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A DAY ON THE BLUE

The excitement and anticipation that builds up before any fishing session is always a buzz! Especially when heading out on the blue water! What will the first fish of the day be? What species will be encountered? What amazing things will I experience today? These are all the thoughts running around my head prior to a day's fishing off the coast of Far North Queensland. Pushing the throttle down and cruising out to my favorite fishing marks to tangle with the species that lurk in these waters is a real thrill.

To maximize the day's results I'll make sure I have the right gear for every situation. As I'm venturing out to my destination, I scan the ocean for any surface activity and birds working. For these encounters I always have tied on the ZMan 7'' Scented Jerk ShadZ, rigged on a 1oz TT Lures HeadlockZ HD jighead. This presentation is perfect for long casts into the tuna bust ups. It can be worked fast across the surface, creating an erratic skipping sub surface action, while also heavy enough to be allowed to sink down under the bait ball nice and quick to see what is lurking down below the surface activity. On many occasions I have picked up some great fish under small tuna bust-ups, including Spanish mackerel, golden trevally and cobia just to name a few. They are waiting down there for the scraps from the baitfish. Just letting this presentation naturally sink will get the bites.

By now my arms are well and truly warmed up for the days fishing ahead, pushing on and continuing my adventure to my next destination. Admiring the ocean with the wind in my face. What will the day bring? With hundreds of wrecks lying on the seafloor off the Queensland coast it is easy to come up with a solid game plan. From shipping containers to World War 2 aircraft and of course the large number of vessels that have fallen to cyclones and rough weather over the past years. Wrecks can offer some of the best offshore fishing available. At certain times of the year these places cater for just about every species that live in our tropical waters.

When I arrive at my chosen location, I spend some time prospecting the area, using my sounder to locate any structure, mark fish and find my drift line. When I have put this together, then it's game on! Depth and wind speed will determine what size HeadlockZ I will be running; normally I will use a 2oz in the 40m mark.

My favorite ZMan to send down is the ZMan 8" StreakZ XL. This plastic is the perfect option to cover all species from the bottom dwellers such as coral trout, fingermark and cod, to the hard-hitting pelagic line peelers such as giant trevally, queenfish and mackerel. They all love chasing this bite-sized presentation up through the water column and on occasions I have had them vertically launch out of the ocean boat side as I'm lifting my plastic out from the water! Exciting stuff!

As I open the bail arm and send down my presentation I always watch my line, as many times the fish will hit the lure on the way down. The tails on the StreakZ give of a nice tight swimming action, making it hard to resist. When I feel my ZMan has hit the bottom, I erratically jig it up around 5m off the sea floor. I will repeat this action until I have completely drifted over the structure. I will then wind and jig up as fast as I can to get the attention from the pelagic species such as mackerel, tuna and trevally. I love using this system as it allows me to target as many species in the one drift as possible.

Another great option to have in the tackle box is the TT Lures Rev Head HD jighead. This has turned those quiet days on the water into loud ones! Adding that extra bling to your favorite plastic is a sure way to get the attention from every species. They can be worked as fast as you like, or a simple lift and drop will get you hooked up.

TT has so many options to use out on the water and that's what it's all about, finding out what the fish want and offering them the right presentation. See you out on the water!

Cheers Jimmy

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FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 2017