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Have softies had their day?

Printed From: The Fishing Website
Category: Saltwater Fishing
Forum Name: Soft Bait Fishing
Forum Description: Anything to do with this latest and greatest way of catching our favourite species
URL: https://www.fishing.net.nz/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=129116
Printed Date: 16 Oct 2019 at 8:47am


Topic: Have softies had their day?
Posted By: MightyBoosh
Subject: Have softies had their day?
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 12:00pm
Over the last year, I have got more in to micro-jigging in shallow water. It's got to the point where my go to lure is a microjig and don't even think about softies. 

Microjigs come in all shapes and sizes, and even different materials making them almost as versatile as softies. I like that they have small hooks, whereas big softies require larger hooks. Jigs also cast very well.

When I've fished the two side by side, microjigs almost always come out on top. 

Have softies had their day?



Replies:
Posted By: kaveman
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 1:06pm
Good question Andrew
Soft bait definately still part of my arsenal even though i use more micro jigs now. They are so easy to cast and they certainly catch plenty of fish albiet i still think that more big snapper are caught on softbait than small micro jigs
Plenty more options out there now too regarding softbaits , Gulp certainly havent got  the lion market share they once had.
I have had days when softies outfish micro jigs and vice versa so happy to keep using both
My micro jig/ softbait rod can handle either with ease so that helps not having to have another specialist rod


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www.kavemantackle.co.nz


Posted By: MightyBoosh
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 1:19pm
Thanks Kevin. I've had one day when paddle tail softies outfished microjigs and that was in the Far North, not one of my usual spots. I also use a softbait rod for microjigs. 

I think the one benefit of softies over jigs is that they can be rigged weedless, but I don't see many people doing this in NZ. 


Posted By: Polar_Kiwis
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 6:09pm
Originally posted by MightyBoosh MightyBoosh wrote:


I think the one benefit of softies over jigs is that they can be rigged weedless, but I don't see many people doing this in NZ. 

What hooks do you use to rig weedless? What size softies do you use? I'm keen to try some from shore.


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Here fishy, fishy fishy.... Nom, nom, nom


Posted By: fishwisperer
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 6:56pm
I'm an old school bait fisherman but have been doing more micro / slowpictch jigging over the past couple seasons - I don't do a lot of chasing workups but when time suits when the fish are schooling I do like dropping the jigs and occasionally softies. 

I have also started throwing a few skutes around past couple seasons and once you get a good technique with the skutes and jigs I think you can pretty much miss the softies out - I have a skute couple seasons old and still catching on it, unlike softies you can pretty much fish one for the whole day. No need to re-bait, I think to it would be great for the environment and fish - no fish eating plastic and people not throwing the left overs over the side....

Heading North in a couple weeks and looking at throwing around skutes, little big eye blades and small diving lures in the shallows will be probably leaving the softies at home....


Posted By: puff
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 7:05pm
No..... to put it simply


Posted By: Muppet
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 7:07pm
No


Posted By: smudge
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 7:39pm
Originally posted by kaveman kaveman wrote:

Good question Andrew
Soft bait definately still part of my arsenal even though i use more micro jigs now. They are so easy to cast and they certainly catch plenty of fish albiet i still think that more big snapper are caught on softbait than small micro jigs
Plenty more options out there now too regarding softbaits , Gulp certainly havent got  the lion market share they once had.
I have had days when softies outfish micro jigs and vice versa so happy to keep using both
My micro jig/ softbait rod can handle either with ease so that helps not having to have another specialist rod

Good honest answer Kevin!


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Best gurnard fisherman in my street


Posted By: MightyBoosh
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 7:49pm
Originally posted by Polar_Kiwis Polar_Kiwis wrote:

What hooks do you use to rig weedless? What size softies do you use? I'm keen to try some from shore.

Good question. I tend to use the Gulp 6 inch grubs with 6/0 Owner Beast hooks and a bait screw. The hooks look huge when you first get your hands on them. It's the gape that makes them look so big, this is useful with those big softies. 

Otherwise, I tend to use small Gulp or Zman paddle or curly tails with 2/0 worm hooks. I think the brand was VMC. I bought them from Marine Deals about 6 years ago and haven't found them since. I cannot track down a small worm hook with decent gauge wire. The hooks designed for freshwater bass in the USA wouldn't last a minute with snapper. 


