Kabura free slide
The pursuit of hapuka, bass, and bluenose is the soundtrack to winter fishing: the sound of fishermen grunting and groaning as they wind up 100-500m of line from the depths, hopefully with a fish on the end. The drop usually consists of a 24-42oz sinker with two, baited, double circle hooks (12/0-16/0 size) tied on a 150lb leader. This rig has been the "go to" since long ago. The introduction of braided line means now you can effectively target the deep crew with lures. The first, a lead jig often reserved for kingfish, can be used in the 350 -550g weight range. It must have lots of luminous glow as colour is irrelevant at depth. The jig needs to have a sleek profile and be tail weighted, so it will drop quickly. Alternatively, the small, often motionless, slow jig (as distinct from inchikus), weighing around 25-100g can sometimes be effective on smaller species. Enter the giant slow jig. Tipping the scales at 300g, 500g and 750G, it's simply a big, heavy, diamond-shaped lure, with -- here's the important bit -- a blue luminous glow. Blue is the last colour to be absorbed at depth, and luminous lures emit light rather than reflect it. Here's how to fish the slow jig: drop it to the sea floor, wind it up a metre, and keep it about there by letting out more line as you drift. Easy, really, apart from the workout you get winding up a 40-50kg fish. A modern braid rod and not-too-fast retrieve ratio braid reel is the key. Use eighty pound braided line, and 130 -150lb leader -- any less and you'll likely get smoked by the big ones.