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January 2014




RSA R24.95 including VAT Other countries: R22.50 excl. VAT




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the ticks all the boxes! LIDAY




South Coast Tourism_DPS.indd 2






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The South Coast is the perfect destination to complete your

Bucket List! No matter how extravagant or extreme! Smile with a Crocodile Go Fishing Get aggro with Paintball Feel the roll of The White Water Rapids Face your fear on the Gorge Swing Feel the vertigo on the Suspension Bridge Immerse yourself in Captivating Culture

Get HOOKED on fun! Make the SOUTH COAST your catch of the DAY! South Coast Tourism_DPS.indd 3

Experience the thrill of The Zip Line Surf your Soul Out Peddle Power Off-Road with MTB Madness Wow Yourself at the Water Park Befriend a Shark Land The Fish Of Your Dreams Find yourself in upland Forests and Trails


2013/10/17 4:36 PM

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8 January 2014



8 DIY MADAGASCAR Part 2: Madagonia 12 HAPPY HOUR AT THE BUCKTAIL BAR Part 1: Bucktail jigs 17 SCRATCHING IN KWAZULU-NATAL Tips, tricks and tackle

FEATURES 22 THE SQUIDDY An exciting new lure


27 AFRIKAANS Verbeter jou gooiafstand

REGULARS 34 TACKLE & GEAR What’s hot, new and happening in the angling industry 36 CATCH ALBUM Readers’ catches on display in our angling gallery, with exciting prizes up for grabs

41 41

39 BAIT REVIEW Rotten redbait 41 RECIPE Eeltail barbel 44 COMPETITION Subscribe to RSD and stand a chance of winning

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The Kob Lure is specially designed for beach casting. The LONG CAST SYSTEM features an internal magnetic body which moves to the tail when The Kob Lure is specially designed forweight beach casting. The LONG CAST SYSTEM casting. This themagnetic balance body to theweight back ofwhich the lure to increase casting features an shifts internal moves to the tail when distance. Once the lurethe lands the weight to the andcasting is held in casting. This shifts balance to themoves back ofback the lure to front increase place by the magnet. distance. Once the lure lands the weight moves back to the front and is held in place by the magnet. A large rattle chamber in the head sends out vibrations to attract kob, especiallyinat night and in stained water. to attract kob, A large rattle chamber the head sends out vibrations especially at night and in stained water.

When casting the weight detaches from the magnet and When casting the weight moves to the tail. This givesand detaches from the magnet the lure more moves to thestability tail. Thisand gives the lure more stability and casts further casts further Once the lure lands the Once the in lure lands weight is held place bythe the weight ismagnet held in place by the magnet

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Length(3 (3 inch) inch) :: 7cm Length Weight::6.5g 6.5g Weight Molting Cracker Molting Cracker

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MudPrawn Prawn Mud


Length(4.5 inch) : 12cm Length(4.5 inch) : 12cm Length(5.5 inch) : 14cm Length(5.5 inch) : 14cm

S.R.P. S.R.P.R229. R229.9595

Swimming Prawn Swimming Prawn



Length : 14cm Length :: 21g 14cm Weight Weight : 21g

Sardine Sardine



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(EG047) (EG047) (EG047) 022022RedRedHead (EG047) Head

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2013/12/11 2:45 PM




January 2014




RSA R24.95 including VAT Other countries: R22.50 excl. VAT



Publishers Picasso Headline (Pty) Ltd Times Media Building, Central Park Black River Park, Fir Street, Observatory 7925 Tel: +27 21 469 2400 Fax: +27 (0) 86 6822 926





ON THE COVER Jason Sheppard with a nice blue fin kingie taken during his trip in Madagascar. Photograph courtesy of Graeme Field

Head of Editorial & Production Raina Julies Editor Dean Pretorius Copy Editor June Hare Proofreader Fikiswa Majikela Production Editor Shamiela Brenner Content Coordinator Natasha Smith Advertising Coordinator Nazley Samsodien


Contributors Craig Thomassen Dean Dickinson Dean Pretorius Rob Kyle Graeme Field Jacques Ackhurst Roy Skea Head of Design Studio Jayne Macé-Ferguson Senior Designer Shaun Reddiar

HAPPY NEW YEAR AND WELCOME to our new-look RSD. We have totally revamped your favourite read. And not only do we have a new look and feel, but we’ve heard your calls for more educational articles, and this year, we’re focusing on bringing you more of that. We’re also committing to showcasing more exotic destinations, but will also be featuring popular and offthe-beaten track SA destinations. I’m also very excited that the team and I will be branching out into different facets of salt-water angling – so watch this space. Our readers will be glad to have Craig Thomassen back this month with an in-depth article on bucktails – these lures were not that popular in times gone by but are fast gaining popularity in all facets, including shore, estuary and offshore angling. This two-parter is one not to be missed. An article with a difference this month comes from another established RSD contributor, Rob Kyle. He writes about a homemade lure his brother Ewan has dubbed, the Squiddy. For those who read Ewan’s contribution last month on targeting GT in Kosi Bay and saw the images of him with numerous trophy fish, it will be easy to understand how this youngster could design a lure that would out-fish many production models. After I first previewed the article, I spent a number of hours trying to make something that a fish would eat – no joy yet, but I am sure that I soon will find a fish dumb enough to fool. For those of you who are still on holiday in KwaZulu-Natal, I have written an article on my favourite scratching fish; some of these are great sport, but even tastier on the coals. As usual though, I must ask that you limit your catch, don’t catch your limit!

Dean Pretorius

Check us out on facebook – search: Rock, Surf & Deep.

Designer Mfundo Ndzo Subscriptions and Distribution Shihaam Adams Business Manager Robin Carpenter-Frank Project Manager Lynton Nocky Senior Sales Consultant Ryan-Wayde Hannival Financial Accountant Lodewyk van der Walt

Senior GM: Newspapers and Magazines Mike Tissong Associate Publisher Jocelyne Bayer



Copyright: Picasso Headline. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in any form without the written consent of the publishers. The publishers are not responsible for unsolicited material. Rock, Surf and Deep is published monthly by Picasso Headline Reg: 59/01754/07. The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Picasso Headline. All advertisements/ advertorials and promotions have been paid for and therefore do not carry any endorsement by the publishers.

JANUARY 2014 RSD | 5

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AND JIGGING The Bazaruto Archipelago. Jigstar Africa explored the area as a jigging and popping destination, with a 4-day fishing adventure around Bazaruto and it’s northern reefs. By Roy Skea

WE WERE BASED AT Cashew Bay Lodge, Inhassoro, 60km north of Vilanculos airport and fishing off Shameless, their 21’ Butt Cat. Our aim was to investigate the area as an affordable option to some of our other popping and jigging destinations in New Zealand and the South Pacific. The lodge is hosted by Derek and Wendy Flaxman, who collected us at the airport. We unpacked our tackle, and then, while we planned the first day’s route, we enjoyed a few snacks at the bar. We split the area into two sections: • The first was the northern part of Bazaruto Island with shallow reefs just off the backline around the lighthouse and some deep holes that drop off to 130m east of the northern point. • The second was the 25 Mile Reef that starts 12km north of Bazaruto Island and runs for about 8km with pinnacles that rise from 25m to 13m. We were on the water early the following day and headed for the point of Bazaruto, around the sandspit and onto some of the deeper drops to target amberjack. With the spring tides, it was important to fish the tide on the low, with the least current for our drifts. It wasn’t too long before Graham was on with a decent fish. His Jigging Master arced and dragged on his JM PE8 reel, holding the fish. A few minutes later, the hook pulled, the line slackened and we all looked at each other. ‘That was a good fish, almost certain it was an AJ, I don’t even think he knew he was hooked.’ We did the drift a few more times and Graham was on again. His rod bent and this time slackened off on the drag to make sure the hook wouldn’t pull. Ten metres from the boat, the line slackened. ‘Not again’ Graham muttered to himself. This time, though, it was the taxman taking his share. The tide had now turned and we would have to use the motors to hold the drift, so we moved off to some 70m structure. A few drifts later and Roy was on a small amber. Nothing to boast about, but we were now on the scoreboard. We did a few more drifts and everyone had a few hits, dropped a few fish and lost a few jigs, on king mackerel, we guessed. We ended the day popping the back