Posted By: MightyBoosh
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 7:50pm
Puff & Muppet - any further comments? Is it that you find that softies catch as many fish as microjigs, or just happy with softies?


Posted By: Muppet
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 7:59pm
Not really just simply softies ain't had their day, neither has bait, jigs, inchiku's, ledger rigs, live baiting, trolling..... 


Posted By: puff
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 8:57pm
Ditto muppet....


Posted By: MightyBoosh
Date Posted: 28 Sep 2018 at 10:06pm
I wasn't suggesting that softies be consigned to the scrap heap, and never spoken of again. More that they have come out the limelight in the fishing media, and have fallen out of favour with ordinary fishos like me.


Posted By: Downtown
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2018 at 1:07am
Its hard to find really good fisherman but when you do they are generally good at something specific and can apply their knowledge across a wide range of techniques. For me softbaiting produces what i want eg interactive fishing with results. The day that softbaits have had there day that is the day i stop fishing.


Posted By: Muppet
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2018 at 5:52am
Plus MB there are still a lot of fisho's who still have not tried softbaits. And softbait sets are the biggest sellers in my local tackle shop which suggests far from a slow down


Posted By: pjc
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2018 at 7:01am
Used softies a few times and caught fish,but my concern is when you get 1/2 a bait back is it floating around or jammed inside throat? Are they're degradable if so how long as find a number around shoreline.

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water water everywhere,how many fish does it hold?


Posted By: Steps
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2018 at 7:06am
WQould it also depend on where you fish?
 ie going from east coast bottom end to the more murky, bigger currents, heavier sinkers etc of the manukau, and beyond the bars?
 This is the move we are making shortly so have been asking a lot of questions/ whys.
 Thu will as usual also be experimenting/ finding a lot out the 'hard way'


Posted By: The Tamure Kid
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2018 at 10:12am
Originally posted by pjc pjc wrote:

Used softies a few times and caught fish,but my concern is when you get 1/2 a bait back is it floating around or jammed inside throat? Are they're degradable if so how long as find a number around shoreline.

I'd pick up the ones you find along the shoreline and give them a go - they are likely to be Z mans, which float and are much more durable than Gulps (the ones fish bite in half).

I've never had a Z Man bitten in half, they get a bit damaged over time but always still on the hook to dispose of responsibly at home.

You may have seen Grant's announcement about the new Catch Livies softbaits, which appear to be similarly durable and also have environmental credentials.

I've seen plenty of berley bomb bags, pillie bags etc floating around and washed up to know that bait fishers aren't immune to causing environmental issues. Also surf casters and rock fishos leaving miles of thick mono tangled around rocks, weed, lead stuck on the bottom...


Posted By: The Tamure Kid
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2018 at 10:17am
[I cannot track down a small worm hook with decent gauge wire. The hooks designed for freshwater bass in the USA wouldn't last a minute with snapper. 
[/QUOTE]

Have you tried the Trokar Flippin hook, made specifically for soft baiting (has a plastic holder near the eye)?
They are very good with grub style softies, and have quite wide gape.
I think Muppet used to use them (3/0 size) and I originally saw Stephen Tapp recommend them in NZ Fishing News.
I use them with a small ball sinker when out on the flats in summer, dragging behind the boat while I cast ahead using a normal jighead.
Using a Z Man (buoyant) which wiggles around erratically they are pretty deadly.



Posted By: The Tamure Kid
Date Posted: 29 Sep 2018 at 10:30am
Originally posted by MightyBoosh MightyBoosh wrote:

I wasn't suggesting that softies be consigned to the scrap heap, and never spoken of again. More that they have come out the limelight in the fishing media, and have fallen out of favour with ordinary fishos like me.

To some extent, tackle companies and the fishing media have to keep introducing new products and writing about new topics on the hot new technique, otherwise people turn off. There's only so much people can write about softbaiting. 
And it's human nature to get into crazes, in all walks of life, then discard whatever craze it is.

The Japanese, in particular, are always innovating with lure techniques, and softbaits have been forgotten a little.

A while ago some people were claiming they had become less effective, as fish had seen them so much. i haven't been fishing them long enough to take a view on that. But I reckon they are pretty effective if fished well.
I am an admirer of Mark Kitteridge as a fisherman and writer, and he did a whole series last year on still loving his softbaiting, ditto John Eichelsheim - though they also are experts with jigs etc, I suspect if they had to nominate one method it'd be softbaiting.
There's something about it that really appeals to me, as a former trout flyfisher, compared to the bait fishing I grew up with.

