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    by Published on 03-08-12 03:46 AM     Number of Views: 1073 

    A few days ago, our team at ISO Fishing Lifestyle had an early morning ISO fishing session for pigs. We were joined by our client Johnathon who was trying out ISO fishing for the first time.
    After waking up at 4:30am, we arrived at our location at 5:30am. We commenced our 15 minute walk to the spot in the dark. By the time we reached the cliff, first light had hit the sky which made it safer to abseil down the cliff.

    Abseiling down cliffs is a part of rock fishing and gives us access to ledges with better quality fishing as often these spots are less prone to overfishing and your guaranteed to have the spot for yourself almost everytime. Abseiling down cliffs isn't dangerous if done with the correct techniques.
    Some helpful tips include:

    • Take your time, don't rush yourself and do it at your own pace
    • Make sure your footing is secure before making the next move
    • Always try and keep 3 points of contact with the cliff
    • Try and keep your body as close as you can to the cliff
    • Try and utilise as much upper body strength as you can
    • Always have good secure grip of the rope

    Due to work priorities, we were restricted to only being able to fish from sunrise to about 10am which was bad news as we were looking at an 8am low tide. This particular spot we decided to fish becomes quite shallow at low tide and the action slows down as the fish head out to the reefs in the deeper water.

    As the sun had come up, conditions weren't looking ideal with the swell was a lot calmer than we had expected. The water was crystal clear with minimal wash and the tide was running out quickly. Knowing that we might only have 1-2 hours of good fishing before the tide bottoms out, I had pre-rigged 2 ISO rods the night before to minimise preparation time and maximise fishing time.
    Today our burley was quite simple with just bread crumbs and prawn pellets. It's important to make the correct consistency for burley, not too wet or not too dry as the burley needs to be the right texture so that it can be scooped into a nice ball and sink for a while before dispersing or else the burley will just get dragged away by the swell/current and work against you by taking the fish away from you.

    I decided to pull out the SFC VIP rod in the 1.5 size with the Daiwa Impult 2500LBD first. My rig consisted of 3.5 (14lb) floating line, 3B+g2 Suzzeji Bullet style ISO float, 3.5 (14lb) fluro carbon leader, g2 V cushion on the top third of my trace followed by a 2B split shot on the bottom 3rd of my trace and then a size 7 Gamakatsu hook.


    I was straight into the action from the first cast and after 5 minutes I was hooked onto a solid pig. There are very few fish in the world that can rival the initial burst of power of Black Drummer as they dive for that reef. This pig had forced me to release my lever-brake multiple times in a row and there was nothing I could do stop it as it busted me off on the reef. Interestingly this pig had decided to head for the reef out far rather than try and bury me under my feet. I'd have to estimate that pig somewhere around the 50-53cm as in the past I've landed Drummer to 48.5cm on this setup quite comfortably.

    Determined to stick with same setup, I rigged up again and continued fishing only to find that 5 minutes later the 3.5 (14lb) leader had snapped almost instantly upon hook up. Frustrated by this, I decided to finally bring out the big guns. The second rod I had pre-rigged the night before is a No.3 Yong-Sung Ki ISO rod matched with a Team Daiwa Advantage 4000 loaded with No.4 (16lb) floating line. The rig is the same as the first setup except I beefed up the leader to No.5 (20lb) fluro carbon and a size 9 Gamakatsu hook.
    During this time, my fellow team member Gabriel had hooked up to a decent pig and was unfortunate as the hook pulled. Gabriel had also brought out the big guns this time as the previous session we had on this ledge, whilst he had managed to land some nice pigs on 8lb gear, the bigger ones had dusted him up.


    Now armed with the heavy gear, I was keen to wrestle it out with that big pig again. 10 minutes had passed and finally I saw my ISO float zip down through the water and disappear. I struck and came up solid to a rampaging pig. On the heavy gear, the fight was relative easy and I had a chance to demonstrate some of the fighting techniques using ISO rod to our client Johnathon whilst bringing the fish in. The fish was a nice pig, not a monster but measured at 45cm. The next 30 minutes of fishing was quite average with a few pigs around the 30-38cm mark being caught and then we had hit the dead low tide. I really regretted not starting off wit the heavy gear first and being able to land those first 2 big pigs.
    As predicted the bite had slowed down and the water around the whole headland was clear and shallow and we could see right down to the bottom everywhere. Whenever I could managed a decent cast out which reached the reef out in deeper water, I would get hit but the fish were very shy and not taking the bait down. The 20lb leader probably didn't help either with the clear water.
    We continued to heavily burley even with the action slowing down and suddenly Gabriel strikes and comes up solid with the 1.75 Daiwa Olega buckling over. The fish seem to be on steroids as it fought like a UFC cage fighter and when he got the fish up, it was a nice Silver Trevally.


    1 hour had passed with no action and I decided to fish right under my feet where the water was only 1.5m deep. I was placing the ISO float so close to the ledge that the float was occasionally bumping into the cunjevoi covered ledge. Suddenly my ISO float zips down and my rod buckles over. With less than 30cm of line from my rod tip to the float I didn' event get a chance to strike and was slugging it out with a drummer from under my feet. Fighting a pig this close is a whole different ball game. There is no stretch in the line so every power dive and movement made by the pig is amplified. Once I got the pig up and landed it, it measured at 40cm. I did the same thing again next cast and caught a nice 38cm pig.



    Another few quiet moments had passed and we decided to move over to the left hand side of the headland. The tide had started to change and the fish were slowly coming back onto the bite. The water was so clear with no swell that we could see the Drummer coming out from the rocks or reef and having a go at our bait. With the burleying kicking in, we landed a few Drummer in the 32cm-39cm range. Johnathon was having a ball catching 3 Drummer in a row. He seemed to have developed a working pattern and drift in conjunction with the burley.

    With the tide starting to rise, I decided to go back to the original ledge and hunt for that big pig. As I got my first cast out, I look over to the left to see Johnathon engaged with a big fish. The rod tip was thumping violently and when the fish came up, it was a monster Luderick. The Luderick measured at 42cm and was one of the highlights of the session.
    With the tide starting to rise and the prime Drummer fishing time starting to begin now, it was unfortunate we had to leave due to other priorities but we had a good time and our client Johnathon had done well for his first try at ISO fishing. We took a few snapshots of the fish we decided to keep for the table. Overall it was quite an average session for this particular area but I'm quite sure if we weren't ISO fishing we could have caught nothing in the clear and calm conditions we were fishing in.
    As we were walking back to the car, I was still regretting not starting off with the big guns and losing that first pig which probably would have been the biggest pig of the session.