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FIGHTING A GT Fighting a good GT on 25 Mile Reef.

line off Baz with ideal GT structure, an amazing stretch that is full of action. Just watch those curlers that can come from nowhere. There were a few hits with small GTs hunting in the white water, but unfortunately it was 16h00 and we had to head back to the lodge. The next day on the water, we headed east from Cashew-Bay to 25 Mile Reef and found some great structure with pinnacles at 13m. Out with the popping sticks and we all used a variety of surface lures: a twitch-bait that is the latest in the Jigstar range with an amazing darting action that can be fished faster than the stickbaits; a Darkstar GT Mania popper that the GTs can’t resist, and a Darkstar stickbait that we let sink for a few seconds and then we used a slower retrieve action. After a few drifts, we have our first fish on, a GT of about 15kg on the GT Mania popper. With the drag set high, we kept the fish off the reef and had it on the boat for a few quick snaps, then we let it back in the water to fight another day. There were a lot of bait fish around, so we spent some time casting into shoals of fusileers and the odd shoal of bonita that were within casting distance of the boat. Then we upped sticks and moved onto

GT ON A HERU DARKSTAR CUBERA A Jigging Master GT Monster 78 came handy in catching this oke.

another piece of structure about 3km into 25 Mile Reef. Same pattern with a drift over the structure, and the blooping popper is smashed. Graham is on with a good GT, rod bowed and the fish running. After a good fight, we have the fish on the boat. It seems that the popper is what they are looking for, but we all persist with our plan. Then Roy’s twitch-bait is hit by a king mackerel that darts into the air with the lure in its mouth. Worried that those teeth would make light work of the leader, we had the fish on the boat within a few minutes. Not too long afterward, we had another king mackerel on; this time, it smashed

LARGE GT CATCH This couta also loved the DarkStar GT Mania 130g.

the popper and then darted under the boat, dipping the rod into the water, and we had to manoeuvre the boat to land the fish. We drifted a few more times over the structure and changed over to light jigging tackle that was hit by a few green jobfish, baracuda and king mackerel. The weather picked up and we headed back to the lodge for a few cold ones and fresh sashimi. All in all, the day produced six species and some amazing popping structure that is known for large GTs in excess of 40kg. ■ JANUARY 2014 RSD | 7

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MADAGASCAR In this article, Graeme Field relates the adventures they had on their follow-up trip – this time a shore- and flatsfishing mission. By Graeme Field THE SEA WAS OILY, like polished glass, and the air swelteringly hot. We stopped the boat and glanced at each other. Straight ahead of us, as if someone had drawn across the sea with a ruler, was a perfectly defined wind line. We stopped literally 50m away from it and scratched our heads in amazement. While there was still not a breath of wind on the boat, on the other side of the wind line the sea was almost white with spray as the wind blew relentlessly out to sea. We donned our rain jackets, battened down the hatches and slipped across into another world. There was no swell to speak of, but the chop sent sheets of water whipping across the boat. Within minutes, we were drenched with spray and were soon shivering with cold as the spray soaked our jackets, then our shirts and then our skin. After two days of hard travel, our final destination was in sight, but it hardly seemed to get any closer as we moved painstakingly slow through the wind and chop, navigating our way through numerous shallow reefs and shoals that lurked dangerously just below the surface. The talk had dried up on the boat as we kept our heads low against the weather, but the excitement was palpable. We’d been eyeing out a collection of islands and coral atolls on Google Earth for a while. My two Madagascar Fishing Adventures partners had done an initial exploratory trip a month earlier, returning like two babbling idiots a few days later

with stories of sight-casting, to GTs on foot on white sandflats, Seychelles style, with no sign of any other humans. I didn’t need further motivation and quickly booked flights to Madagascar for a follow-up trip. After a lot of planning, shopping and packing, we departed on our boat King Julien, loaded with food, tents, tackle and camera gear, in search of the remote atolls and flats that had produced such insane fishing on the previous trip. A few wet hours after crossing the wind line, we finally slipped into the lee of a low-lying sandy coral island with extensive flats stretching far to our left and right. It was low tide and the fringing coral reef was treacherous, so we prowled up and down looking for a way into a sheltered beach where we could set up our fly camp. But with much of the coral reef exposed, there didn’t appear to be any way in until the later afternoon high tide. So we headed towards a long sandflat and slowly nursed King Julien through a maze of coral bommies, finally sliding the bow onto an exposed sand spit. It was too risky to leave the boat unmanned, so three of us jumped off the bow and left Brandon behind to watch the boat. Nothing beats arriving at a brand new, unexplored destination and getting stuck into fish immediately. We were armed mostly with chisel-nosed poppers, and within minutes packs of good-sized greenspot kingies were charging out from the coral heads and smashing our poppers. We landed a few of these

FIRST FISH One of the first fish we ever caught there – exploratory trip No. 1.

hard-fighting fish before Jason started shouting and waving, his rod bent double as he battled the first GT of the day. Even though we had our backs to the wind, there was so much spray flying around that I couldn’t get the camera out. The fishing was happening so fast that most of the fish had to be released without having their pictures taken. Within two hours, we’d all caught midsized GTs, greenspot and bluefin kingies. As the tide got higher, we returned to the boat, grinning like idiots after a truly wild session. A number of fish came out from around the coral heads, lurking just off

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the edges, but we’d also seen and cast to a few cruising GTs in knee-deep water on the flats. With the higher tide, we were able to get to the island and the deserted beach, so after securing King Julien to a solid old tree, we tackled up again and went to explore the island on foot. It’s a fascinating place – harsh, rugged, desolate and windswept. Jagged undercut rock edges fringe the exposed windward side of the island, just like Cosmoledo in the Seychelles. Low tundra flora like grasses struggle against the wind and dry climate, strange birds of prey hover

in the skies and turtle nests line the beaches. Inspired by the harsh Patagonialike ruggedness that contrasts with the tropical coral reefs of Madagascar, we dubbed our new discovery Madagonia. There is a high sandy ridge on the northern point of the island, the perfect viewpoint to spot fish and take photos from. I’d just reached the top of the ridge when Jason started shouting wildly at me. I looked up and there was a 40lb GT just cruising slowly across the white sand, 10m from the edge. I quickly whipped the video camera out just in time for Jason to make the cast. The fish turned

immediately, chased down the popper and smashed it right at his feet, but it didn’t stick. Instead of casting again, Jason just looked at me, doubling over in exasperation at the near miss. ‘Cast again! Cast again!’ I shouted over the wind, because the fish was still hanging around, and he quickly gathered his wits and sent his popper out again. Twice more the GT followed, but with less enthusiasm, before eventually cruising off towards the turtle grass and out of sight. A couple greenspots and bluefin kingies followed as we worked our way around the island, before we again struck JANUARY 2014 RSD | 9

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BLUEFIN KINGIE A bluefin kingie taken on the flats on popper. ON THE HIGH TIDE Another GT caught from shore on the high tide around the island.

