Moving from a powerboat to a Hobie requires a shift in thinking. Storage, range, speed and space immediately spring to mind. Now don’t get me wrong, I honestly believe that fishing from the Hobie has improved my ability to fish and I reckon it’s fair to say that the lureandfly.com team are in the same position.
The SSBS Round on the Georges River was an example of things not completely going to plan. Although the end certainly justified the means, it was a day that for the most, was frustrating. The wind was supposed to roar through from the start of the day but it was calm, making the fishing conditions less than ideal but once the wind picked up, the challenges continued as the entire field was blown around by the wind.
The day started for me with a set of boats that ended up being very popular. Now in the Hobies, its not as easy as turning the steering wheel and hooting with foot flat to the floor to the next spot if an area is too crowded. With some words from Josh ringing in my ears, I proceeded to fish “dirty” water that other kayakers and boats had, in some cases, just fished.
Fishing a set of moored boats immediately after other competitor’s had fished them may not seem like a tournament winning tactic but Josh and I realised that we could utilise techniques that we had refined and proven to be successful when others were using alternate techniques. I could see that other anglers were using a soft plastic presentation so I opted for my trusted crank bait with the belief that the technique would allow me to fish faster and more effectively target active fish, aiming for a reaction bite.
With no wind, no cloud cover and pressure from other anglers, I made an immediate change in lures to a smaller profiled, Daiwa Yogiri. This small lure allowed me to downsize the profile of the lure and had immediate effect, with a string of undersized fish showing interest in my lure. In the Hobie, with limited space and storage, lure changes require more thought, less hesitation and faster changes to reduce the chance of lost fishing time and opportunities.
Cranking the boats is nothing new but something I have noticed this summer has been the ability to catch multiple fish on particular boat hulls. I was able to pull multiple fish from the same boat and often not off the hulls I would expect. Fish were coming off boats with minimal growth and would produce on consecutive casts.
This motivated me to continue fishing through the boats, I was aware that not all of the boats would hold fish but at least some would, I just needed to search through and find the ones that did.
With the wind up, I really needed to slow my fishing down, the wind was now howling through, narrowing the opportunities to cast, while timing the cast and positioning the Hobie was imperative for getting the bites. Casting my lure under the mooring line of boat hulls and retrieving the lure back directly under the hull towards the stern would often result in a small bump and just the slightest bit of resistance. My approach for cranking boat hulls on spinning fluorocarbon is definitely a “softly, softly” approach. I believe that, in some cases, fish don’t realise they are hooked until the angler applies extra pressure. My preferred technique is to paddle or motor into open water and generally position myself perpendicular to the hull itself.
This is where regular actioned rods and spinning fluorocarbon are hugely important. These two factors provide a softening buffer but most importantly, even pressure on the fish and the small trebles, something that braid and fast actioned rods don’t afford and can result in pulling hooks.
With another $200 heading to the Cancer Council, the result over the weekend caps off an amazing January for lureandfly.com. These donations wouldn’t be possible without the support of Steve from Hobie and Brad from Daiwa.