of rods. It’s versatile, ergonomically designed and can be used in a huge variety of fishing applications. It’s length offers casting distance and its ability to cast heavy weights for its rating is an excellent feature. Every aspect of this rod is an absolute pleasure to use and if you break any part of it Nitro will replace that part no questions asked for $60. By Adrian Von Nordica

DISTRIBUTED BY: MAYFLY TACKLE WEB: WWW.INNOVATORRODS.COM

The long cork butt is comfortable in the hand, looks great and sits well in rod holders.

All the bindings and resin work are finished simply and beautifully.

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the hooked up review RRP: FROM $90 .00

D.A.M QUICK 330S Line Capacity: 30lb/300yds Gear Ratio:

4.0:1

Weight:

633gm

Bearings:

3

Max Drag:

7kg

The Quickpower has classic looks and a solid build.

D.A.M are a German company that have been producing fishing gear since 1875. They were once one of the most prominent fishing tackle companies in the world but lost a bit of ground around the second world war. After the war, the company became one of the biggest fishing tackle companies in the world and was most famous for its D.A.M Quick spin reel and its Damyl line. D.A.M has a reputation for outstanding products and German engineering amongst those in the know, but has never had too much impact here in Australia. Recently Wilson Fishing has taken on the D.A.M line and is bringing in a selct range of products that are suited to the Australian market. We had the pleasure of reviewing the D.A.M Calybre earlier in the year which was a great reel so we were keen to see how one of the overheads went upon testing. The D.A.M Quick 330S that we have for review is a no fuss overhead that has a good balance of old school design with some modern touches. German design and engineering and a Chinese build provide a reel for the budget conscious angler, but its great price is not at the expense of quality. It’s in no way a high-end reel that we recommend you go and jig for XOS kingfish with, however, it has a place for many Australian fishermen and comes at a great price. Construction and features: A mix of carbon with metal reinforcement construction in the body gives the 330 a nice light weight feel that balances well with rods rated around 10-20kg. I paired it with a 15kg rod and this was a great pairing. The metal spool is a nice touch and the reel in no way feels rickety or cheaply made. In fact, it feels very solid and smooth upon initial winding. The heat resistant star drag is smooth and not too sensitive and is positioned well. The instant anti-reverse is solid and the ability to adjust the arm length is a great touch. A stainless steel main shaft, three double sealed bearings and water resistant brass gearing should provide years of smooth operation.

The 330S has excellent wire capacity.

In use: A reel like this is best suited to trolling and bottom bouncing so I wanted to give it a go trolling for Spanish mackerel and bottom bouncing for red emperor. Letting out line with a deep diving minnow showed the free spool function to perform faultlessly with no skips or jumps. I set the drag by hand/feel and set the ratchet on. After a few circles over my favourite sand bar the ratchet screamed and I left the boat in gear hoping for another hook up while giving me the chance to see how the drag performed. With about three to four kilo of drag pressure and the boat still running at about 6 knots the drag was allowing line to peel off very smoothly and I noticed no fault, in fact it was a very smooth drag indeed. The power handle was very comfortable to wind with under load and made bringing the mackerel to the boat a breeze. With a 4.0:1 gear ratio this reel is not designed for highspeed spinning but is designed for power. While under load the reel remained smooth and had great crank power. After having no luck on the troll for Spaniards I headed out to bottom bounce a reef of about 30 feet in depth. I manged to get on to a few large emperor that were around the 4kg mark and again the 330S showed to have a smooth drag and great crank power. It in no way struggled bringing these fish up from the depths with an 8oz sinker attached. Conclusion: D.A.M have done an excellent job in producing a quality reel that will handle basic fishing duties such as trolling for mackerel, small tuna and trevally. It can handle bottom bouncing in the depths and can comfortably dish out 5kg of drag pressure while remaining smooth. I wouldn’t recommend it be used to target large kingfish, samson fish and amberjack when vertical jigging and it’s not the kind of reel you would use to target big game species either. It is an excellent reel for general purpose bait fishing and trolling. As far as we can tell it has all the right specs and parts to have great durability and longevity if cared for properly. The power handle and adjustable arm are great features that make it a comfortable reel to use and it’s an excellent choice for anyone looking to purchase multiple reels as it’s a very cheap price for the reel you get. There are many similar reels on the market that have double this price tag that do not perform any better and probably lack some of the ergonomical features.

A large power handle, large star drag and adjustable arm make for a very ergonomical reel.