gold. We found an exposed bay where big schools of greenspots, salad fish, wave garrick and mullet had gathered, often visible on the surface between the chop. We were fishing right into the teeth of the wind, which hampered our casting somewhat, but it didn’t matter. On virtually every cast, our poppers were tracked by schools of greenspots and salads, and every now and again a bigger greenspot kingie would hook up. We had to be patient though, because every hour or so the salads would suddenly go flying in all directions and someone’s popper would disappear in an explosion of spray and foam as a big GT charged in and engulfed it. Needless to say, those salads were a bit scarce for a while afterwards. We landed some great GTs from the shore, all in the 20lb to 40lb range, which was fantastic on the small chisel-noses. The biggest fish was hooked by Gavin and, despite some desperate advice and attempted running after it, the fish completely spooled him. It’s never nice to know that a majestic fish like that is swimming around with a few hundred metres of braid trailing behind it. But we hope that the fact that we only fish with single, completely de-barbed hooks means that the popper will quickly come loose and fall out of the fish’s mouth. GTs are tough blighters and can survive a lot more than we think – I’ve seen it first hand

in the Seychelles on numerous occasions. Sitting around a campfire that evening, on a totally deserted island as the sun set behind King Julien, we truly felt as though we were the only people on earth. The next four days passed in a blur of wind, smashing takes and countless kingies as we worked the flats on the low tide and the edges of the island on the high tide. Parts of the flats are solid white sand and easy to wade, but a large portion of the reef was covered in absolutely pristine live coral, of a density that I have never seen before. Usually, on coral reefs one can pick a path through the live coral by standing on the dead areas and patches of bare rock, but here there was nowhere to put your feet without standing on live coral. Beautiful plates and staghorn corals overlapped each other, tropical fish darting between them, and we forgot about fishing for a while and just admired the truly untouched reef. A finger of extremely deep water winds its way along the one side of the reef, and we managed to make our way through an area of less dense coral to some spectacular deep cuts that disappeared

into the deep blue depths right at our feet. After a couple of huge boils behind our poppers, we decided that we had no chance of landing a fish in such rugged terrain and left those drop-offs for a later trip when we could fish them from the boat instead of on foot. We’ve made another three or four trips since then, each time catching more GTs on foot on the flats, as well as around the coral edges from the boat. The area consists of a dazzling array of flats, reefs, channels, drop-offs and mangrove systems and we have barely scratched the surface. While we have enjoyed some spectacular calm-weather days, the windier days seemed to produce the best fishing. It definitely seems to be a case of weather that is good for the fish is not necessarily good for the fishermen. It is not a fair-weather fishing destination, and not for the faint at heart. But for the more hardcore adventurers among us, it is an awesome trip. We are planning to go back for three or four weeks in April, with clients, to continue to pioneer and explore this dynamic fishery. I can’t wait to return… ■ JANUARY 2014 RSD | 11

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It is no secret that the bucktail jig is one of my favourite lures. I never go fishing without one in my bag, no matter where I am going and what type of fishing I am going to do. By Craig Thomassen THEY ARE VERY BASIC-LOOKING lures, and the first time I ever saw a bucktail jig I wasn’t awfully impressed. My first experience of fishing with one did little to improve my initial opinion of these simple lures, either. However, with some practice I started catching fish on them and they quickly became a firm favourite. Over the years I have caught everything on them, from tuna to grunter, and have used them in every imaginable situation, always with full confidence that they will produce a fish – and they usually do. About a year ago, I wrote an article on fishing bucktails from drifting boats offshore. In this article I will focus on the use of bucktails in estuaries and fishing them in the surf from the beach and rocks. These are areas where bucktails are very successful and where most anglers can spend hours honing their skills in the use of these humble lures.

THE PIONEERS To my knowledge, some of the first anglers to use these humble lures with regular success in South African waters were anglers like Dave Alcock, father of the accomplished Alcock twins, and Bruce Truter. These salty old Eastern Cape fishermen had productive rivers on their

doorsteps and spent much time fishing them; both felt that bucktail jigs were one of the first lures to get packed for an outing. The first bucktail that I ever owned was given to me by the legendary Doug Swannell, also from the Eastern Cape. With his range of Predator lures, Doug used to be the man behind every bucktail that you would find in a tackle store in those days, and they are still some of the finest saltwater lures available.

TO TIE OR NOT TO TIE The first thing for us to think about is: why choose to tie on a bucktail jig in the first place? The answer to that is simple: a bucktail jig will be eaten by any fish that will eat an artificial lure and is also extremely versatile. It can be used in almost any conditions, from strong currents to placid water, from shallow banks to deep channels, in the surf zone or in an estuary. In all these areas, it can be presented to fish in a way that will make it look like an easy meal, and it is likely to be eaten. The bucktail jig is one of those lures that is always in motion, even when the angler is not retrieving; it is either dropping through the water or the tail is pulsing in the current.

THE TOOLS Bucktail jigs are given their attractive movement by the angler. This is generally done by twitching the rod tip, which causes the lure on the end of the line to move enticingly in the water. With the combination of fast action graphite rods and thin braided line with its non-stretch qualities, we have the tools to have

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The basic aim of fishing a bucktail is to make it swim in the water in such a way as to be attractive to fish – very simple. BUCKTAILS Gurnards often eat bucktails that are worked along the bottom.

absolute control over these lures and are able to fish them with far more finesse than we could in the past. This alone is reason enough to dig out the old bucktails and give them a swim. As technology has moved on and new lures have replaced old ones, bucktail jigs have found themselves at the bottom of the bag. Basically, in our generation these

fine old lures have been replaced by soft plastics, the ‘dropshot’ craze eclipsing bucktail fishing to a large degree. Those stalwarts who continued to use bucktails were always rewarded with fish, and for good reason – they are great lures. Bucktails have some advantages, such as being more cast-friendly; you can throw a bucktail further than the same-

sized profile of soft plastic because it is more aerodynamic. This can be a real advantage in the case of, say, trying to reach some nice working water on a bank in the surf. Other advantages of bucktails are that they are inexpensive, they last a long time if you look after them, they come in every size and colour you can imagine, and JANUARY 2014 RSD | 13

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Alcocks Fishing Tackle is a family-run business that has been operating for 21 years in Port Elizabeth. The company has vast experience in fishing exotic destinations and the wild coast in the whole of South Africa. With a family who has made fishing its livelihood, we guarantee to give you the best advice on choosing your fishing gear. Alcocks Fishing Tackle manufactures all of the tin-lead heads, which are brilliant for most of the game fish in South African waters. We also make the lead head, made out of stainless steel, the Alcocks’ slim spoon, and has been manufacturing since 1969. We sell a wide range of plugs made by Douglas Swannell, and stock stainless steel clips made by Dennis Swannell. Our latest range of tackle

Alcocks fishing tackle comes in the form of Dave Alcock signature series graphite rods from 6.6ft to 9ft; they have fuji alconite guides, fuji reelseat, and a cork grip, and are of the highest quality blanks. We are custom-rod builders, with a father who has 45 years of rod-building experience, from rock and surf, to tiny rods for river fishing. Many of the composite development blanks were developed over the years with the help of many top fishermen from around Port Elizabeth. Five years ago, the Alcock twins started recording a series of fishing techniques with Dean McDonald; this has helped many fishermen become good and successful in fishing. The dvd is highly recommended for both experienced and inexperienced fishermen. Alcocks Fishing Tackle goes out to fish every week. We make sure we fish the wildcoast monthly and also other destinations in South Africa. This way we can provide the best service to you and sell you the correct tackle suitable for whichever fishing destination of your choice.

