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  1. #1

    Lightbulb Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Having spent all my life bottom fishing, I have not a clue as to good technique and positioning for mackerel. Do not wish to join the crush on Palm Beach or Mermaid, and do not fish on weekends. Spotties---scoolies but would troll to and from the positions.
    Would someone be kind enough to give me an idea of depth and position for trolling or anchoring up north of the seaway which are visited by mackerel in summer.

  2. #2

    Re: Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Cant help with location, as not from your area, but as no one else appears to have responded yet, I'll try and help with the first bit. Trolling between bottom fishing locations, especially early in the season, high speed skirts around 10 - 12 knots, on a wire trace. We do this hoping to pick up a wahoo, and get the odd Spanish or good spottie as well. When anchored, float out a livie under a balloon, suggest about 20 ft of line under the balloon as a start, well away from the boat to minimize cross overs. Again single strand wire ( not too thick, say 40 - 50 lb) and use really small strong swivels, a small live bait nose hook and a treble as a stinger. Also float out a pillie, maybe without a balloon, we use triple gangs with the pillies, around 5/0 or 6/0, as sometimes the spotties and schoolies seem to prefer them over livies.
    In my view your best shot is very slow trolling live bait if you want spanish, at least one on the surface and one down a little bit, either using a downrigger or a large barrel sinker. Again, slow trolling a pillie as well, will help your chances on schoolies/spotties. Often if you forego the wire you will get a lot more hits, and more bite-offs, but its a way of finding if they are there, as sometimes they get fussy about the wire
    By surface slow trolling one rod out each side, and one a bit deeper in the middle, you don't tangle with 3 lines out. Run one well back if no other boats close by.
    We keep a light rod ready with a small slug handy in case they are busting up on the surface. Often they wont hit a big metal lure when they are feeding on small bait.

    good luck

  3. #3

    Re: Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Thanks so much Tag123. I think luck plays a large part, then skill. ---"First find your fish".
    I do appreciate your help.

  4. #4

    Re: Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Troll deep diver HB like Helco laser pros, look for bait on the sounder when fishing unknown waters. Once you fine the fish slow troll rigged gars if you don't have live bait. Small mack tuna are deadly bait for big Spanish. If you want to know more about rigs pm me, I will send you some pics of what I use. I fish for them in 12-20m of water mostly drop offs and shallow reef. They always in schools of fish around the same size, if you want the big ones go big baits, fish as light a s possible they can be fussy at times. Your bait presentation must be good, as they don't like spinning bait. I use light 15-20kg single strand wire and small 4/0 VMC treble hooks in my rigs for dead and live bait. Troll dead bait at 4-6 kp/h live bait a little slower depending what bait fish it is 2-4 kp/h. Lures as fast as the lure will swim correctly, also tweak your lures tow point so they swim correctly, I never just use then out the box as they always tend to swim incorrectly at max speed. . No need to go heavy on the main line either, they clean fighters so 8-10kg mono is the max I use and have plenty of it on the spool if you get a 20kg model it will take 100m on its first run. Fish early morning and late afternoon on top water baits and then deeper later in the day. They don't like boat traffic, so getting out in the week will increase your chances.. if the fish are not thick and schooled up in one place.
    Life is short fish hard!!!
    21,6 Sea Fox WA Pro ....

  5. #5

    Re: Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Just be wary of the green zone that extends half the length of South Stradbroke if fishing north of the seaway.Look in 15-20 metres outside this.As far as rigs go for spotties,no heavier than 20lb mono,3 gang 4/0 or 5/0.If you get bitten off,resort to no more 50 mm single strand wire or a 4 gang with top hook completely exposed.Good luck !

  6. #6

    Re: Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Thanks to those who have responded with advice .
    I will indeed "Give it a crack"

  7. #7

    Re: Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Try any depth Halco Laser Pro. I've caught some of my best Spanish on the shallow diving Laser Pro in the pilchard colour. I'm on the sunny coast but they may work down your way.

  8. #8

    Re: Hints for Mackeral North of Goldcoast Seaway

    Any area that holds bait will be half a chance. The artificial reef down that way may be worth a look. We have caught them on the shallow grounds a bit south of the seaway as well. If you can get live slimies and dead slow troll them, if the macks are there you will know pretty quickly. In my experience yakkas are a poor second unless they are really chewing. Definitely have found it is worth investing in a downrigger if you are going to do a bit of this. Rig your baits with a stinger treble on wire - the light weight chemical sharpened jobs seem to work the best. The other thing we have found helps is a set of outriggers. Maybe it's just dumb luck but we take at least 95% of our strikes on the outriggers and downrigger. We have had days where from about 20 strikes, not one has come from the centre surface rods. They don't have to be flash - I use a couple of cheap 12 foot surf rods in angled rod holders sitting in the outside mounts in my rocket launcher. They also help with reducing tangles during turns.

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