I think that in 15/20m+ an expert jig fisher (and plenty of you on the forum) would hold their own against any other method. 

In 6-15m in rocky-ish areas, I'd rather softbait. But I think there is great potential for the likes of soft vibes, bibbed lures, sinking stickbaits which the Aussies are much more accomplished in than we are.

 The problem for me is that I'm only just feeling like I'm competent at soft baiting, not ready to start from scratch on another new method and go back to beginner level.

The other point I'd make is that there are two or three distinct methods of soft baiting that I see. One is the lob ahead and fish more or less vertically school, with little twitches and jiggles often done in channels; another is what I do, which is cast well ahead and fish on the retrieve; then there's pure dragging.
I think the lob and vertical is interchangeable with micro jigs in the fluttery style, and even tail weighted jigs (as went through a snapper craze in the 1980s).


Posted By: Jiggy Jig
Date Posted: 01 Oct 2018 at 7:00pm
To me the latest soft bait craze (artificial rubber/plastic lures have been around for years) was all about braid and the light rods and reels that allowed finesse fishing. This carried over to most of the other disciplines and the modern rod building materials allow much lighter equipment to be used to great effect. The fine diameter of braid has revolutionised fishing, even smelly bait/bottom bashing, as much lighter sinkers are required. As mentioned in several posts above micro jigging and soft baiting use the same rods and reels, so are very interchangeable, as are lighter skutes, kaburas, inchikus etc. Every method, technique lure or bait will have it's day - and fads will come and go as the manufacturers look to find another way to boost their sales. Lures always catch far more fishermen than they do fish Wink

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http://www.legasea.co.nz" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: Potty
Date Posted: 01 Oct 2018 at 7:31pm
Softbaits are the best way to fish the shallows, that won’t change.
Lures are easier to use in the deep for Joe average fisher and skutes IMO are a bit trendy at present.
Softbaits allow you to cover all scenarios and are #1 for me.

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Love fishing, love my job. It's a bloody shame that they clash. http://www.legasea.co.nz" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: MightyBoosh
Date Posted: 01 Oct 2018 at 8:40pm
Originally posted by The Tamure Kid The Tamure Kid wrote:


Have you tried the Trokar Flippin hook, made specifically for soft baiting (has a plastic holder near the eye)?

Thanks TK, they look good and although they can be rigged "weedless", it doesn't look as slick as a classic worm hook rigged in such as way.


Posted By: MightyBoosh
Date Posted: 01 Oct 2018 at 8:48pm
Originally posted by The Tamure Kid The Tamure Kid wrote:


I think that in 15/20m+ an expert jig fisher (and plenty of you on the forum) would hold their own against any other method. 

In 6-15m in rocky-ish areas, I'd rather softbait.

Nail on the head there! But, I catch an awful lot of snapper over sand, so don't often risk fishing rocky areas. Maybe that's just relevant to my locality.

Originally posted by The Tamure Kid The Tamure Kid wrote:

The problem for me is that I'm only just feeling like I'm competent at soft baiting, not ready to start from scratch on another new method and go back to beginner level.

Buy a $6 microjig from Kaveman in 20 or 30g and fish it exactly as you would a softbait over sand and I think you'll become a convert! Same rod/reel and technique as softbaiting. 

Originally posted by The Tamure Kid The Tamure Kid wrote:

The other point I'd make is that there are two or three distinct methods of soft baiting that I see. One is the lob ahead and fish more or less vertically school, with little twitches and jiggles often done in channels; another is what I do, which is cast well ahead and fish on the retrieve; then there's pure dragging.

Another good point. That doesn't get mentioned much.


Posted By: shaneg
Date Posted: 01 Oct 2018 at 9:28pm
Softbaits and metal lures really good if you don't like chopping stuff up and getting your fingers dirty. Although that gulp juice is very stinky and quite corrosive. Personally being a tactile person have gone back to natural preferably fresh baits. Softbait lures still fun on light gear especially, and when fish actively feeding in workup etc.
I like catching marlin on lures but baits sometimes are best by far in a lot of conditions. Not that I have mastered that yet. But same goes for lots of species. Snapper being highly aggressive almost territorial are suckers for softies in shallows which can be fished actively wound over snags where a straylined bait will usually end up snagged up in foul. And the fish gets less of head start without running off and having to eat a bait.
Get good at as many techniques as possible I say. Micro jigs are really good in deeper water fishing vertical but I have had great success dragging 15 gram models behind yak in less than 4 meters of water over foul on kelpie snapper