For further details, please contact Chad and Lando Alcock on 041 365 6868 or

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WIRE Sometimes you need to use a short piece of wire with your bucktail.

LOW TIDE Working the deeper holes at low tide with a bucktail.

SURF Yellow buckails are great for targeting spotted pompano in the surf.

GARRICK Chris Schoultz with a garrick that ate a bucktail that he was casting for kob.

they have a movement in the water that cannot be imitated perfectly by any other lure – nothing else in the world moves like bucktail hair in the water. Another huge plus is that they are really easy to make and anybody can tie their own jigs up. This means that you can create custom bucktails for yourself, with your own colours, sizes and shapes according to the bait organisms found at your own fishing spots. There is always that extra bit of satisfaction when you catch a fish on a lure that you made yourself.

... AND ACTION The basic aim of fishing a bucktail is to make it swim in the water in such a way as to be attractive to fish – very simple. Apart from the action that you impart to the jig with your rod, there are other factors that affect the lure’s action.

Current, depth and structure are three of the most obvious and will have some effect on your jig during the course of each retrieve. A good idea is to identify which part of the water you specifically want to target and to ensure that while your jig is in that area, it is swimming the way that you want it to and at the right depth. It is likely that for at least a portion of the retrieve your lure is not going to be totally under your control, due to a bow in your line caused by current and/or wind. You want this to be happening in water that is not your primary target area. You can use current to your advantage and/or minimise its effect by your angle of cast and your lure placement. Factors such as water depth, current strength, surf, wind speed and direction and required casting distance all play a part in choosing what weight of bucktail

jig to tie onto the end of your line. That is even before the important consideration of the type of fish that you are targeting and their preferred bait size, or matching the size of your lure to the primary food source in the area. My rule of thumb is generally to go with the lightest jig head that I can get away with. If the jig is heavy enough to reach where I need to cast it to and can cut through the current and reach the bottom, then it is heavy enough. I don’t mind waiting a bit longer for it to sink down, as the lighter the jig is, the more enticing its movement will be in the water. ■ Craig Thomassen is the presenter of Inside Angling, which can be seen on SuperSport 8 on Monday nights at 7pm.

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SPECKLED SNAPPER A 'double decker' speckled snapper tagged and ready for release.

SCRATCHING Tips and tricks for reef fish in KwaZulu-Natal I am often asked what exactly scratching is – I think it originates from competitive anglers who, when the going gets tough in competitions, scale down and fish for edibles, especially among the reefs. By Dean Pretorius

DUE TO ANGLING PRESSURE, these scratching fish tend to be, in some areas, vulnerable to localised over-exploitation. It is imperative, then, to have all the tricks up your sleeve in order to get the bite. It is also important that anglers release a large number of these scratching fish, as most of them are really slow-growing. Correct handling and careful returning of

the fish you intend releasing will also go a long way toward insuring sustainability.

RODS AND REELS New Age grinders and braid are awesome for scratching, for light-tackle scratching in the gullies for stone bream and for bronze bream or galjoen. A 4500-size reel loaded with 20lb to 30lb braid and

an ultra-light or light rod (2oz to 5oz/11ft to 12ft) is ideal – my personal choice is the Posiden HMG ultra-light spinning rod matched with a Daiwa Execeler Oceano 4500 loaded with 33lb Gator Braid 8 Weave; a short 30lb to 50lb fluorocarbon leader rounds off an outfit that can handle most scratching fish. When scratching for bigger reef fish, or JANUARY 2014 RSD | 17

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Distributed by: Southern Power Products 76 Marine Drive, Paarden Eiland, Cape Town • Tel 021 511 0653 Fax 021 510 3049 email: • web:



CAVE BASS Stunning cave bass hooked on the sweetiepie trace – note the Korda anti-tangle sleeve.

CATFACE ROCKCOD Cod tagged and ready to go back.

My outfit of choice for heavier scratching would have to be the Daiwa Windcast 5500 with 48lb Gator Braid 8 Weave or Daiwa Tournament 48lb, matched with a Daiwa Saltiga 5500 spin rod (with slim grip).


SWEETIEPIE Close up of the sweetiepie or helicopter rig with float and Korda anti-tangle sleeve.

when I require a longer throw or heavier sinker, then I still stick to a grinder but up its size to a 5500- or 6000-size reel loaded with 50lb braid and a 100lb braid leader. A light to medium-heavy (5oz to 7oz] rod is ample here – the lighter in weight one can go, the better as scratching is often done in the worst weather conditions.

Two-bait traces are great for scratching – as the angler is doubling his chances of getting a bite or – better still – getting a double-up when the shoal passes. It also allows the angler to multi-target different species with different offerings. Recently, we have had great success using the so-called sweetiepie or helicopter rig, as used at the world games overseas. This trace really does increase bite rates, especially in a crowd – it seems to allow the bait far more free movement and doesn’t twist up in a strong wash. Although this trace seems involved, it is quite simple to do. You will need: • 1m of .50mm fluorocarbon • 2 No. 8 or No. 10 power swivels • 4 small clear beads • 20cm-piece of 0.40mm fluorocarbon, No. 6 Daiichi DH55 hook and a foam float for the top bait • 25cm-piece of 0.45mm fluorocarbon, No.

8 Daiichi DH55 hook for the bottom bait • No. 5 power swivel for the trace

Method About 20cm along the .50mm fluorocarbon, make a 3-turn figure of eight, put on a bead, then a No. 8 swivel, another bead and then make another 3-turn figure of eight pulled up right against the top bead. Do the same for the bottom hook, about 65cm from the top hook. Attach the hook snood, hooks and foam float. At the bottom of the trace, add a piece of 20lb nylon with a figure-of-eight for the sinker. You can adjust the hook size and snood strength according to species or structure. Another trick on this trace is to use a Korda trace splitter (a carp product); this increases the effectiveness of this trace.

SINGLE, BIGGER BAIT TRACES For bigger reef species that require bigger bait and stronger traces, I still use a sweetiepie but beef up the main trace to 0.70mm to 0.80mm, the power swivel to a No. 5 or No. 6 and the snood to 0.55mm to 0.70mm. Hooks must be ultra-sharp and really strong – I use a 3/0 to 6/0 Gamakatsu Soi Ring. Fishing this trace, in conjunction with the dingle dangle or bait holder, has really JANUARY 2014 RSD | 19

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ROCKCOD A yellow-belly rockcod.

proved successful, especially for the rock cod and cave bass species.

MY FAVOURITE SCRATCHING SPECIES Bronze bream Possibly the No. 1 scratching species found in this area. The smaller double-hook trace is the best method to target this species – pink or red prawn, crayfish, rock crab, cracker shrimp and chokka blob baits are the best way to target this species. The small float really does increase the bite rate. The bronze breeam is best targeted in late winter to spring; look out for working white water (little or no sand) and the presence of red or green weed on the rocks, this is a sure sign that bream may be in the vicinity.

Stone bream Big warm seas are the best time to target these summer fish – an extremely finicky target species. Light traces, small hooks, light sinkers and neat small baits are the order of the day when targeting stone bream. Although prawn, sardine and other bait types will work, stone bream are best targeted with live cracker shrimp (sand prawn) – a single shrimp per hook with little or no cotton and the lightest

possible sinker (1oz to 2oz). Fish close to shore in rough working water – these fish put up a good fight and can reach over 2.5kg in weight.

you would for bronze bream. These fish are slow-growing, so remember to catch and release.

