Tyrone’s Jewfish Jigging Secrets
- It’s important to locate fish holding structure and stay close to it, rather than drifting aimlessly over barren bottom. Dhufish tend to cling closely to a piece of structure and don’t stray too far away from a lump of rock. The key can be to find structure that’s holding bait, so your sounder is vital.
- Dhufish move into shallower water (~30-50m, sometimes shallower) during the winter months and deeper (~100m) in the summer months. They don’t tend to stray too much deeper. At times they’ll move into weedbeds to feed on squid.
- For some reason, northerly winds seem to shut down the dhufish bite. A south westerly wind of 8-12 knots with no swell helps get enough drift happening and enough cover for the fish without getting too rough and uncomfortable for the angler.
- The currents on the west coast tend not to be as strong as those on the east coast. Fishing is best when the current is low because it’s important to fish vertical when you’re slow jigging. But if there is a bit of current the dhufish will usually be behind the structure out of the current, or in caves within the structure.
- Setting up a good drift is vital, getting your boat moving past the structure and allowing the lure to waft nicely below the boat.
- “Two tide” days seem to fish a bit slower than regular tides.
- If you have the right tackle then working a slow pitch jig becomes easy because you simply keep the rod still and use the reel to impart action to the lure. Quality slow pitch jigs tend to stay horizontal when hung vertically beneath the boat, and when the reel handle is cranked the rod loads up and makes the lure jump to life.
- Slow pitch jigs are finely balanced to stay horizontal when fished vertically (if that makes sense), so it’s critical to put hooks on both the top and bottom so as not to unbalance the lure.
Tyrone’s Slow Pitch Jigging Tackle
- Slow pitch jigging can only be done using overhead gear because you can’t pump and wind the rod – and it’s very difficult to fight a fish on spin outfit without pumping and winding.
- A high-profile, high-gear overhead reel such as a 1500-2000 size Shimano Ocea Jigger is an ideal slow pitch reel. This is loaded with PE2 to 2.5 line because the thin profile allows the lure to stay more vertical and be influenced less by currents or boat drag on the line. This is finished with a length of 40-50lb fluorocarbon leader.
- Slow pitch rods are specifically designed to work the jig – you can get away with a standard jigging rod at a pinch, but to work lures properly it’s critical to use the right slow pitch style rod. Slow pitch rods have a number that matches the jig, rather than a line rating, since slow pitch is done almost exclusively on PE 2 – 2.5 line. For example a rod with a pitch rating Deep Liner #3 would pitch 200-350g jigs.
Tyrone’s Slow Pitch Jigging Tackle
- A Seafloor Control Rector or Deepliner VB are “falling leaf” style actions that are great when the current is slow and the fish are a little shy. Don’t worry about the weight of the jig, as long as it’s enough weight to keep the lure vertical.
- The Deepliner Spye 5 are a longer, thinner jig that’s flat on the bottom and is perfect when there’s a bit of current running. With weights up to 1kg, these can be used in some seriously deep water or stronger current.
- Oceans Legacy Contact Hybrid is a very versatile lure that is also quite cost effective. As the name would suggest, it’s a tear-drop shaped lure that has an action somewhere between that of the previous two lures.
- Gold, pink and blue are Tyrone’s go to jig colours, but a lot of people also like white.
Tackle HQ is the Perth tackle store that Tyrone is a co-owner of and in which he has worked for the past nine years. Whilst they have a wide range of tackle, TackleHQ specialises in jigging and topwater fishing and is the perfect place to start your slow pitch jigging journey, no matter where in Australia you are or what species you’re targeting.