TROPICAL BARRA ESTUARIES

In the final episode of Series 3, Starlo and Jo again join Fish’s Fly & Sportfishing (www.weipaflyfish.com.au) in the rich waters around Weipa, this time pursuing the area’s most famous and sought-after species: the mighty barramundi. They cast their lures and baits amongst the mangrove roots of the tidal estuaries and find a good deal more on offer than barra.

RODS

While baitcaster or overhead gear is still popular in barra waters, light to medium spinning (threadline) tackle based on 2 to 2.5 metre Shimano spin rods is also well suited to casting lures or baits for barra and other tropical estuary sportfish.

REELS

Starlo and Jo use medium weight 2500 to 4000-size Shimano spinning reels from the well-priced Stradic and Navi ranges

LINE

Thin, strong braided main lines cast extra well and cut through the water efficiently. Starlo and Jo typically choose PowerPro in 15 to 30 pound breaking strains for this style of fishing and always knot a rod-length or so of 30 to 60 pound Ocea fluorocarbon to the end of the main line… Barra are tough on leaders!

TERMINAL TACKLE

A range of Squidgies and various floating/diving hard bodied lures work well on barra and other tropical estuary dwellers, and Jo also sneaks a little bait fishing into this final segment of the series!


SHARE THIS POST


© 2020 Offroad Adventure Show. All Rights Reserved.

WEIPA INSHORE SPORTFISHING

Starlo and Jo hooked up with Fish’s Fly & Sportfishing (www.weipaflyfish.com.au) guiding operation in Weipa, chasing a variety of exciting inshore species in the shallow, clear waters of the Gulf of Carpentaria. In this episode they kick off casting lures from the sandy beaches for queenfish, “blue bastards” (sweetlips) and other line burners, before heading out in the boat to mix it with some muscular cobia or black kingfish.

 

RODS

Light to medium spinning (threadline) tackle based on 2 to 2.5 metre Shimano spin rods is ideal for casting lures at tropical fish cruising the beaches and flats.

REELS

Starlo and Jo chose medium weight 2500 to 4000-size Shimano spinning reels from the company’s Stradic and Navi ranges.

LINE

Fine, strong braided main lines work extra well, and both Starlo and Jo prefer PowerPro in 10, 15 and 20 pound breaking strains for this style of fishing. They always attach a rod-length leader of 25 to 50 pound Ocea fluorocarbon to the working end of the line, remembering that lots of northern species have sharp teeth or gill covers!

TERMINAL TACKLE

A range of Squidgies soft plastics and Squidgies jig heads, metal slices such as Raiders, small poppers and various floating/diving hard bodied lures get the job done beautifully. Quality polarised sunglasses are also essential tools. Steve and Jo wear Mako Eyewear exclusively and swear by these premium sunnies.


SHARE THIS POST


LAKE BURRENDONG, NSW

Burrendong Dam near Dubbo, in central western NSW, provides an excellent “mixed” fishery for native species (primarily golden perch or yellowbelly and Murray cod), which are found right alongside two less desirable but nonetheless fun-to-catch introduced invaders: redfin perch and common carp. In this episode, Starlo successfully targets yellowbelly, redfin and carp using various lures and also on his fly fishing tackle.

RODS

Light spinning (threadline) tackle based on 2 to 2.5 metre Shimano spin rods is a perfect choice when working artificial lures for golden perch and redfin. On the carp, Starlo opted for a 9-foot, 6-weight, trout-style fly outfit based on a brilliant G. Loomis NRX rod.

REELS

Featherweight 1000-size Shimano spinning reels were matched to the light spin rods, while Starlo used an old Shimano fly reel for his carp hunting.

LINE

Fine, strong braided main lines work well in this role, and Starlo prefers PowerPro in 3, 5 and 8 pound breaking strains for the task, with an 8 or 10 pound leader consisting of several metres of Ocea fluorocarbon. He used a weight-forward (WF6F) floating fly line with a 3 to 4 metre tapered leader attached on his fly gear.

TERMINAL TACKLE

Various metal vibes or blades are extremely effective on yellowbelly and redfin perch in this scenario, while weighted nymph flies are deadly on carp. Starlo swear by his Mako Eyewear sunglasses and especially loves them when “sight-fishing” for those pesky carp!


SHARE THIS POST


FLATHEAD ON SOFT PLASTICS

Catching flathead on soft plastic lures must be one of Australia’s favourite (and most effective) forms of fishing, and there’s absolutely no doubt that the Squidgies range of soft plastics and jig heads created by Starlo and his mate Bushy — all specifically designed for Aussie fish — have absolutely revolutionised flathead fishing around the country! In this episode, Starlo visits St Georges Basin, south of Sydney, and reveals the basics of catching a feed of flatties on his ever-reliable Squidgies.