Rockcod (catface and yellowbelly)

For those planning to scratch in Zululand or Mozambique, this is one species you need to target. Super-strong, this fish grows to a whopping 10kg; believe me, a fish of over 4kg takes some landing, especially in its rocky habitat. Broken reef and areas off the many ledges found in northern KwaZulu-Natal and Mozambique are home to many of these fish that have responded well to the marine-protected areas. Although they will eat most bait types, the speckled snapper has a penchant for fishheads, especially a mackerel head, which is great for targeting the snapper, as it is relatively peckerproof. The bite from this fish can be quite something and, if not alert, you may be pulled off your feet. Strong hooks, a .080mm snood (fluorocarbon, as the water is generally clean) and a good leader are essential if you wish to land one of them. These are five of my favorite scratching species in KwaZulu-Natal; however, one of the joys of scratching in this area is that there are a multitude of species one can expect to catch. ■

Both these species are great scratching fish; fish in excess of 5kg of both species are taken from shore and are great sport, good points and good to eat. The rockcod are not fussy feeders and will eat prawn, crayfish and chokka bait; personally, I have had more success with flesh bait such as sardine, redeye and shad. I have also had good success using the dingle dangle, especially with a big piece of flotation – I can only surmise that the foam lifts the bait off the reef and the free movement of the dingle dangle induces the bite. Remember to fish heavy abrasion-resistant snoods and a light sinker line, as these fish often dive for cover once hooked.

Cave bass This is another reef dweller that is great to target, especially after dark. As its name implies, this fish lives in the foulest of structure. Fish bait like redeye, mackerel and sardine work really well but the best results seem to come from the chokka blob bait – fish it much bigger than

Speckled snapper

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Since his creation, Squiddy has a tally of 14 species and literally hundreds of individuals to his name.

Photographer: Philip de Villiers. Steyn Thinkstock

I WAS WAFTING THROUGH the house late one night when something dangling off my brother’s computer stand caught my eye, and we met for the first time – this aptly named Squiddy and I. It really was love at first sight and I spent a while just admiring him before finally turning in for the night. And then to lie awake enjoying the thrilling sensation of knowing that a bite was not far off. Sure enough, the next afternoon we went out on the Kosi lakes and while a friend and I futilely threw Rapalas, my brother Ewan was flicking a second, slightly heavier Squiddy that he had created during the day. I suppose I should describe the Squiddy to you. Well, according to its creator, it’s just a bit of epoxy with piano wire through it; but there is actually a little bit more to him that is worthy of description. Basically, it’s just a short piece of piano wire with a small treble hook (this has since evolved into a single hook) on the one end and a body made of Mylar tubing coated in epoxy. Ewan carefully shaped this body into a perfect little squid shape and glued sticky fly-eyes onto it. There are also various weighted sinkers inside the back end of Squiddy bodies to give them just the right action. Ewan then tied a bit of white Angel Silk onto the hook and stood back to admire his work. Simple as it sounds and simple as it is, this cute little creation of my brother’s genius should not be underestimated. The Squiddy has proved quite irresistible to the fish around Kosi Bay. There’s always a bit of a tingle to the first cast – just in case you’re away. The Squiddy’s maiden voyage was no different. At the first spot, under some hopefullooking sticks, we tried the first tentative flick, and we were not disappointed. A whole shoal of tiny bigeye kingfish came busting out of nowhere and fought each other to zap the Squiddy. After Ewan had hauled in three in a row, we decided to move on to bigger things. We were off to a flying start. Sadly, a slow evening followed, with nothing at all to be seen

moving in spite of us casting for a few hours into good-looking water and fading light. The three fish that did come out, however, were all on the Squiddy – which was satisfying. They were two decentsized salad fish and a little greenspot kingie, all on blind casts. Rather inspired by the results, we headed out at 04h00 the next morning, armed with six rods – and, of course, a few more Squiddys. We were set to conquer. We fished a bit in the middle of First Lake, knocking the salad fish once again and also getting two better-sized greenspots. When the water went quiet, we moved

into the shallows to see what species Ewan could tickle up while Juan and I threw tiny baits. To our delight, artificial out-fished good old stinky bait; they just could not get enough of little old Squiddy. Casting close to the traps, a small rock salmon was the first greedy little brute to jump on, closely followed by several more, and then by a spotted snapper. They simply could not leave it alone and great fun was had. Using a Sienna 1000 and 2lb braid, even a tiny fellow gives quite a tussle. We were all very surprised when a cast along a reed bank resulted in a fat Mozambique tilapia.

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It’s not often that you get to witness the birth and first trials of a new fishing product. I have just been fortunate enough to enjoy that novel experience and I can tell you it’s a lot of fun – especially when it works! Admittedly, I played more of a moral support role in the design and production, but personally I think that’s rather important too. By Rob Kyle

After fishing out that spot, we moved to the next, and glassy, perch and even a moony were added to the tally in very quick succession – cast for cast, in fact. By the end of the morning’s boat trip, the species list was up to nine and, with Ewan getting stuck into a shoal of more tiny bigeyes, the total catch was well over 60 fish. After watching him reel in fish after fish, I decided it was time that I gave it a bash and nabbed his rod while he wasn’t looking. Needless to say, it didn’t stay secret for very long, as I could not keep my frustration at not catching a blessed thing quiet.

It turned out that it wasn’t quite as easy as it looked. A very fast, rapid-action retrieve was required. I simply couldn’t wrap my head around the combination – it either had great action or a rapid retrieve. After about 14 casts with no bite, Ewan took back his rod with a condescending glance my way and proceeded to also catch nothing. Seems I managed to not only catch nothing but also turn them off the bite. That takes special skill. Anyway, we got back to the house at around 10h00 and the weather was still great, so a little trip to the beach was definitely in order and, needless to say,

Squiddy came along too. Second throw in a gully right in front of where we walked onto the beach, a nice wave garrick smashed it, quickly followed by two more. The inexorable call of the ‘big one’ was getting to Ewan though, so he handed over the light stick to me and set off in search of better water. I was, of course, delighted and spent an hour or so catching about eight little wave garrick and efficiently irritating, and being irritated by, a wrasse that was just not quite big enough to get hooked, but knocked the lure every single time it passed over his head. So the wave JANUARY 2014 RSD | 23

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CAPTION HEADER Goeie tegniek.


garrick were species number 10. Ten species in the first proper outing was pretty indisputable proof that the Squiddy was a win. I was a bit disconcerted to add species number 11 to the list by hooking my old, blind poodle in the fur of her ear on the back swing as she loyally insisted on following me onto the rocks. The great thing about the whole venture is that size has absolutely nothing to do with it. The sheer fun of chasing species is so refreshing and makes you think outside the box again. The challenge and thrill in fishing is when you have to catch a fish that is hiding in an akward spot and requires a different cast or retrieve. Of course, if you put a few anglers together, an element of competition can’t help but raise its head, but when you are getting excited about a 14cm fish instead of a 10cm fish the competition is, somehow, not quite as fierce. Since his creation, Squiddy has a tally of 14 species and literally hundreds of individuals to his name. In spite of none of them being giants, the tally is still pretty impressive. Among that number are all four species of kingies that you commonly get here and I was proud to add GT, orange-stripe snapper and even a blackspot emperor to the list. Many hours and a lot of fun later, these tough and versatile little lures are still going


strong – although Ewan’s favourite one’s Angel Silk did get mauled off by the teeth of hundreds of baby bigeyes and has since been replaced. Subsequent to Squiddy’s great success, inspiration struck again and Ewan disappeared with a familiar gleam in his eye, returning a while later with the next stroke of genius – the aptly named Penny. A popper made from – you guessed it – a ballpoint pen. I confess to not being as taken with this prototype as I was with the Squiddy, as it looked a bit grubby and, well, not very tasty. But it seems I don’t know much because, with the first cast at some cover, he was smashed right out of the water by a shoal of nice rock salmon bashing each other out the way to get a tooth into the Penny. And they haven’t stopped since then.

