Wednesday 16 JANUARY 2013

Tackle specials and angling politics

from Downrigger Shop

G’day lads,

I was away all weekend at the Elvis Festival but it was a big weekend, off Sydney. Andrew from Warringah Anglers Club writes:



Andrew, thought you would like this one for your report … this was caught by Ivan Covic on the 12th at Longy.


Beautiful. Big head thin body, I’m guessing he rode the currents down Andrew?

 Peter CC caught this monster at Long Reef on Saturday too:

Pete writes:


1126mm or 1127mm – call it 1126.5mm– Andy as you know every mm is sacred and every mm is good especially when it is king fish. Mate I think pretty soon you will need a range of DR shop brag mats that go over 120cm.


It was absolute mayhem boating this fish... There were tangles, tears, crew climbing out of the boat and over the motor... The best kind of chaos...


Woo! Mike S was up there too, no pics available but he makes an important point about abuse of the fishery:


Caught 4 kingies within one hour however all undersize (all around 60 cm). Despite their size they still put up a good fight however I was rather geared up for a meter+ fish. Released all so they can be caught again next season when they are one meter +... Few d**heads out there taking undersized fish mate!


Lads, If you see anyone keeping undersized fish, or even needlessly knocking fish around at Long Reef (or anywhere else), take a pic and send it to me? I will delete your details and put it up in our weekly shame file. We can’t criticise the pros and the greenies unless we first do the right thing ourselves. Chris S fished inside

It’s always good seeing the smile on people’s faces when you put them onto kingies for the first time. We took one of my friends out for a kingie session and put him onto a heap of kingies (most were rats with 4 keepers)….  all fish were caught in Pittwater on the usual wrecks.



Very nice indeed Chris and mucho gracias, for writing

Ryan was inside Pittwater too:


Here is a photo of a fat 90cm kingy I pulled from Broken Bay on Saturday. Caught him on a Shimano Ci4 4000 with 40lb, almost got spooled.


Damn! This is so exciting, what’s happening in Sydney right now.

A late report from Tim Raptis was worth waiting for:


Around 7am we went outside the heads, I set up 1 rod with a live yellowtail and let it out while we where bottom fishing. After about 2 hours my reel goes off, both my dad and I looked at each other wondering what’s going on, I grab the rod and started bringing it in.



We knew it was a Kingfish but did not expect it to be as big as it was, After about 30min and around 7 runs I got it to the side of the boat and  saw the size 1.2m (not sure of weight). We struggled to lift it into the boat, once we got it into the boat we called it a day. We where back home by 10am with our catch. So far this is the biggest Kingfish I have gotten into our boat.


That is MASSIVE. Well done Tim, the best I have heard of this year. Let’s face it, why would you be fishing for anything else?

Jay stopped by for a downrigger last week, and didn’t waste any time getting into the action:

He also had an inquiry about kingfish rods:


I bought a rod and reel a few months back for trolling live baits and occasional jigging. The reel is a Daiwa Exceller 6500DA loaded with 50 pound braid and the rod is a Live Fibre Jig spin 5f8 rated at 50-80 pound. Now I am really happy with the reel but find the rod to be too stiff and heavy for the fishing I am doing in around the Harbour and just out past the heads. Also for the size fish that I have been catching it is just overkill and more like a broom stick bringing them in.


Can you match my reel up with nice suited rod for trolling live baits in the downrigger I purchased and also would be ok for some light jigging. If you can let me know what the cost would be that would be great.


You have come to the right place my friend, because I’m endlessly shocked at the broomsticks blokes bring on the Carolyn Jane when I say, ‘bring your favourite kingie outfit.’ Stump pullers, that would be more suited for levering a Land Cruiser out of a swamp. Sticks that have no flexibility whatsoever, until the kingfish reaches 15 kilos.

We have a beauty in stock at the moment that would do the job nicely, a two piece butt joined Korean jigging rod. 6 feet long with Fuji guides and reel seat, beautiful parabolic action that soaks up the tail beats, with a slightly oversized foregrip which brings the reel right back where you want it, for balance.


$160 and worth every cent, being a two piece it can be mailed too


As mentioned I was out at the Parkes Elvis Festival with the womenfolk this weekend, and we all had a ball:

But I managed to score a quick sesh offshore on Thursday, just before we left. Some good intel received that - no matter what- we had to be fishing at our preferred spot right on the top of the tide, which was 7.30AM. By 6.30AM we had a tank full of large live slimys and were ready to start downrigging, at outer North Head. At 7.15am we had a triple hook up, being one on each downrigger and the third on Mick’s home made soft plastic:

The SP had taken the king below, while a livebait had scored the 70cm bonito shown above.

We were on the scoreboard. We downrigged around outer North Head hoping for a big one but marked very little. So it was lines in and up to Long Reef, in a sloppy sea. Once there we hooked up regularly and were quickly down to just one live bait left.

A couple of small sharks were seen and they gave us some trouble, both biting off and shredding live baits:

Mick kept his eye out for shows on the sounder:

and when that was seen, dropped a jig down, which worked well:

Most of the fish caught were undersized, but we managed some legals for the table. Good friend Mev was having some outboard trouble and called me up on the mobile. So back inside the Harbour we went, to tow him to the ramp:

By way of thanks he told us surface fish were working in Rose Bay, so off we went with the light gear. The metals weren’t delivering so I rigged up a Bing on a paternoster. That worked:

Dean sent in some nice feedback on our light combo, shown in action above:


Andy and Tim, love the new light spin combo you sent me, can’t believe how light it is and the quality is superb. Will def get a couple more, exceptional value.


Glad you’re pleased with it, Dean! Still $95 for rod reel and line, plus we can mail that one anywhere in Australia quite cheaply.

