It’s time for gar­rick, kob and stump­ies

The Mercury - - SPORT - The King­fisher

MACK­EREL! This has been the only bait that the late-sea­son sum­mer fish have con­sid­ered eat­ing over the last week. Guys have been throw­ing freshly-caught red­eye sar­dine into the same ar­eas but the mack­erel baits have been get­ting the pulls. This may be due to the spe­cific smell or the slightly hardier bait that re­mains in­tact even when the peck­ers are around. Un­for­tu­nately, the sum­mer fish are few and far be­tween. This means pack­ing away the big sticks for the medium to light gear. It also means gar­rick, kob, brusher, stump­ies and a whole host of other edi­ble fish. So, this cloud def­i­nitely has a silver lin­ing! The North Coast news has come from the scratch­ing boys in the Cape Vi­dal-Maphe­lane area. The bait of choice has been chokka. Dou­ble hook traces and cir­cle hooks is the way to go when fish­ing in these ar­eas as it will re­duce the amount of time you spend stuck in the rocks, and the fish you hook you will land. The cen­tral zone has been dom­i­nated by a few ined­i­ble species along the beach­front while the piers, Blue La­goon and Umh­langa are throw­ing some nice edi­ble fish. The ined­i­bles com­ing out are di­a­monds and grey sharks which have both been favour­ing mack­erel baits. The edi­ble species have been shad, pom­pano and stump­nose which have been feed­ing very well on cracker shrimp and pink prawns. A stan­dard trace with a 4/0 Mus­tad Ringer Soi hook will be the way to go for both of these species. The gar­rick have started to come on the bite es­pe­cially at Winkel­spruit. Live shad have been the bait of choice for these preda­tors but re­mem­ber that they have to be le­gal size to be used. Make use of a slide clip and ei­ther 1 or two 6/0 hooks. The ined­i­ble species com­ing out have been some late-sea­son sandies and di­a­monds. There have also been some good fish hooked and lost. These were likely black­fin sharks. As men­tioned above, mack­erel have been the choice bait for these fish. One of the most over­looked as­pects of plan­ning a fish­ing trip is the pack­ing of enough food and wa­ter. It is es­sen­tial to pack enough wa­ter to keep your­self hy­drated. Note that it says wa­ter and not al­co­hol. Al­co­hol only de­hy­drates you, so it is not a good idea for a fish­ing trip, not to men­tion be­ing dan­ger­ous. Try­ing to walk on the rocks af­ter one, two beers is go­ing to end in dis­as­ter. Even though we are mov­ing into a colder time of the year, hy­dra­tion is still as im­por­tant as it is in the height of sum­mer chasing di­a­monds. Make sure to pack at least 1L of wa­ter in your bag. So, his­tory was made this past week­end! A very well done to Mike Wheeler who is the first kayak fish­er­man to be crowned “King of the Sea”. He won this ti­tle by land­ing a 32.35kg couta dur­ing the Saf­fire King Of The Sea Com­pe­ti­tion last week­end at Pu­mula which saw ski boat, jet ski and kayak fish­er­men pit­ting their skills against each other. A re­minder that the Umh­langa Ski Boat Com­pe­ti­tion is also near­ing and the ex­cite­ment is be­gin­ning to build. This is an­other com­pe­ti­tion that sees ski boats, jet skis and pad­dle skis pit­ted against each other. The south zone of KZN saw the King Of The Sea Com­pe­ti­tion held last week­end and there were plenty of de­cent fish caught in all the dif­fer­ent facets. Best of the catches and King Of The Sea was a kayak fish­er­man that weighed in a mon­ster of a couta. In other news, the south zone launch sites saw some de­cent tuna com­ing out and a proper-size prodi­gal son was landed by a fe­male an­gler (fish­er­woman?) launch­ing out of Umko­maas. Well done Sarahlee on show­ing the boys how it’s done (#Gir­lPower). Also in this area, there have been some mas­sive wa­hoo seen off Ali­wal. These mon­strous fish re­quire stout tackle and heavy wire to land. Tight lines and scream­ing reels.

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