Boating the Silver Bullion
Bass love undulating sandbanks and underwater reef pinnacles swept by considerable tide, where they lurk in seabed troughs or the lee of rocky features waiting to ambush passing food items. Features like these can be found in river estuaries, in inshore coastal waters, and a considerable distance offshore. Other good bass haunts are often to be found where there are submerged man-made structures such as old pilings and struts from redundant rigs etc. Bass respond to lures like weighted shads and plugs under the correct conditions but bait fishing tends to produce more and bigger fish more of the time. Live-baits reign supreme where bass are concerned. The top three bait choices are live Joey mackerel, live launce or a great big king ragworm.
Long flowing traces terminating in either single hook, a 4/0 pennel or 2/0 treble hook are universally effective. Traces are generally 6 - 10 feet in length, and perhaps half as long again depending on the venue. Traces can be worked off a running boom, or in the form a Portland rig which has no boom and closely resembles what carp anglers would call a helicopter rig with a long snood. Fluorocarbon in 15 – 20 lb is the favoured trace material because it is virtually invisible underwater. Core boat tackle would be a responsive rod of preferably 8 feet or a little longer, and a medium-sized multiplier reel filled with a good quality 20 lb braided line. The fishing technique is for the weight to touch bottom and to allow the bait to slowly trot back in the tide keeping in touch with the bottom at all times. When a bite is felt it is important not to strike aggressively. Instead, immediately lower the rod tip when the bite is felt, lifting and winding into the weight of the fish when it positively jars the rod tip a second time.