Well, a lot has been happening in the Epic camp over the last month or so starting with a visit from Mark Berg’s Fishing Addiction TV show.


9.9kg Snapper (Soon to star on TV in Fishing Addiction)

Bergie, came to our shores to film with Epic Adventures for a week. He brought with him his latest candidate, Brad. The aim was to make 2 EPIC/Fishing Addiction TV shows that will go to air early next year. The challenge for Brad was to catch a variety of fish, of certain weights, competing for a $5000 prize.Over the week Mark and Brad fished with Owen on Coro King out of Coromandel and Whitianga, with Chris and myself out of Amodeo Bay on the Anglers Lodge boat and with Scott on Game Chaser out of Waiheke Island.I won’t spoil the show, but you must see it!  When he was leaving to catch his flight Bergie said to me:

“The week I’ve spent with Epic Adventures has been one of the best, if not the best, in 8 years of filming”.


Captain Chase

Full time, that is, on the EPIC boat out of Whitianga.  He never really left as he was skipper/relief skipper.  But now it’s official.If you’ve been out with Captain Chase Wotten-Hunt you’ll know his expertise for putting customers onto those MASSIVE yellow tail kingfish and making sure you get them onboard!Welcome back to the full time team Chase!


11.02kg on 6kg line

Is Captain Tom Maxwell on Mad Max 2 a lucky man or what!  He took his beautiful lady, Alana, out for a fish recently and she ended up with a new woman’s record at the Whitianga Game Fishing Club.  Well done Alana and Tom.


Caught on SHIMANO Talica TAC 12 Reel with Anarchy rod

Caught on SHIMANO Stella 10000 Spin Reel on Anarchy Rod

Captain Owen Wills continues a remarkable run! What can I say.  This man is a legend. A customer recently described him as an “energiser bunny on speed”! He’s everywhere at once and always does the business.


Caught on SHIMANO Ocea Jigger Reel with on Anarchy Rod


The young guns from Penrith had a blast on Mad Max 2 with Captain Tom Maxwell.  40+ kingi’s over 3 days!  Tom amazed them with his expertise and they are already planning the next trip.


Caught on SHIMANO Bait Runner with Elite Spin Rod

Caught on SHIMANO Ocea Jigger with Anarchy Rod

Captain Chris Dabb from Anglers Lodge at Amodeo Bay
pulled in on one day

  • 3 snapper over 7Kg
  • Bin full of pan-sized snapper

The waters upon the west coast of the Coromandel have been unusually warm so the kingfish have stayed around for longer than normal.

Remember too that you can stay at Anglers Lodge at Amodeo Bay in really lovely cabins that are directly across the road from the ramp.  Once back in from fishing, Chris the skipper will assist in filleting your catch while sharing a beer with you, then sit on the deck while the fish is smoked or chuck them on the BBQ.


Taken on SHIMANO Baitrunner with Elite Spin Rod

Captain Scott Lloyd-Jones on Game Chaser out of Waiheke Island has been slaying some of the biggest snapper, trevally and kahawai the Auckland area can produce.In the last couple of weeks:

  • snapper 4-7kg
  • trevally 3-4kg
  • kahawai 2-4kg

With winter approaching Scott has many favourite spots he can take you to where you will be stray lining close to shore hunting out those resident mooching snapper that hide amongst the kelp in 6-10 metres of water.


Taken on SHIMANO Baitrunner & Released By Ali from Sydney

Scott and EPIC Adventures have put together a special deal to get people out to theSPECTACULAR FISHING at Great Barrier Island, the jewel in the crown of the Hauraki Gulf.$500 p/p per day (min 2 days/ 4 persons)

  • Charter
  • Transfers on Game Chaser boat from Auckland, (Waiheke Island or Pine Harbour)
  • Accommodation at Great Barrier Lodge
  • Breakfast

If you are interested call the Epic office on +64 21 886 223 for more info as dates are filling up quickly.


Personal best or trophy kingfish…

Get your own using EPIC methods
Book a trip with EPIC Adventures +64 21 886 223

Tip 1
Catch some live bait

This might sound easy (or not) but it is one of the secrets that we at EPIC always have first in mind to make the day a success.  Put the time in and don’t give up too early. It will make the difference between success or possible failure.

Jack Mackerel are our preferred option but beggars can’t be choosers so just take what you can find.  Using sabikis sizes 12 or 14 with small baits attached is the way to go.

Try areas where you might see birds working and then use your sounder to try and find the bait schools. Check out the locals to find the areas that may be working that week or give us a call at EPIC.

Tip 2
Go heavy or go home

You need to use at least 80lb braid, 100-130lb leader, and trace to try and stop these yellow tail monsters of the deep.  In winter, the Kingfish are XXOS in size. You may only hook once in the day and you don’t want to loose it.

Tip 3
Head out wide

Head out to areas well marked on charts showing under water mounts/pins that are around 60-120 meters deep.  Look for signs of bait fish and other activity on your sounder.  At this time of year you will find the fish are deeper than normal and almost on the bottom, which makes it harder to see Kingi sign.  You will also be able to catch super size snapper down deep where the kingfish are lurking.

Tip 4
Attach live bait to circle hook

Attach a live bait to your standard Kingfishing rig.  We use Shimano rods and reels like the Stella 10000 reels, Ocea jigger and Talica 12 reels on rods like the Anarchy PE8. Pass the hook (8-9/0 circle hook) through the nose of the mackerel or other bait.

Present the live bait to the same depth as the sign on the sounder using rainbow braid and count the colours to judge depth. Usually, one colour =10 meters but check as some are from the USA and one colour can be 7 meters!

Tip 5
Don’t strike

Be aware that the colder waters have slowed the metabolism of the Kingfish considerably. They will look and play with the bait presented and may not gulp it immediately. You will feel them nibbling at it but whatever you do don’t strike as you will loose the fish. Wait until the kingi has swallowed the bait and taken off with it. How will you know this?  Because the reel will be screaming and you will be struggling to hold on!

Tip 6

It is always a good idea to use jigs as well as live bait due to the fact that you will then use all the water column, top to bottom searching for the illusive green back Kingi.  Our skippers at Epic will often have two fishing at once, one on live bait and one on jig.  This gives you more of a chance on some days depending on many factors, which are too many to mention at this time.

Plus… if you have not managed to find any live bait then at least you’ll have the next weapon at your disposal.  If only jigging follow tips 2 & 3.

Tip 7
Call EPIC Adventures

If the above sounds a bit hard to manage on your own then the last tip of the day is to book a trip with EPIC Adventures. Our skippers are out there most days and can certainly show you our tried and true methods of catching these monster kingfish, snapper and trevally. The hapuku in winter will also show up in the shallower pins after coming in from the deep.  Don’t be shy of the cold and get into it. You will be pleasantly surprised.

Cheers Guys & Gals!
Roy Veal and the EPIC Team