One lure, hundreds of barramundi
Upon arriving at Cape York for our annual barra trip, the anticipation of hooking into some good fish was intensifying. In the lead up the trip, myself and two good mates spoke about previous trips, reminiscing on what worked and what didn’t. Knowing how different each season can be, we knew one thing was certain – we were going to give it a red-hot crack. We often refer to the saying ‘go hard or go home’.
This trip was exciting! In my tackle kit I was equipped with a handful of the Berkley Shimma Pro-Rigs which I’d heard about from their early testing days and knew it was going to be the first lure I’d tie on. Let’s just say the Pro-Rig lures and the trip was a huge success! With over 300 fish landed between the 3 of us, with the Pro-Rig a clear favourite and the standout lure of the trip.
We all know how easily a barramundi can tear lures apart, but on day one I landed over 25 fish on the same lure and to my surprise it showed little to no wear and was ready to go again. It wasn’t long and the rest of the crew rummaged through my tackle bag to get their hands on a Pro-Rig. When chasing fish in the top end, I can confidently say these pre-rigged beauties are a must have!
The Shimma Pro-Rig is available in three sizes – 4.5”, 5.5” & 6.5” with ten great colours suitable for all types of water visibility. We were fishing in dirty water on the west coast of Cape York and found the 5.5” in colour Pink Glitter was the standout, although we had great success on other colours like Green Neon and Purple Haze. The contrast of the brighter lures stood out in the murky water compared to a more neutral colour which a lot of people will turn to when they are trying to “match the hatch” however that may not always be the best approach. Don’t be afraid to give the bright colours a go, they worked for us. To imitate the schools of mullet around, we found the 5.5 inch and the 6.5 inch to be the perfect size. Fish from 60cm up to 95cm were all keen to hit the same lure when it was presented to them.
This lure is versatile when it comes to working it in different depths and scenarios. We found ourselves targeting schooled up barramundi that we’d find on the side scan, and slow rolling our lures through them at a steady pace worked best. We also spent some time flicking drains during the run-out tide, again the slow roll enticing the bites, but hopping across the bottom and out into the main channel got them fired up too. When slow rolled the paddle tail kicks hard which can be felt through the entire rod. The hooks are in a great position, ensuring all bites were converted. They also allow the lure to have a good body roll, but not too much ensuring the lure swims straight 100% of the time. The Pro-Rig is one of the easiest lures we have had the pleasure of using, and one of the most effective too.
Next time you’re going to chase a barra, do yourself a big favour and grab yourself a few Shimma Pro-Rigs. You’ll be glad you did.
By Ben Roberts – Berkley Pro Team