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Spinning is growing in popularity so fast that it seems to have left the infamous dropshot fishing in its dust. These days there is a huge variety of hard plastics and metal spoons available, giving the light tackle enthusiast ammunition that can catch just about any species of fish from a shore-based location along the entire South African coastline.

 

Before I get too much into the various spoons and lures, let’s cover the tackle used for spinning.

The beauty of spinning is that the tackle becomes much lighter than is usual for shore angling, making the fight a lot more challenging and way more fun. Because of the huge variety of spoons and lures and their weights it is important to decide what you want to achieve and which species you would predominantly like to target. The new technology surrounding the good old ‘coffee grinder’ or spinning reel means spooning has evolved into a much more widely practiced angling art. This art is not new but rather the combinations of rod, reel, and braid are brand new, allowing us to get great results from the lightest of outfits and once again putting the important part of angling at the forefront, namely FUN!

 

My preferred spinning arsenal is comprised of two outfits, mixed and matched with different brands in order to give me the best all-round performance – basically self tailor-made to suit my requirements and standards. My lighter outfit is an Adrenalin 10ft 3-piece HMG rod matched with a Daiwa Seagate QD 3500 reel loaded with 12lb Berkley® NanoFilTM braid. My heavy spinning outfit comprises a Kingfisher Poseidon ultra-light spinning rod and a 3-piece HMG, matched with the Daiwa Saltiga Surf 4500 spinning reel loaded with 20lb Mustad UltraBraid.

The lighter outfit can cast spoons and lures up to around 2½oz, while the heavier outfit is designed to cast up to 4oz. This gives one great scope – various lures can be used in order to convince a fish to eat one of your offerings. When venturing out for an early morning throw, one will invariably take both outfits along and, according to sea conditions, decide there and then which one to use.

 

If the sea is a little up, then casting distance becomes an issue; one would therefore use the heavier outfit with a heavier lure in order to get into the more productive water. If the sea is flat, then the lighter outfit is the immediate first choice. Also, if there are smaller species about like shad, then the lighter outfit provides a lot more fun and better results. Well, that’s my recipe for the tackle; now for the juicy bit, which generally has everyone stumped.

 

Lures

There is a huge variety of lures in all shapes and sizes that have done the trick for me in the past. Some you may know very well or have heard of, others are new on the scene. I will cover each of my favourites with the when, why and how relating to each.

 

Chase range


The chase range of bullet spoons remains one of my favourite spoon choices; these spoons are made using white metal, which makes them incredibly durable and allows you to easily add some shine whenever they start looking a little dull. What I really enjoy is the fact that each model is individually swim tested, which sets your mind at rest that you are getting a really good swimming action going; being cast tested on top of that means that each of the models is designed for balanced long-distance casting, allowing you to target fish off the South African shore usually reserved for some tropical island most of us cannot afford to go to.

 

Chase bullet


No 5 – 45gm

This spoon is my all-time favourite and has accounted for more fish than any other spoon I have ever used. It is very aerodynamic and truly casts a mile; the short sharp edges give it a very erratic swimming action that closely resembles a fleeing bait fish, which will even get a goldfish interested. Being made of white metal, this spoon is robust and very easy
to shine up using the back of a knife.

 

Fishing method

This spoon is designed to be cast out as far as possible and retrieved in order to imitate a fleeing or injured bait fish. My favourite method is to cast the spoon out there and allow it to sink to the bottom; you can feel the knock on the braid as it touches Mother Earth. Then retrieve it. Here I vary the retrieval speed until I get a bite; once you have found the speed producing the bites, then stick to it as you will find this will be exactly what the fish wants.

 

Target species

This spoon has accounted for many species, not only for me – many other anglers have notched up some awesome catches. The most commonly caught fish on this spoon is the queen mackerel; however, I have also caught springer, kingfish, shad, garrick and wolf herring, while I have seen queenfish and couta (king mackerel) caught.

 

Chase spoon


No 3 – 70gm

This spoon is my favourite for sardine run time; its slightly larger profile is the perfect imitation of a sardine and its aerodynamic design with longer edges gives it a great swimming action; with a slow retrieve it kicks its tail end back and forth, while a fast retrieve has it darting about erratically and occasionally splashing on the surface, just like a sardine fleeing for its life. Most game fish that hang around sardine shoals find this spoon irresistible.

Out of sardine season, I like this spoon for targeting garrick, especially off the beaches off the northern coast.

 

Fishing method

As mentioned, it is a bullet-shaped spoon that casts a mile, and that is your aim – cast out, allow the spoon to sink and work back to the beach or rocks with the rod held low, varying the retrieve speed until you find which speed triggers the fish to pounce. In the sardine run I like to crank this spoon