The three fish that did come out, however, were all on the Squiddy – which was satisfying. The two of us went out the other day and caught 53 fish between us. I was throwing the Squiddy and a store-bought popper. Ewan was throwing the Penny and, annoyingly, he accounted for about 40 of the fish. It all just goes to show what you can do with a bit of imagination and inspiration. Needless to say, I have stashed all my interesting little treasures well out of sight just in case the gleam returns to his eye anytime soon. ■ JANUARY 2014 RSD | 25

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ONS IS ALMAL GELEER om oor die kop te gooi. Dit is die maklikste manier om te gooi, maar dis nie die korrekte manier om meer afstand te kry nie. Sodra hengelaars probeer verder gooi met hierdie styl, begin dinge gewoonlik verkeerd loop en kraaineste en gebreekte lyn is gewoonlik die resultate. Dit is baie keer nodig om meer as 100m te kan gooi om by die beste teikenarea uit te kom vir spesies wat van die strand af gevang kan word. In hierdie artikel sal ek meer uitbrei oor hoe om jou gooiafstand te verbeter. Gooiafstand het met meer as net jou gooi tegniek te doen. Die balans van jou toerusting en die manier waarop jou strop en aas gebou is maak alles ’n verskil, en elkeen is belangrik. Jy kan maar die duurste stok en katrol gebruik, en ’n sterk persoon wees, maar bou net jou strop en aas verkeerd of gebruik die verkeerde tegniek en jy sal nie ’n goeie gooiafstand behaal nie. Kom ons begin by die tegniek om pendulum-styl te gooi.

DIE LYF TEGNIEK Dit is veel makliker om vir ’n person wat nog nooit geleer visvang het nie, te leer om korrek te gooi as om vir ’n ou hand wat verkeerde gewoontes oor die jare aangeleer het, te probeer reg help. Baie mense het begin met die oor-die-kop-flop, soos ek dit noem, waar ’n hengelaar sy stok reguit van agter sy kop oor sy skouer voorentoe flop. Die gooiaksie maak staat op armspoed en al die krag kom uit die arms. Goeie-afstand gooiers sal vir jou sê jy sal nooit goeie afstande gooi mits jy nie uit jou lyf uit gooi nie. ’n Maklike manier om dit te verduidelik is soos volg : neem ’n baksteen en gooi dit uit ’n stilstaande posisie so ver as wat jy kan met jou regter arm (as jy regs aangelê is), en merk waar dit val. Neem weer die baksteen en hierdie keer gooi dit soos ’n diskus gooier; nou buig jou knieë en gooi met ’n swaaiende aksie. Kyk nou hoeveel verder die baksteen trek. Jou gooiaksie vir visvang werk presies dieselfde, hoe meer jy uit jou lyf uit gooi, hoe verder sal jy gooi.

PENDULUM AKSIE Begin deur om in jou gooiposisie te staan, voete wat na voor wys, of effens na die kant as dit ongemaklik is. Hou die stok


VERBETER JOU GOOIAFSTAND Min mense kan ’n afstand van meer as 100m gooi, en baie hengelaars sukkel om hul gooiafstand te verbeter. Die probleem is dat die meeste hengelaars van kleins af verkeerd geleer is. Geskryf deur Jacques Ackhurst voor jou op heup-hoogte. Kyk na waar jy wil gooi en kry dan vir jou ’n denkbeeldige teiken punt, so 45° op in die lug. Buig jou knieë effens en roteer dan jou lyf sonder om jou voete te skuif, sodat jou stok nou reguit na agter wys, nogsteeds op heuphoogte. Jou lyf is nou soos ’n opgewende spring, reg om los te skiet. Lig die punt van die stok op en die sinker sal na jou toe swaai. Laat dit sak en die sinker swaai

weg. Hier is jou tydsberekening belangrik. Jy sal met jou gooi begin wanneer die sinker van jou af wegswaai. Jy wil begin draai net voordat die sinker op sy verste punt van jou af is. Wanneer jy begin draai moet die sinker nog op pad agtertoe wees. Van hier af gebeur dinge vinnig. Begin jou gooi deur na vore te draai, jou elmboë te begin oplig sodat jou linker elmboog in die rigting waarin jy gaan gooi wys, JANUARY 2014 RSD | 27

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Konsentreer eerder om jou tegniek reg te kry, en sit jou merker op ’n afstand wat jy weet jy maklik kan gooi.

MAKSIMUM KRAG Henning wys hoe jou lyf moet draai vir maksimum krag.

en jou regter arm uitgestrek in ’n lyn met die stok na agter. Soos jy voorentoe begin swaai, probeer jou kop so gou as moontlik draai om na jou denkbeeldige teiken op 45° te kyk. Jou lyf en die stok sal amper automaties in daardie rigting volg. Dit is ook belangrik om met die linker arm nou te trek, terwyl jou regteram half geknak bly, soos ’n bokser wat wag om sy uitklop regter hou te slaan. Die stok se wentelbaan moet in ’n swaaiende aksie, van agter na voor, stelsematig beweeg van laag na hoog, en effens sywaarts verby jou skouer en nie reguit oor jou skouer nie. Net soos jy ’n diskus sal gooi. Halfpad deur die gooi sal die stok begin swaar voel in jou hande as die stok begin laai. Dit is waar jou regterarm vorentoe sal skiet, terwyl jou linkerarm sterk na onder trek op die stok. Daai laaste punch, as jy dit só kan noem. Hou jou stok op soos die sinker deur die lug trek en volg dit met die stok. Dit sal ’n bietjie vreemd voel in die begin, maar dit sal sommer gou soos tweede natuur wees om pendulum-styl te gooi. Moet asseblief nie probeer om afstand te gooi wanneer jy begin nie; dit kweek net slegte gewoontes. Konsentreer eerder om jou tegniek reg te kry, en sit jou merker op ’n afstand wat jy weet jy maklik kan gooi. Jy sal sommer vinnig

daai merker al verder weg van jou af begin skuif soos jou afstande verbeter.

BALANS, KATROL, STOK Alhoewel tegniek seker die belangrikste aspek van afstandgooi is, is dit net deel van die groter pakket. Jou stok en katrol, en die balans wat dit vorm saam met die sinker wat jy gooi, is bitter belangrik. ’n Sinker wat te swaar of te lig vir die stok is gaan jou aksie belemmer. ’n Ligte sinker gaan te vinnig trek en nie die stok laai nie, en ’n swaar een gaan te stadig trek en die stok oorlaai. Alle stokke wys hul beste sinker gewig op hulle, so bly by die vervaardiger se voorgestelde aanbeveling. Sinkers met ’n clip kan jy aan jou hoek haak, en die aas wat dan agter die sinker deur die lig trek, veroorsaak dat die aas minder weerstand deur die lig het; dit sal ’n merkwaardige verskil aan jou afstand maak. Die lyn wat jy gebruik maak natuurlik ook ’n verskil – hoe dunner die lyn, hoe verder kan jy gooi, want dunner lyn het minder weerstand deur die lug. Met die pendulum-styl is dit belangrik om ’n leader-lyn aan te sit wat die energie van die gooi slag, en die gewig van die sinker kan absorbeer. Maak net seker dat die knoop tussen jou hooflyn en leader deur jou stok se ogies kan gaan voor jy gooi. Daarom sal jy sien dat stokke wat swaarder sinkers kan gooi, groter ogies op het, sodat die