By Justin Gray DISTRIBUTED BY: WILSON FISHING WEB: WILSONFISHING.COM.AU

PG. 42

HOOKED UP ISSUE 7

AUGUST 2012

WWW.HOOKEDUPMAGAZINE.COM.AU


the hooked up review RRP: $129.00

FEREI HL20 HEADLAMP For any land based fishermen that wants to target his chosen species at night, a head lamp is imperative to your angling success. There is nothing worse than trying to tie rigs, bait a hook or look for something in your pack with a standard torch hanging out of your mouth. Headlamps are a great source of hands free light and enable you to do everything you could usually do during the day. Unfortunately many of the headlamps found in fishing and camping stores are very average. The light is not bright enough, the head straps are uncomfortable, the battery pack is too heavy and the batteries run out too quickly and always at the most inconvenient of times. Whether you’re fishing off a beach, the rocks, a jetty, break wall or bank, a headlamp is necessary to your angling success and is a crucial form of safety. They can also be of use for those of you with small boats that have inadequate lighting for night fishing. The Ferei HL20 headlamp I have been given to review is easily the best headlamp I have ever had the pleasure of using and there are quite a few reasons why. Ergonomics and comfort It doesn’t matter how bright and powerful a headlamp is, if it isn’t comfortable to wear for extended periods of time then it is pretty much useless. I have had many headlamps and they were all either too heavy, itchy or never sat quite properly on my head. The Ferei has been very well designed and is extremely comfortable to wear. It’s light in weight at only 200gm and this is what a great deal of its comfort can be attested to. Usually with my headlamp I would take it off and put it in my pocket until I needed light again as it was quite annoying, I fished for about four hours with the Ferei and never took it off once. The elastic fabric straps have an adjustable buckle to cater for different head sizes and it’s easy to adjust. Positioning of the on/ off button on a headlamp is also something that many have gotten wrong and the HL20 has excellent button placement. A large soft push button that sits away from the head of the lamp where your right temple region is makes for easy operation. The chord that runs from the head of the lamp to the battery pack securely runs around the side of the strap and doesn’t pull, get caught or in any way become a nuisance. Also of importance is the build quality. The HL20 is made from aircraft grade aluminium and is anodized with a military grade finish that prevents scratching and corrosion. Power and functions At 600 lumens this is a very, very bright LED torch. It has a range of 300 metres and penetrated with ease through fog and salt spray in the darkness of a new moon. It’s bright white light and extreme penetration is attributed to its glass lens and a computer designed alloy reflector which all aid in a seamless bright beam. One of the best features of the HL20 is the fact that your lighting options are customisable, this allows you to use the light for viewing things in the distance or for when you need to do things up close. It has three modes; High (which is full power) Med/User and Strobe.

The HL20 is light in weight, comfortable to wear for long periods of time and is very, very bright.

mode is fully adjustable and offers four different flash patterns; slow strobe, quick strobe, police strobe and SOS. Switching between modes and adjusting brightness levels is very easy and is all done with the one button, a quick read of the instructions will have you operating all functions with ease. Rechargeable The HL20 is fully rechargeable and the recharging process is a simple case of plugging the unit into a power point with the included charger. There is no need to remove the battery. The HL20 is equipped with over-charge and reverse polarity protection so you don’t have to worry about constantly checking if it has been charged. As mentioned earlier I used the HL20 0ver a five hour session, I was switching between High and Low modes throughout the night and was using the lamp more than what I usually would I was testing out its various features. The battery did not fail and I would consider the amount I used it as more than what would be generally be required in a nights fishing. Conclusion Ferei offer a range of various headlamps with various power levels with the HL20 at 600 Lumens being the most powerful in the range and $129 it is an excellent investment and very good value. It is a great unit and I think you would be hard pressed to find anything on the market that is as powerful, comfortable and user friendly as the HL20 at this price. This unit is great for fishing, camping, hiking and basically anything where you want hands free light. It has great safety functions, excellent battery life and is built tough. By Aaron McGrath

The High setting is pretty self explanatory and this is the lamp at it its brightest and most powerful. The Med/User is excellent as you can adjust the power of the beam, you can dull it down to preserve battery life or for use in situations where minimal light is required. The Strobe

DISTRIBUTED BY: HI-TECH ILLUMINATION WEB: FEREI.COM.AU

RRP: $199.00

GOLDEN MEAN GREEN ARROW

The Green Arrow has a great original look and is finished nicely all over.

Length:

6’4”

Style:

Two Piece

Sections:

2

Cast Weight:

1.75-7 grams

Line Rating:

2-4 kg

The Green Arrow is a dedicated bass rod that is designed for light lure casting. Although you will get away with casting lures a little heavier than the 7gm this rod states as it’s max cast weight, it’s a rod that is designed for those that want to throw out light surface lures, soft plastics and small hard bodies. It’s short length somewhat impedes casting distance but is a necessary compromise for the land based bass angler that is casting under tress into snags. The relatively soft tip makes up for the lack of length and I was able to cast small poppers with ease and accuracy using a 2500 size reel with 2kg braid. The High-Modulus graphite blank is extremely light and the rod is beautifully balanced.