Posted By: Structfab
Date Posted: 02 Oct 2018 at 8:24am
I prefer softbaits when there's cuda around......those ******* love shiny stuff


Posted By: The Tamure Kid
Date Posted: 02 Oct 2018 at 12:08pm
Originally posted by MightyBoosh MightyBoosh wrote:

[

Buy a $6 microjig from Kaveman in 20 or 30g and fish it exactly as you would a softbait over sand and I think you'll become a convert! Same rod/reel and technique as softbaiting. 

[/QUOTE]

haha, I did exactly that towards the end of autumn, after reading some threads about micros. I was getting some Tasline from Kaveman, so got some of his jigs as well.
Got the ones that look similar to a BlueBlue Searide, in orange. I have some Searides as well.

Most of summer down here I fish inshore feeding flats of 7-9m, and I do that with softies. Gulp Crazy Legs is my go to for casting ahead, along with Z Mans on the dragged gear out the back.

But I'm going to give micros a try in anything deeper - for example, when I go out past Waiheke, or up to Northland and fish over sand in 18m. Softies go well there (I normally use big Gulp grubs or Nemesis) but I'm sure micro jigs will work well. I'm also going to try some 1oz soft vibes I got from Australia, which are dynamite over there. I reckon they'll go well on snapper if the hooks hold up.


Posted By: Grunta
Date Posted: 02 Oct 2018 at 4:35pm
Going back a bit (OK a lot...) I fished with a handline and two ledger-rigged baits and we caught snapper and terakihi and miscellaneous other species. I was a kid, it was fun and I still have great memories of those wonderful days on the water.

Techniques and gear have moved on a tad and these days it's great to have a variety of options that work well. 

Softbaiting certainly isn't dead from my perspective but it's only one option on any day. I like to have a few strings to the proverbial bow as what might work well on one day or location may be a bit of a fizzer the next. and that can even be the colour of a softie, or the colour/shape of the jig etc. As any trout fisherman would tell you about that point, is having a good selection of flies is wise - and that principle can certainly be applied to saltwater.




Posted By: Rainbow
Date Posted: 16 Feb 2019 at 10:47am
Many years ago an English man asked on a forum what nymphs he should tie for his forthcoming trip to NZ?    Well he got lists of patterns from at least a dozen fishos.    I also replied with a more minimalistic selection to tie brown or black ones in sizes 12-16 with various weight additions.   I explained that with such a small choice he would have more time to look and fish for trout than looking into a well stocked fly box wondering which of the many creations he should tie on.     Well, I was a bit pissed off when I got his quite nasty reply to what he thought was a big leg pull.     No leg pull at all as my summer fishing nymphs are mostly those colours and sizes with the addition of a few green caddis but even these are dispensable as most nymphs are either brown or almost black.     I place much more importance on presentation.     So why I am telling you all that?    Having  read through this blog there is an uncanny similarity to the above.     All this hard and software choice ends up being utterly confusing and confidence sapping to anyone who is susceptible to every new fad.     A bit like those boaties who sap around the sea anchoring for 30 min and are off again trying spot after spot and never give the fish a chance to find them.    If you learn to use one method well eventually you build up your confidence.    You must also learn that you will have good and bad days in anything you do especially in fishing without beating yourself up or rushing off to another trend.    Above all confidence in what you are doing and using will immunise you next time you visit a tackle store or read a fishing magazine.    Fads come and go but only a few endure.   
Rainbow


Posted By: brmbrm
Date Posted: 20 Feb 2019 at 9:58pm
Interesting to re-read this thread.  No, of course SPs haven't had their day.  I fish for pleasure, as do most here I expect.  That means some styles i enjoy more than others. Some methods work better some days, not the others.  

Example: for purely catching numbers i think on average dragging SPs (curly tails/grubs) around Auckland is the most productive.  Last trip dragging caught big fat zero - almost everything on worked jerk shads.  Tell me why?  One or two on microjigs.

Vast majority on jerk shads, soft takes, mouthing the bait.  Why?  Dont know, but that is part of the the pleasure for me.

And the best fishing for me is working a jerk shad in shallow water and getting a hard take.

But i dont know.


