CUT BAITS FOR LEDGER RIGS
Application Any snapper-fishing situation but particularly well suited to deeper water - 50-metres plus – and areas of high current.
1 x fresh or frozen skipjack tuna
2 x hooks – sized to match the width of the pilchard (6/0 usually a good choice)
6 – 8 foot trace – 60 to 80-lb stiff trace
Sinkers sized to match the fishing circumstances A
Scissors or clippers to trim trace
Step one Prepare a ledger rig using stiffer trace than normal. Stiff trace helps prevent the hooks from tangling around the main line.
Step two Cut two angled wedges of skipjack tuna, as demonstrated.
Step three Trim any excess flesh from the pieces. The purpose is to ensure the bait size is well matched to the hook’s gape.
Step four Pass the first hook all the way through a bait - start on the flesh side and pull the hook and its eye completely clear of bait on the skin side.
Step five Push the point of the hook back through the bait so that the hook sits neatly against the skin side with the hook point and barb exposed on the flesh side of the bait.
Step six Repeat the process with the second hook and the other bait. The final result should like the image hereabouts.
Step seven Add the correct weight sinker to the bottom and of the ledger and you are ready to catch fish.
NOTE The skipjack ledger rig is arguably the most versatile setup in any fisherman’s arsenal. It is easily downsized to target terakihi or upsized for hapuka and bluenose.