leader-knoop daardeur sal pas. ’n Goeie-kwaliteit katrol wat by die stok pas maak ook ’n verskil. ’n Duur katrol gooi beter, ja, maar sonder korrekte tegniek gaan dit nie veel van ’n verskil maak nie. Deesdae is dit nie net normale katrolle wat ver gooi nie; koffiemeule is ook gemaak om ver afstande te gooi en dieselfde afstande en soms verder kan met hulle bereik word. So as jy sukkel met kraaineste op normale Penn katrolle, is dit dalk die roete vir jou. ’n Aas wat mooi vaartbelyn gebou is en agter die sinker geclip word, kan maklik ’n ekstra 20m tot 30m op jou gooiafstand verbeter. ’n Aas wat nie vaartbelyn is nie en soos ’n helikopter in die lig spin kan jou meer as 20m tot 30m in afstand kos. Afstande van 180m plus is by die see moontlik. Maar iemand wat 180m gooi gaan nie altyd meer vis vang nie; jy moet nogsteeds op die regte plek gooi. Die verskil is net dat die hengelaar wat ver kan gooi, die teiken plekke kan haal, veral wanneer vis die dag ’n bietjie dieper wei, en hy kan ook gemakliker die korter afstande gooi sonder om te veel krag te gebruik. Hy kan ook groter aas gooi. Vir die manne wat klaar pendulum-styl gooi, korrekte balans en toerusting het, en nog sukkel om verder te gooi, is dit eenvoudig. Meer pap en meer tyd in die gym. ■ JANUARY 2014 RSD | 29

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TACKLE & GEAR This month’s scoop on the best technology and products on the market. THE GARMIN VIRB Garmin announces its first high-definition action camera series, the VIRB. The VIRB series comprises two compact, waterproof, easy-to-use HD 1080p action cameras – the VIRB and the VIRB Elite. With outstanding features and functionality, the VIRB combines a unique feature set that makes it easier than ever to capture life’s memories, whether it's action sports or family getaways. The VIRB features a rugged and waterproof (IPX-7) housing, so there is no extra case necessary to withstand the elements. The unique 1.4-inch Chroma™ colour display makes setup and playback a breeze and uses minimal power so the VIRB can record more than three hours of true HD (1080p) video on one charge. On-board video enhancement features such as digital image stabilisation and lens distortion correction ensure that footage recorded with the VIRB will look professional, even before editing. The VIRB can also capture high-quality still photos, while the video camera is recording. The VIRB Elite incorporates all these features, plus built-in WiFi, data sensors and a high-sensitivity GPS. Both the VIRB and the VIRB Elite feature ANT+ connectivity for remote control functionality with other Garmin products, and the VIRB Elite will support data transfer with other fitness sensors on top. For more information, contact Michelle Hohls of Garmin on 011 251 9964 or 072 247 3447.

DAIWA D-SHOCK COMBOS Daiwa have just released their new D-Shock combos. This range of Daiwa rod-andreel combos features a three-ball-bearing spinning reel and a fibreglass rod. There are four combos in the range: a 5’ 6” light, a 6’ medium light, a 6’ 6” medium and a 7’ medium, so there is a rod for any light tackle enthusiast. These are great beginner combos but, with the Daiwa backing, offer great value for what you are paying. The high-quality fibreglass rod is a 2-piece with a heavy duty screw winch fitting and tough aluminium oxide guides. The reel has a Digigear digital gear design and comes with an ABS machined aluminium spool and Twist Buster line twist reduction. Priced at under R320.00 for the 7’ combo, these are great value for money. Available from leading fishing tackle stores countrywide or at The KingFisher on 031 368 3903.

MAKO EYEWEAR IMMORTAL The new Immortal is a large-lensed bluemirror-glass model tailored for the harsh light levels experienced in surf fishing and, especially, deep-sea fishing. With a fully wrap-around frame to cut out sun from the sides and hinges moulded into the frame for extra durability, these are fantastic salt-water polorized sunglasses. This model has Mako’s patented HD technology, cutting out distorting light to enhance clarity. The lens being glass, with over 12 anti-reflective coatings, a hydrophobic outer coating and polarization, is one of the best lenses produced in the world. And Mako has introduced infrared technology; this reduces the heat transferred through the lens and into your eyes, keeping your eyes comfortable throughout the day. For more information, contact Lloyd Pereira of Must Fish on 083 453 8335 or

BERKLEY TRILENE BRAID This tournament level superline features an 8-carrier radial construction that stays round and casts further with no ‘buzz’ through the guides when casting. Manufactured from the highest grade Dyneema® with a special coating technology that ensures colour fastness for 51% longer than that of competitors, this is the strongest Berkley braid ever made. For more information, contact Morné Strydom of Pure Fishing SA on 011 023 5100.

34 | RSD JANUARY 2014

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By Dean Dickinson



PENN CONFLICT SPINNING REEL The Conflict’s striking cosmetics, durable design, and silky smooth drag are a few of the reasons why so many anglers fish with this reel. The Conflict’s full-metal body construction allows it to maintain precision gear alignment under severe punishment, while its Techno-Balanced™ rotor ensures a smooth retrieve. From tuna to grunter, the Conflict was designed to perform and engineered to last. For more information, contact Morné Strydom of Pure Fishing SA on 011 023 5100.

The Maria Duplex range of casting crank baits is manufactured by Maria in Japan and offers unbelievable colours in two weights: the 18g, with a total length of 65mm and the 31g, with a total length of 80mm. The Duplex offers the best of both worlds – it is short and compact, offering little or no wind resistance, allowing you to cast great distances. This perfectly balanced Japanese-manufactured product has an incredible action. Available from leading tackle stores nationwide. For more informaiton, contact The KingFisher on 031 368 3903.

DECOY The original Japanese-made Decoy JS-1 inline single hooks are now available in sizes 1/0 through to 8/0. The smaller sizes are often used to replace the hooks on lures like Onde Ondas, Laser Pro 120 and Sorcerer 90, whereas the larger-sized inline singles are ideal for stickbaits, Roosta poppers and jigs, as well as most trolling lures. Included in the Decoy range are the new heavy-duty split rings, available in sizes: #8 (150lb), #9 (200lb), #10 (250lb), #11 (300lb). These split rings are perfectly matched to the inline singles 4/0, 6/0, 7/0 and 8/0 respectively, but are also very effective on most other hooks. To suit the light tackle enthusiast, Decoy has a range of plugging singles. These inline single hooks, available in sizes 1/0, #1, #2 and #4, are ideal for replacing treble hooks on smaller lures, including bass lures. For more information, contact Cobus van Biljon or Brandon Zeeman of C1-D2 Tackle Traders (Halco) on 013 744 0196 or


ASARI SHOOTER METAL JIG The Shooter metal jig is available in 40g, 60g and 80g. When dropped in the water, the jig flutters and rocks from side to side and the bright finish flashes while it falls, making it look like an incapacitated bait fish as it drifts toward the bottom. The Shooter is available in three eye-catching colours, all with a VMC treble hook. Ask for it by name at your local retailer.

floatEyes was the innovator of the floating eyewear retainer in 1985, and continues to produce the highest quality in floating outdoor accessories. The driving force behind floatEyes has always been to suit the needs of active lifestyles with practical and innovative solutions. For over 25 years, floatEyes continues to be the leader in floating watersport accessories manufactured in the United States. Whether at the beach, on the water or in the blind, floatEyes makes a product that is a perfect fit for anyone. Their mission remains strong: to produce the highest quality in outdoor leisure accessories and to add comfort, security and convenience to people’s lives. It only takes losing something valuable in the water once to convince you to invest in a pair of floatEyes. For more information, contact Nikki Wedermann of Big Catch on 021 511 1914 or JANUARY 2014 RSD | 35