RODS

Starlo’s favourite rods for chucking Squidgies at flathead are generally 2 to 2.2 metres in length with relatively light tips and somewhat stiffer butts. He particularly likes the Shimano Zodias, Anarchy and Maikuro ranges.

REELS

Reliable, high-quality spinning reels in the 2500 and 3000 sizes are best for this style of big water flathead spinning. It’s hard to beat Shimano’s Stradic and Navi ranges, particularly in terms of value for money.

LINE

In this episode, Starlo ran 8 and 10 pound PowerPro braid as his main line, with longish (one to three rod length) leaders of Shimano Ocea fluorocarbon in 10 and 12 pound strengths, connected to the braid via a neat Double Uni or FG knot.

TERMINAL TACKLE

Squidgies Fish, Shad Pro Prawn and Whip Bait soft plastics are all proven flathead killers, but don’t ignore the more subtle action of Wrigglers and Bugs, either… They all work! Squidgies jig heads ranging from 5 to 14 grams in weight with hook sizes from 1/0 to 4/0 are the perfect “delivery vehicles” for these deadly plastics.


SHARE THIS POST


OFFSHORE BOTTOM BOUNCING

Drifting over offshore reefs and gravel patches while bait fishing using paternosters or dropper rigs weighted with fairly heavy sinkers is a great way to catch a feed of snapper, morwong, flathead and various other species. This sort of “bottom bouncing” action is available right around the country, with the mix of targets on offer varying from place to place.

 

RODS

Rods for bottom fishing are generally quite short and stiff, although Starlo prefers a slightly longer rod (around 2 metres) with some tip flex. He always chooses Shimano rods.

REELS

Both spinning and overhead reels work well in this role, but Starlo loves his Shimano Talica lever-drag overhead for the job.

LINE

PowerPro raided lines in the 20 to 30 pound range works well, but always add a rod length or two of clear monofilament as a wind-on leader. Starlo prefers Shimano Ocea fluorocarbon leader material and used 20 and 30 pound Ocea in this segment.

TERMINAL TACKLE

A ranger of snapper lead style sinkers from 90 to about 400 grams, some three-way swivels and a selection of Octopus or Suicide-style hooks from 3/0 to 6/0 cover most of your offshore bottom bouncing needs


SHARE THIS POST


TROPICAL BEACHES

Walking the beaches of northern Australia with a rod in hand can be extremely rewarding, although anglers need to be aware of the potential threats posed by saltwater crocodiles and stinging sea wasp jellyfish: stay out of the water! The greatest thrill involved in this style of angling is what’s referred to as “sight fishing”: seeing your target first before casting a lure or fly to it. In Starlo’s book, fishing doesn’t get much better than this!

RODS

Light spinning (threadline) tackle based on 2 to 2.5 metre rods is great for casting lures at tropical fish cruising the beaches and flats, but using fly casting gear takes the challenge to a whole new level. An 8 or 9 weight fly outfit is perfect. Starlo chooses Shimano spin rods and G.Loomis fly rods.

REELS

Medium weight 2500 to 4000-size Shimano spinning reels fit the bill. Starlo and Jo used Shimano Stradic and Navi reels.

LINE

Fine, strong braided main lines work a treat, and Starlo prefers PowerPro in 10, 15 and 20 pound breaking strains for this task, with a 25 to 50 pound leader of Ocea fluorocarbon. Remember, lots of northern species have teeth!

TERMINAL TACKLE

range of Squidgies soft plastics and Squidgies jig heads and some metal slices such as Raiders cover the bases well for lure fishing, while smallish baitfish, shrimp and crab-pattern flies also work a treat. Quality polarised sunglasses are also essential for this caper. Steve and Jo wear Mako Eyewear exclusively and swear by their glasses.


SHARE THIS POST


SYDNEY HARBOUR

Sydney’s beautiful and iconic Harbour is fishing better today than at any time in living memory! Cleaner water and restrictions on commercial harvesting of fish have led to a massive rebound in stocks. Starlo and Jo head out with the MAKO Eyewear crew in this episode to chase abundant schools of Australian salmon and silver trevally against the beautiful backdrop of the world’s best harbour.

RODS

In this episode Starlo and Jo use 2 to 2.4 m light and medium spinning rods from several Shimano stables, including the ever popular Jungle StiX range.

