Fishing Publisher And Kayak Angler
Rob is a familiar face in the kayak fishing world, being a former editor of AFN’s Yakfisher magazine and heavily involved behind the scenes in the fishing publishing industry for many years. Rob is a keen kayak angler and has a reputation for harassing the kings on Portland’s inshore reef systems
Rob’s Top Tips For Portland Kingfish
- Kayak anglers at at the mercy of the weather more so than boat anglers, so let the weather dictate whether or you you venture out. For offhore kayak fishing in Victoria you’ll need a yak of 5m and the me safety gear as any other boat. Practice righting upturned kayak and climbing back aboard before venturing offshore.
- Kingfish don’t feel threatened by a kayak, so you’ll often be sight fishing to them. When one fish is hooked others will often mill around, so your kayak fishing buddies can usually get hooked up by casting near your hooked fish.
- It’s not possible for an angler to exert the same pressure on a hooked kingfish from a kayak compared with a boat. Rob finds most of his fish are hooked around the fringes of the reef and will tow him around until they tire. Because they aren’t put under s much pressure, kayak kingfish tend to be more relaxed when hooked.
- The best months for Portland kingfish are January and February, mainly because these months provide the warm, clear sunny days that make yak fishing for kings easier. Rob finds the fishing is best on an incoming tide. A fast rising barometer often brings on a hot bite, but look out for unstable weather afterwards.
- Make sure your gear is well looked after, these are unforgiving fish that will test your tackle and find any chinks in your armour. Fresh leaders and good knots are a good idea.
- From a kayak, finding kingfish is usually a simple case of getting to the right area where you’d expect fish to be and then waiting. Kingfish are fast moving, schooling fish, so you can’t chase them down and simply have to wait until they arrive.
Rob’s Preferred Kingfish Tackle
- Rob uses similar tackle from a kayak as he’d use from a boat, preferring 7 foot Fin Nor rods with plenty of backbone and a reasonably lively tip. For reels, Rob uses Van Star reels, which are fully sealed and made for kayak fishing where a dunking is inevitable. His reels are loaded with 50lb line and he adds 1.5 or so metres of 30-60lb fluorocarbon leader to this combination when targeting kingfish.
Rob’s Best Kingfish Fishing Lures
- 9″ Lunker City Sluggo’s in either white or clear colours are Rob’s top choice for Portland Kingfish. Rob uses these unweighted with the hooks they are sold with. They’re cast out, allowed to sink for a metre or so and worked back briskly with some stabs of the rod.
- When the fish are less aggressive or not taking Sluggos Rob switches to a 60mm Halco Roosta Popper, which he finds will often elicit strikes by creating surface disturbance.
- When the weather turns for the worse and the fish go deeper Rob switches to metal jigs, which can be sunk down deep and worked back vigorously, with occasional pauses to let them sink back down. Rob finds these lures far less effective than the previous two lures, but worth a try if the fish are down deeper.