Conclusion While Golden Mean is still a relatively unknown brand, internet research shows user reviews various from forums across the country to be very positive and I agree. This is an excellent rod that has been designed with a dedicated purpose. It is versatile and could be used for cod, mangrove jack and pinkies. I believe this rod is best suited to the land based Australian bass angler that goes trekking through the bush seeking out streams and rivers in thick scrub. It’s durable construction, quality parts, light weight and short length provide an excellent rod at a great price.

Retrieving The Green Arrow has a soft tip but offers just enough brawn in the tip of the rod to have good control when working light lures on the surface and below. It’s a very sensitive blank and is well suited working smaller crank baits as well as a variety of surface lures.

By Adrian Von Nordica DISTRIBUTED BY: ANGLERMATE WEB: ANGLERMATE.COM.AU

Fighting The butt is about 12 inches in length and I find the longer butt comfortable and an asset when a good fish unexpectedly strikes and you have to work him out of structure in tight and scrubby areas. The rod has a slow taper with the bulk of power in the bottom third of the rod.

The blank has a great feel and is suited to casting light lures and pulling fish from snags.

Hardware and Finish The Green Arrow is equipped with quality hardware. The Fuji stainless frame SIC guides provide easy casting, reduce wind knots and provide excellent line lay. Quality EVA grips and a Fuji reel sit with a hooded EVA feeder that screws down on to the reel looks great and secures the reel without the need for adjustment on a long days fishing. The Green Arrow is finished in British racing green and has an original and classy look.

The hooded Fuji reel seat looks great and is comfortable in the hand.

PG. 44

HOOKED UP ISSUE 7

AUGUST 2012

WWW.HOOKEDUPMAGAZINE.COM.AU


the hooked up review TAIRYO NANO SPEED

RRP: $279.00

The Japanese lettering on the broken butt looks great and the rod has a good all over finish.

The adjustable hook hanger is an excellent addition and the best in the business.

Tairyo are a new player on the rod market who are offering a new blank composition in the form of nano technology. This innovative blank material offers a blank with exceptional strength, light weight and a great feel and action. They are finished well with modern design and the nano speed we have for review provided pleasurable results. Casting The fast load and well balanced soft tip of the Nano Speed blank make for a rod that can cast a variety of lures good distances and with good accuracy. The extended broken butt means you can cast with one hand or two and the Fuji tangle free guides make for no fuss smooth casting. The Tairyo could prettt much cast any lure you were wanting too using the kind of line class this rod has been designed for. There is no excess wobble after the cast and it feels great in the hand.

Retrieving The rod loads up fast in order to move even a light lure with fast jerks and twitches and can easily perform “walk the dog” style retrieves with surface lures. Subtle bites from yellowfin bream were easily detectable and showed the Tairyo to be a sensitive rod. Fighting Fighting a fish is where this rod is at its best and the nano tech blank is most noticeable. After performing well on a few bream I wanted to test the blank on larger fish so moved on towards a reef that I knew was full of pinkies. I was losing daylight so threw out pilchard tails with a small sinker. Catching pinkies around the 30-35cm really showed that the Nano Speed has a lot of grunt whilst maintaining great sensitivity on subtle and finicky bites. The fast taper gives great control and is very pleasurable to fight with. This rod is easily

capable of comfortably landing fish of a much larger size with far greater drag pressures than what most would use it for. Hardware and Finish The Tairyo is equipped with Fuji Sic tangle free guides and this adds to the over all great feel and casting ability of this rod. The Fuji VSS hooded reel seat is a nice aesthetic touch that feels good in the hand. The broken butt with Japanese lettering looks the part and is attractive to today’s modern fishermen. This rod easily has the best hook hanger I have ever used (it moves up and down to suit various lures). Conclusion With a RRP of $279 this rod is starting to move into the upper realm of price points. Not designed for the “average” angler and not designed for the discerning bream aficionado

either, this rod is suited to many bream anglers who love quality gear. Although a still relatively unknown brand I am sure Tairyo will start to make a great name for itself if it keeps producing quality rods like this. By Adrian Von Nordica DISTRIBUTED BY: ANGLERMATE WEB: WWW.ANGLERMATE.COM.AU

Length:

7’0”

Spin:

Two Piece

Cast Weight:

Not Stated

Line Rating:

2-4 kg

A powerful blank that is great on the fight and well suited to casting a range of lures.

PG. 46

HOOKED UP ISSUE 7

AUGUST 2012

WWW.HOOKEDUPMAGAZINE.COM.AU


WWW.HOOKEDUPMAGAZINE.COM.AU

AUGUST 2012

ISSUE 7 HOOKED UP

PG. 47



HOOKED UP 7