Naturally I've already started fielding questions about which lures I'm going to be focused on using during my upcoming solo kayak fishing expedition and no doubt this will continue long after the trip is over. To pre-empt that somewhat and provide somewhere that I can quickly point the eternally curious to I thought I'd compile a quick list of the lures I'm packing and why.
It'll come as no surprise to anyone who's watched my Rapala Magnum CD Highlight reel video clip that these will be my go-to lure for the most part. Alongside a good collection of CD's (a variety of colours in 14 and 18cm models) there are also a few Magnum X-Raps for good measure. Both models seem equally adept at catching fish and are particularly well suited to trolling at higher speeds. Considering I'll be sailing most of the time it follows that I'll be trolling most of the way. Time and again these have proven themselves to be ideal for trolling from kayaks at a wide range of speeds, which is precisely what I need. Expect to see me pulling in some good fish with these.
As evidenced in my latest YKFS video clip, I've found a another particularly effective trolling lure in the Maxrap, which with it's shallower diving depths makes for an excellent attractant for surface fish. I'm expecting to encounter plenty of shallow water along the way and there'll be times when I'll be replacing the CD's or Xraps with these. There'll also be other times when I'll use the Maxraps in tandem alongside them to, especially when I'm intentionally exploring various depths to see where the fish are lurking. Also because the Maxraps cast beautifully, so they double as a useful lure to cast into surface activity such as baitball feeding frenzies, or dark torpedo shapes darting about just a few feet down.
Most of the larger hardbody trolling lures will be packed away in a large waterproof resistant box (bottom centre of image), safely tucked away in a drybag inside the hull. Each day I'll be starting out with a hand full of them in my 'Go to' box (top left in image), which I'll have stored easily accessible somewhere on deck. If things go according to plan each day, I shouldn't need to have to access my stash of lures stored within the hull while on the water. Besides... I'll have more than just my grab box within reach and nor will I be using larger trolling lures exclusively. Before moving on from trolling based lures, of course I included some skirt styled lures as well - the very same 'tuna catcher' model from Williams, which appeared to be a bit of a hit with the spanish mackerel at fraser Isl last year. I'll be pulling these out when the wind really gets going and speeds are optimal. The wrap that I have these stored in will be shoved into the waterproof gear bag attached to the back of my skipper seat.
Also stored here is a medium size Plano waterproof box (shown left in image) containing an assortment of other lures, from Storm Thunderblades to Rapala Rippin Raps, Slashbaits and poppers, all of which are intended for casting at surface action or fishing the surface and shallow waters, as well as reefy patches in hope of pulling out a coral trout. Many of these lures could also be trolled to good effect, in shallower waters, or for surface fish, or otherwise in a pre-determined 'match the hatch' attempt.
I'm also packing a small but reliable collection of soft plastic lures that which will be employed for casting at structure and activity as well as jigging around reef. Packaged in a heavy duty waterproof satchel are large plastics such as Silstar stickbaits (which I've had success with on snapper in the past and Carl with spanish at Fraser Isl 2011), medium sized Storm Wildeye swimbait shads and smaller pro minnows (that look suspiciously like anchovies and bluebait). To compliment these staples I have a few small curltail grubs and worm like plastics (also from Storm) which might be put to good use at creek mouths or in very calm drifting conditions.
Overall I am carrying twice as many lures as have done for previous expeditions, which makes sense given I think it's duration will be at least twice as long. I very much doubt I'll go through them all but if I do, at the very least that will have meant the fish were really on! Either way, I'm confident I'll be catching good fish!