You can have the best rod and reel on the job but my clumsy attempt to get one fish in quickly by tightening the drag meant a straightened hook:



Thanks to John and Mick for being such great company on the boat and looking forward to doing it again soon.

To FNQ, and Dan G sent some killer pics of a top jigging session off Cairns:

This time of year always sees some of the rarer catches falling to jigs and this trip was no different. It was strange that the red-emperor on two of my 30m tall pinnacles had been replaced with mangrove jack but nobody complained. Only thing was that the jacks will not fall to a jig so we had to spin up some skip jack tuna for bait. Around lunch we had an insane session on Cobia & must have got about 10 to the boat then we shifted off to chase some trout.

Justin nabbed a load of trout on his 4lb gear & then got the Maori Wrasse of a lifetime on the silly string too. Dylan followed with another Maori Wrasse & I got a ripper coronation trout.


Spent the day sending down 80 - 140g jigs into 65m  then went out & dropped bigger 250g's into the deep. Apart from the jacks out deep we couldn't stop the fish.

Talking about up north, John Charlton sent in a great charter offer, for our readers:



Hi Andrew, if you have an opportunity to pass on our Summer Special please do. Cheers

John Cape York Adventures

PH 07 4069 3302


Thanks, John!


Some of our readers have been fishing the fresh, as you’d expect at this time of year. Allison writes:



Hi guys Allison here just ordered some of your carbontex material and my partner cant wait for it to arrive. I thought u might like his latest catch from his kayak up the Brissy River. Armed with a 2-3kg overhead and two spinnerbaits and expecting a bass or two he set of at 2:30 AM only to ring me at 7 screaming at me down the phone. It wasn't until I saw a picture that I realised he was carrying on about. Thanks guys can’t wait to punish the new drags


Wow! Cod looks super fit and healthy, too. Congrats to Michael and thanks for sending too, Allison.

Grant’s been scouting out deer country for the upcoming season and of course, took some tackle:

Hey mate just thought I’d send you in a few pics from a recent trip freshwater fishing



Very glad you did ol’ buddy because the yellow and the red are spectacular.

To politics, and first up some good news for anyone who thinks fishing is cruel. A definitive UK study has found fish don’t feel pain:



That’s very good news. Steve L from Shooters & Fishers Party has an important request I’m hoping our WA readers can help with:


I'm hoping you may be able to help... as you know WA goes to the polls on March 6.  I am currently working with Rick Mazza (Chair, SFP WA Branch) to develop campaign materials but need WA fishing photos to use in the materials. Do you know of anyone in WA who could send us photos that we could use??


Lads, can anyone spare a pic or two? No one fights harder for fishos’ rights than SFP. If you can help out, email one or two to me for a good cause. Lots of feedback about the fish kill at Tallow Creek near Byron Bay, Norm’s being fairly typical:


Hi Andrew as a mostly catch and release angler, fish kills like that make me feel sick. I just don't understand how these ***** get it so wrong. I never understand why they don’t keep these little nurseries open to the sea. When I was a kid Narrabeen Lake was always open and it was just the best place to play and fish in the channel. Let the waters run I say. Have a great day mate thanks for the report.


One hundred percent in agreement, Norm. And I’m guessing we’d be pretty much on the same wavelength on the topic of Laggers Point boat ramp, at South West Rocks. It’s the only safe alternative to the dangerous Macleay River bar but unfortunately, it’s controlled by the National Parks and Wildlife Service. Not the typical friendly ranger you might meet in your local NP, but the hardcore green nasty at their Hurstville head office:

Can you imagine what a goldmine it is, being the boomgate supplier to NSW Parks?


The answer’s obvious: open Laggers Point at 8:30AM, when the campers are awake. Or, move the camping area away from the boat ramp. The park’s huge:

Les writes:


Well, once again it seems we are confronted by complete and utter garbage coming out of the mouths of people who know absolutely nothing about South West Rocks. Alan Jefferies says (above); "Last Easter there were not about 30 vehicles with boats lined up at 5.00am waiting to use the boat-ramp". In actual fact, last Easter the boat-ramp was 'CLOSED' so no-one could line up or use it at all. There were signs up and down the road. I was here, I live here at South West Rocks...Alan Jeffery doesn't, and he wasn't here last Easter so what's he talking about?


The campers and children shouldn't be on or near the boat-ramp. How many other camping grounds do you go to where campers and children are playing on the boat-ramp...none, because it's plain stupid and dangerous. It's the same as saying the highway should be closed to traffic because the kids are playing cricket on it; get the kids off the highway and let them play in the park; it's not rocket science. The campers have 2 kilometres of beautiful white sandy beach to play on, why sit on a concrete boat-ramp with boat trailers backing over the top of you? It's stupid.


          The noise generated is nothing more than some boats starting their motors  and idling off for a day’s fishing

          and then they return at about 1/2/3.00pm when everyone else is having a bbq and finishing off with a few

               beers. It doesn't matter. If they have an issue with noise at a boat-ramp then why put their tents up right

               beside a boat ramp in the first place? The camping grounds cover about 15 acres so if they want total silence

               then why not set up camp at the other end of the grounds and allocate the boat-ramp end of the grounds to

               the rec-fishing campers who do have boats. Problem solved.


All good Les excepting they don’t want to solve the problem. Like at Roseville, they *are* the problem. Which is why I was so glad to receive this email from Dave Anderson:


I remember it well Dave and great to hear from you again. Lads, click the link above and check it out? This kind of protest action could be just what we need to get some commonsense back into boat ramp management, around the country. Until next week my friends and as always, thanks so much to our readers and contributors. It’s your pics and reports and reports that make this little newsletter worth reading. Cheers,


 Andrew Hestelow