Jewie 101 with Caino

This month I would like to talk about hunting down that elusive jewie or (jewfish) that people spend countless hours, days, months, years trying to catch, So lets see if I can help you all with getting you on your way to catching that jewie of a lifetime.

Where to look and what bait to use.

The author with a nice daytime caught jewie.

The author with a nice daytime caught jewie.

Most people will go out to a spot with all the wrong gear and ideas on how to catch these monster fish they hear about fishos catching them in the area go and grab some service station bait like pilchards, prawns and worms use heavy gear and throw a million miles out to sea and sit there for countless sessions not catching a thing. So where I like to frequent is rock walls, break walls and beach to catch my jewie but my favorite has to be break walls & rocks with deep gutters or ledges of about the 10m range of depth. It is easy to spot the depth without using a sounder look for the darker blue areas that’s where polarised sunglasses comes in handy too.

Safety First

Big bream like this are always a possibility as well ...not bad bycatch.

Big bream like this are always a possibility as well …not bad bycatch.

These are great places to catch jewie but can also be deadly so preparation and safety is a must its horrible the amount of lives lost from this style of fishing that could all be avoided by just being prepared. travel light don’t take the house with you buy yourself a PFD (personal floatation device) or self inflating PFD is the best wear proper footwear with rock cleats or spikes or at least with non slip soles and HI VIS clothes. Plus it’s always a good idea to take 5 minutes to survey the area find a safe spot to swim to if you did fall in the water so many people try to swim back to the rocks and get smashed in the side of them or sucked under and drown.

Bait & Tackle

Jewie tackle, set up and ready for action.

Jewie tackle, set up and ready for action.

With all that in mind lets start talking bait and tackle I like to use a 12-13ft surf rod about 10/15kg with a 8000/10000 reel I use 20-30lb mainline and leader I use a standard live bait rig with a 7/0 to 8/0 live bait hook or circle hooks with a clip on sinker now you can go heavier on the leader but I like to fish light unless the terrain doesn’t allow it. The other option is using lures this can be a lot harder if you haven’t consistently caught other predatory species before and honed your techniques but if you have then lets dispel a couple of myths ‘bigger is not always better’.


Try using medium size paddle tail, shrimp, or curl tail soft plastics yes you occasionally catch jewie on larger plastics but majority will take a smaller plastic any day and match the hatch look around at the baitfish in the area I prefer a yellowtail or yakka colour or mullet try to stick with natural colours and that same myth as before you don’t need a 100 pound line most of the time im using 15 and 30 lb line lighter means more bites and hook ups and it is much more fun landing them.

Yakka Time

Two jewies caught within quick succession of each other.

Two jewies caught within quick succession of each other.

The best bait is fresh and live I like to use yellowtail (yakkas), tailor or beach worms there is plenty of ways to catch fresh bait you just have to know where to look and that’s the hardest part with hardly anyone giving away their secret honey holes, techniques and gear how are you meant to learn, so try and find some weed beds or edges of rock walls. You can catch yakkas on bait jigs or even bread or small bits of pilchard on a tiny hook and sinker don’t be scared to jump on google maps check out the area before you go try and find some darker patches in the water and once you catch a few livies invest in a small aerator nothing worse than spending all this time catching live bait to die in 5 minutes I usually pin the hook through the nose of the livie or the top quarter of the fish near the spine but be careful not to go through the spine of the fish. Jewie are a predatory fish that run up and down hugging the rock walls and edges of gutters looking for their next meal so you don’t have to throw your livie out a million miles out to sea just 10-15 meters is plenty.

Run Out Tide

Another nice fish - a smaller specimens but great catch none the less.

Australian Salmon are a possible by catch when targeting jewies from a rick wall like this.

I like to target jewie on the run out tide early mornings or late afternoons I have caught them on the run in but majority have been run out. One of my great mates Scott Mcintyre and Jewie legend if there is a jewie around you can bet your house that he will catch it, this style of fishing is his most preferred way to fish his last jewie caught only last week from Stockton break wall in New South Wales went 120cm and 17kg. This was hooked using the same technique that I discussed above.

Log Your Catches

Some of the most hard core jewie fishos will keep a journal and write down every bit of detail they can from moon phase, time of tide weather, water temp etc. etc. and repeat the next season trying to gather a more detailed look on movements of the fish. Scott even sends the frame of the fish away for research to be able to help with conservation of the species and gives him a better understanding of the age of the fish and lots more I also have a gun beach fisho Paul Yates its not unheard of him catching 5 to 10 jewie in one session keeping 1 fish for a feed and letting the rest go to fight another day which is a great philosophy to have limit your kill not kill your limit. He uses the same techniques as us, but only using beach worms fishing the edges of gutters So in closing it pays to do research on the area be safe I like to catch a fish but no fish is worth dying for we all want you home safe and fresh is best spend the time getting bait.
‘I hope this helps steer you in the right direction to landing the elusive jewie,’ Caino 2MF

About Caine Goward

I started fishing at a very young age and was taught by my grandfather Peter (pop) Green. I have many memories of spending countless hours on the beach with my pop and brother Jai digging for pippies and arguing with my brother about who caught the biggest fish. These mornings on the beach watching the sunrise over the water and spending time with loved ones is what ignited my passion for fishin. Ever since then i have tried to learn every thing I can about fishin reading books and spending every chance i can on the water. But there was a snag in the water with no one willing to help and guide me in all styles and techniques of fishing I was stuck. That is until I met a bloke who fished in the ABT circuit he took me under his wing and showed me everything from salt to fresh, spin to fly, boat and land to kayak. I learnt alot from this man and spurred me on to fish and share my learning and knowledge. I moved home After I finished in the Army to be with my family I designed a fishing site on facebook to start showing people all the secrets the myths and generally have a laugh and get back to enjoying what fishing meant to me. I have fished plenty of boat and kayak tournaments through my time but my main specialty is kayak bream and bass fishing.


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