REELS

Premium spinning reels in the 2500 and 4000 sizes are best for this task and it’s hard to top Shimano’s Rarenium, Stradic and Navi ranges, especially in terms of bang for your buck.

LINE

In this episode, Starlo and Jo mostly ran 10 pound PowerPro braid, but Starlo also broke out the ultra-light 3 pound PowerPro Bite Motion braid for some added excitement. The duo used leaders of Shimano Ocea fluorocarbon in 10, 12 and 16 pound strengths.

TERMINAL TACKLE

Squidgies Fish, Shad and Whip Bait soft plastics, Raider metal jigs and various metal slugs and baitfish profile lures all work well on salmon and other pelagic species.


SHARE THIS POST


BEACH AND ROCK BASICS

Shore-based fishing from our beaches and rocky headlands is incredibly popular and also readily accessible to a large portion of the country’s population, even close to our major cities. In this episode, Starlo shows how easy it is to target some wonderful, hard-fighting southern species from the shore, including Australian salmon and black drummer. His underlying message is simple: the lighter you fish, the more you’ll catch!

RODS

Longer rods are not only effective for shore fishing — allowing you to cast further and hold your line clear of the waves — they also allow you to keep back from the water’s edge. Starlo chooses the Light Surf models from several Shimano ranges. These measure between 3 and 3.4 m in length but are very light.

REELS

Shimano make an excellent range of quality spinning reels at various price points. Starlo likes the Stradic and Navi line-ups

LINE

PowerPro raided lines in the 8 to 15 pound range are ideal for light beach and rock fishing, but always add a rod length of clear monofilament as a leader. Starlo chooses Shimano Ocea fluorocarbon leader material.

TERMINAL TACKLE

You’ll need a selection of hooks in the No. 4 to 4/0 size range, some ball, bean or bug sinkers from 00 to about No. 2 sizes and a few small swivels.


SHARE THIS POST


SOUTH COAST ESTUARY: SALT TO FRESH

Each autumn and early winter, tens of thousands of brown trout run up the feeder streams pouring into massive Lake Eucumbene, in the Snowy Mountains Region of southern NSW. These trout are on their way to gravel spawning beds higher up the rivers to drop their eggs. One of the most effective ways to target them is to cast trout egg and nymph imitating flies off ultra-light spinning gear or fly tackle. Starlo joins his good friend Matt Tripet of The Fly Program to chase a few of these fat, fit brownies on a frosty May morning.

 

RODS

Light, sensitive spinning (threadline) tackle is perfect for most southern estuary fishing, while baitcasters are still a favourite tool for many keen bass fishers. Starlo chooses Shimano Anarchy, Zodias and Jungle StiX rods.

REELS

Lightweight 1000-size Shimano spinning reels are ideal for light lure fishing, and Starlo used a Caenan baitcaster on the bass.

LINE

Starlo prefers fine, strong braided lines. He chose 3 pound and 10 pound PowerPro Bite Motion braid with 4, 6 and 16 pound Shimano Ocean leaders

TERMINAL TACKLE

Starlo used Squidgies Wriggler and Whip Bait soft plastics and various spinnerbaits in this episode.


SHARE THIS POST


SPAWN-RUN EUCUMBENE TROUT

Each autumn and early winter, tens of thousands of brown trout run up the feeder streams pouring into massive Lake Eucumbene, in the Snowy Mountains Region of southern NSW. These trout are on their way to gravel spawning beds higher up the rivers to drop their eggs. One of the most effective ways to target them is to cast trout egg and nymph imitating flies off ultra-light spinning gear or fly tackle. Starlo joins his good friend Matt Tripet of The Fly Program to chase a few of these fat, fit brownies on a frosty May morning.

RODS

It’s important to use ultra-light, super-sensitive spinning rods when casting
lightly-weighted flies for
trout. Steve chooses the superb Anarchy and Zodias ranges from Shimano.

REELS

Quality spinning reels in the smallest (1000) sizes are best for this task and it’s hard
to top Shimano’s
Rarenium and Stradic ranges, especially in terms of bang for your buck.

LINE

For this episode, Starlo ran 3 pound PowerPro Bite Motion braid and relatively long
leaders (at least two rod lengths) of 4 and 6 pound Shimano Ocea fluorocarbon.

TERMINAL TACKLE

A selection of weighted and un-weighted Glo Bugs (egg patterns) and nymphs, along with
some split shot for weight, are all you really need, but carry a few hard-bodied lures
as well.


SHARE THIS POST