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Œ 


WIN BIG 1. Angler: Etienne Mc Geer Species: oxeye tarpon Location: Richards Bay Bait: Halco Roosta popper 60 Tackle: Loomis Trigya Pro rod, Shimano Sahara 2500 reel, 6lb FireLine Size:40cm to 50cm Weight: ±1kg Released? yes 2. Angler: Bradley Gouveris Species: smooth-hound Location: Brighton Pier (Port Elizabeth) Bait: shad head Tackle: Kingfisher Poseidon 5oz rod, Shimano TLD 20/40 reel, Perline .45mm line Weight: ±14kg Released? yes 3. Angler: Grayson Govender Species: dusky kob Location: Nhlabane Bait: bonito Tackle: Assasin HMG rod, Trinidad TN30 reel Size: 140cm Weight: 29.3kg Released?yes 4. Angler: Dale Gouveris Species: garrick Location: Cape St Francis Bait: live mullet Tackle: Blue Marlin G3 7oz rod, Shimano Torium 30 reel, Perline .50mm line Weight: 2.9kg Released? yes 5. Angler: Kevin Alfonso Species: white cracker Location: Cape Recife (Port Elizabeth) Bait: redbait Tackle: Enigma Rugged Oval rod, Awa-Shima Big Game 0.45 line, Torium 20 reel, 1/0 hook Size: 64cm Weight: 6kg Released? yes 6. Angler: Diendren Moodley Species: Natal stumpnose Location: Sheffield Beach Bait: mud prawn Tackle: custom-built 9’ rod, Daiwa Exceler reel, 30lb leader with braid backing Size: 56cm Weight: 3.5kg Released? yes 7. Angler: Dylan van Breda Species: Garrick Location: Kabeljauws surf Bait: 2oz Predator plug Tackle: 8’ Alcock custom-built rod, Shimano Stradic 5000 reel, 30lb braid Size: 73cm (fork length) Released? yes, tagged 8. Angler:Shaun Todman Species: GT Location: off the beach, Richards Bay Bait: live shad on slide Tackle: Penn 12' rod, Shimano reel, KingFisher 2516 line Size: 30kg Released? yes 9. Angler: Johan Greyling Species: black musselcracker Location: Kaysers Beach, East London Bait: sardine Elbe 12’ spinner rod, Daiwa Sweepfire 4000 reel, Daiwa 5.4kg line Size: 70cm Weight: 9.8kg Released? yes 6 | belly RSD Tackle: JANUARY 2014

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CATCH! Each month we will be rewarding one lucky person with tackle to the value of R1 800, proudly sponsored by The KingFisher.








The prize is the new Daiwa Exceler Elite two-piece spinning rod in your choice of the 10’6”, the 11’ or the 11’ 6”, valued at around R1 800! (Prize is not exchangeable for cash or different products, nor is transferable to another person.

To qualify, send your favourite catch pictures to: Please include the following information: • species • location bait • tackle • size • weight • contact details (business only) • released (yes/no)

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The smell of this bait will put most first-time anglers off fishing for life, but any self-respecting galjoen or musselcracker angler will never walk past this amazing rock bait. By Dean Dickinson THE BEST PIECES ARE the ones that have already come loose from the inside of the redbait pod and you can pour them out rather than have to remove them with your finger. I tend to prefer the slightly firmer pieces and leave a few of these riper pieces in the bucket to add the extra flavour needed when chasing galjoen. These are the pods that have washed up on the beach and have spent a few weeks rolling up and down the beach and ripening in the sun, leaving them a nice grey colour. For some reason, white steenbrass also enjoy a piece of rotten redbait when the water drops to around 12°C to 14°C; you can try some in the surf – the STEP‚



Pics: Daniel Dickinson


big steenbrass tend to enjoy it. I have only experienced this in cold water, though. Zebra and blacktail are also very fond of rotten redbait, and I have landed loads of black cracker in the winter months using it. I never freeze redbait as it doesn’t work nearly as well as the freshly ripened stuff – bites are very slow on redbait that has been frozen. Rather leave it in a bucket, even if it is there for a few weeks; it only gets better with age. You don’t become popular with the wife and kids during galjoen season though, something to do with the smell… ■

STEP1: When picking up redbait on the beach, make sure that the pods have started going grey in colour – this is a sign that they are ready. You can usually find loads on the beach after a rough sea. STEP2: Cut them open very carefully so you that don’t get sprayed with the fluid inside the pods; it’s not very pleasant smelling like redbait the whole day while fishing. STEP3: I prefer the semi-ripe dipped in the juice of the very ripe for smell and flavour. Start by cutting a nice thin strip of redbait that can be threaded onto the hook, then cotton a piece on the back of the hook for extra flavour .

STEP4: I use the bait with the inner flash facing outwards. Use some ghost cotton to keep it on the hook. Make sure to leave your hook exposed to improve your chances of setting the hook when the fish takes the bait. Once you have finished cottoning your bait on, place it in the juice from the older pods to add extra smell to the bait. JANUARY 2014 RSD | 39

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PREPARATION TIME Cooking time: 7 min Ready in: 15 min Recipe yields: 4 Portions

TIPskin S ’ EF ve the ily, useng he H C emo eas boili in t r h f el

INGREDIENTS • 1 eeltail barbel • 50ml vegetable oil • 100g flour (to dust the cutlets) • 1 tsp pink salt • 100g of oil and/or butter (to fry the fish) • A few grinds of black pepper to suit your taste – I use loads • Soy sauce for dipping – I use sweet soy, but any soy you prefer will do • 1 lemon (to squeeze over the fish before it is served)

METHOD • Remove the head of the barbel and pour the boiling water over the sides to help remove the skin. • If you prefer not to use boiling water, you can use a sharp knife to split the skin, then grip it from the head side and tear it off. • Once you have removed the skin, portion the barbel into equal-sized portions and lightly dust in flour. • Place oil and/or butter and garlic in a pan and gently fry the fish until it is cooked golden brown, making sure not to overcook it. •Remove the fish from the pan and place on paper towel to drain any excess oil.

To he e tle o e fis wly h of t ll ket ace t d slo er l u f a ter. P ink an g wat This l wa hen s boilin of it. o pee t t kitc r the h side skin o tha u po r eac e the fins s ved. o ove l caus the rem m ily l i o r w yf eas a aw an be it c



TO SERVE • Grind a few grinds of coarse salt and black pepper over the fish. • Add a squeeze of lemon. • Serve with some sweet soy sauce and crispy chips or savory rice.

I AM OFTEN ASKED if you can eat eeltail barbel, so I decided to do a simple recipe to answer the question. Eeltail barbel is a fantastic, underrated line fish, similar to kingklip – it has a firm white flesh with only a center bone. For this recipe, I have left the bone in the fish – once the flesh is cooked it can be peeled off the bone. There isn’t much flesh on a fish weighing less than a kilogram, but they are certainly worth the effort as, once they are cooked, they are such fantastic eating. ■ JANUARY 2014 RSD | 41

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The Big Catch Bronzie Festival will have you target one of the most challenging game fish that one can target from the shore. The Bronze Whaler Shark or Bronzies as they are more affectionately known amongst extreme sports fishermen, will test your physical endurance and fishing tackle to the max. On the 11 January 2014, the top shark fishermen from all around South Africa will be gathering to pit their skills against the formidable False Bay Bronzies in the Big Catch Bronzie Festival. South African Shark Conservancy will be in attendance to make sure all the Bronzies are tagged and released in the best manner possible. More information on the competition can

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