King mackerel are a tournament favorite and the thrill of going home with the trophy is an excitement that many anglers can’t resist. Because mackerel tournaments only allow competitors to weigh their largest catch of the day, winning can come down to the difference of just a few ounces. In these highly competitive tournaments, every decision you make counts. To put yourself in the best position to win, follow these tips. And don’t forget to send us a photo of your trophy!
Choose the right boat
While king mackerel can be caught from virtually any boat, most trophy-winners are won from 23-43 foot boats with center consoles. Because competition requires some serious speed, you’ll need a boat with twin, triple, or even quad outboards that can give you a leg-up on your competitors and allow you to reach the biggest fish first.
Rig it right
For serious kingfish anglers, proper rigging is a top concern. Your rig should be able to accommodate a variety of different styles, including slow-trolling, kite fishing, drifting, and downrigger-trolling in order to match the needs dictated by the region or time of year.
Keep your live bait on hand
Live bait is a key component to kingfishing success, so you need a boat with a deck that is free from snags for your cast-netting. You’ll also need a spacious livewell to ensure that you’re able to store enough bait to comfortably last throughout the day.
Research the conditions
Before you set out on a tournament, you should do your due diligence and start studying up on what the local conditions will be like once you hit the water. Start looking at fishing reports about 5 days out from the tournament so you know what to expect.
Don’t be afraid to look for new ground
If you find a fishing spot that’s full of 15-20 pound kingfish, move on and seek a new area. This is because large fish rarely spend time around small fish, so you’re unlikely to find anything bigger in your current location.
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Adapted from: http://www.sportfishingmag.com/12-steps-to-catching-trophy-king-mackerel?src=SOC&dom=fb#page-2