The blue marlin, one of the largest and most striking fish in the ocean, is also one of the most exciting species of fish to catch. Blue marlin fishing is not child's play - but then again, neither is the $100K prize for 'Heaviest Blue Marlin' (over 236kg) up for grabs in the 2018 Port Stephens Garmin Billfish Shootout! If you're serious and you have the guts to try, here's what you need to know, according to Brent 'Hammer' Hancock, to reel in a blue marlin...
In the past, conquering blue marlin was left to the 'big boys' of competitive game fishing. But with a little knowledge and lot of determination, landing a blue marlin is certainly within reach. As with any sport, your greatest chance of success starts with having the right gear and knowing how to use it.
Large skirted lures have been the go-to blue marlin lures for decades. Skirted lures can be rigged up with hooks and trolled as lures, or they can be used as teasers in conjunction with bait. Trolling for blue marlin is by far the most effective way to cover water and find fish. It can be extremely fast-paced and dramatic as well as monotonous and uneventful, but more often than not it's a combination of both - hours of boredom interrupted by seconds of absolute frenzy!
After many enquiries, I've put together a suggested blue marlin spread for the 2018 Garmin Billfish Shootout. All proven performers in our local Port Stephens waters, here's my Top 5 Blue Marlin Lures...
Blues love smashing lures in close to the boat. In motion, the Cracker is turbulent - popping up out of the water before completely disappearing underneath, erratically wavering left to right and mesmerising fish towards the boat.
The Roach is a stable lure in all conditions, with a wicked head shake for maximum vibration. producing a nice big smoke trail, the darker colours of this lure contrast with the Magenta Pink inner skirt to provide contrast in the boat wash!
The Smoka features a long, turbulent smoke trail and tight continuous action, perfect for chasing blues.
The 'go-to' lure in any spread. Enough said.
This is probably the most exciting new marlin lure on the market. The first time it was run, the Thunderstruck was smashed by a blue marlin within ten minutes! The blue green luminescent inner skirt of this combo lights up in the water, enticing blue marlin into your spread.
It can be easily argued that blue marlin are the most thrilling fish species to tame, hence why so many tournaments centre around blue marlin fishing. Raising a hefty blue marlin up to your spread and watching it smash your lures will be a moment you won't ever forget - especially if you're taking home $100K!
Come in and chat to us at Tackle World Port Stephens to get advice on gearing up for the NPSGFC 2018 Garmin Billfish Shootout or phone us on (02) 4984 2144 to pre-order your lures for delivery in person at the Briefing Night, on Friday 16th February 2018.
See you there and good luck!
Author: Brent 'Hammer' Hancock - Tackle World Port Stephens
For more information regarding the 2018 NPSGFC Garmin Billfish Shootout click here.