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How to catch big GTs on poppers
  |  First Published: June 2007



A monstrous GT smashing bait from the surface is an exciting thing to see.

The amazing Whitsundays, with its countless rocky points, coral bommies and chunky, bustling bait schools provide many good areas to cast big poppers for big GT.

Once you see a GT of over 30kg colliding with baitfish, you see just how strong they are – these are our favourite fish in the sea! In this article, we’ll give you all the info you need to go out there and target these brutes of the Whitsundays.

One outfit

You will only need one outfit for this task. Many professional GT fishing guides say that a quality rod and reel will save you big money. If you are keen on getting into big GT on poppers, a 15kg rod (plus spin rod), 8000 + size reel and a 40lb + braid (fins braid being a good option) will serve you well. Of course, you can use this outfit for a stack of other saltwater fishing too. Trolling for large pelagics, casting to surface busting tuna and deepwater bait fishing all work well with this rod.

What to Toss?

Large cup-face poppers are very effective. The Halco Haymaker is one of the best poppers for exciting big GT out from the blue. Our most popular technique is casting big Haymakers over large bommies and working them back hard. The only things you need to change are the hooks and the split rings. Using ultra-strong Owners trebles and split rings will make sure you don’t loose the fish of a lifetime.

Where do I cast poppers?

Large rocky points and deepwater bommies are good popping areas. Other good areas to lob a big popper are around shallow reef points when the tide is low and when all of the bait has moved off the flats.

Low light is productive, but you can still catch big GT on poppers in the middle of the day in the same areas.

Schools of bait that are showering or bubbling in these areas are a sure sign of monster trevally in the vicinity. Cast as far as you can over the area, then jerk the rod tip as hard as possible to make the large popper look like a massive baitfish on the surface. Make it look crazy but giving it huge pops. It’s quite tiring after a while, so make sure your fishing the right areas.

Places like Gumbrell Island, Olden Island and all around Grassy Island have nice areas for big Trevor’s. The shallow reef point at Gumbrell is a very interesting area.

They key to catching them is persistence. Keep moving around likely spots until you get struck. Big GT fishing with popper is an active sport – it’s fun, challenging and exciting and we love it.

The Halco Haymaker is a productive popper for big GTs.

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