Posted By: Potty
Date Posted: 21 Feb 2019 at 6:00am
I suck at all the other methods so I’m stuck with softbaiting

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Love fishing, love my job. It's a bloody shame that they clash. http://www.legasea.co.nz" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: John_Ra
Date Posted: 25 Feb 2019 at 6:28pm
Originally posted by Potty Potty wrote:

I suck at all the other methods so I’m stuck with softbaiting

rubbish, you just not that good at it yet... Tongue

the last few weeks have re invigorated my softbaiting again.....
I fish Coro farms a lot!! cause my mate likes going there LOL

rarely goe's anywhere else.... we tie upto the ropes . I start with a 1/2oz jighead with either Motor oil or Atomic Sunrise curly tails. using the current (key) drop it straight down & let current carry it back hit bottom let line out as needed wait for a grab.... been working a treat...

Softbaiting not dead just going thru phases like a teen...


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http://www.legasea.co.nz" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: FizFisho
Date Posted: 26 Feb 2019 at 10:02am
Initally a lot of softbaits where non biodegradable plastic which was clearly unethical with 25% of oceanic life containing plastic or plastic traces. 

Do any of the big brands still use non biodegradeable (within a short time clearly) plastics?


Posted By: Steps
Date Posted: 26 Feb 2019 at 10:33am
I still hedge my bets between SB and bait, espec when east coast and in the manukau harbour/ on waikato river.

I dont spend hardly any time hunting down fish on the sounder, work ups etc which is primarily SB fishing.. yes birds workups but historical records, water temp season etc.. gps mark drop and catch on the drift... with occasional hook up on the sb out the back, or have time to throw forward.

SB is real good for when , heading out, stop on a known bit of foul  to set up rods etc.. a SB rod already and cast it out.. test the waters..
 Or come across a work up/ birds , and filck it out to pick up a good KY/ baitfish.. or lucky a snap under it all.
 Even  a slow troll out the back..

Our baits , over many seasons now, keep us far more busy pulling fish in than SBs...
SB far more busy looking at the sounder , cruising, casting retrieving etc.

 Even now .. new west coast grounds to learn, experiment with... lures and SBs on ledger riggs... That SB rigg in the holder always ready to flick out on a moments notice... 
A selection, in the left tackle draw under the bait board, pre mounted on hooks, already for a quick change.

 The right draw.. traces, flasher/ ledger, and pre tied flasher hooks 5/0 to 10/0.. , ready to clip on to a main line.

 SB dead/ dying... hell no.. I see no drop off in the guys.. even charters, who are dedicated SB/ lure ppl... nor the guys like us who hedge our bets on the day.

What needs to die are those dedicated SB that also have  the narrow mined .. "smelly bait" (forget sb attractants smell more) Im better than you self righteous attitude.
 The same people we consistently get more fish more often than they do all yr round.

 And yes I do very much enjoy non attitude .. still competitive, SB lure crew on board.
 





Posted By: FizFisho
Date Posted: 26 Feb 2019 at 12:08pm
I dont think you can beat SB's for certain species either. But there are so many options now. When one doesnt work, switch it up, happy days.

I started out 17 years ago in NSW with Sluggoz, cast and retrieve for Mulloway and Kingies (mostly rats back then as the population needed a bit of TLC). Loved those big long slinky white sluggoz.


Posted By: Garry 23041
Date Posted: 26 Feb 2019 at 7:10pm
Softies are dead on my boat and it's not because I didn't fish them for years and get good at it and not because I don't have them aboard, I still do, I just don't grab one anymore.

My mate proved to me last season that scoots with long tails and softies will produce consistantly larger snaps than my 30grm micros head to head when the big fish were around. I still get enough large snapper and they are not my target size in any case (they all go back).

I just love the cast and sink of a micro over a softie any day...




Posted By: BananaBoat
Date Posted: 26 Feb 2019 at 8:35pm
stink post mate, why would you want to say something like that
I just took up softbaiting a few months ago, seems to work when they catch fish
prefer baits myself


Posted By: Garry 23041
Date Posted: 01 Mar 2019 at 6:30pm
Ignore me Bananaboat there's nothing wrong with softies in my mind.

I just have a strong personal preference.




Posted By: Polar_Kiwis
Date Posted: 02 Mar 2019 at 8:09pm
Got my snaps yesterday casting well ahead of drift on softies. Happy to use any method.

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Here fishy, fishy fishy.... Nom, nom, nom



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