A Few Beers with Adam ‘ Mad Dog’ Royter
  |  First Published: June 2007

Adam ‘Mad Dog’ Royter is considered one of the most watchable fishing personalities. His enthusiasm for all things fishing is relentless.

Adam is a tragic fishing nut and from his work in the print media through to starring roles in Berkley’s How To… DVD series and the popular AFC TV tournament fishing show, Mad Dog has put his best foot forward. We sat down over a Fishrock Breweries’ Leather Jacket Lager after a recent trip to Weipa, to discover just what makes Adam tick.

1. Name, age, partner, kids and where’s home?

Adam Leigh Royter, 35, married to Rebecca with Madison (three and a half years) and Finnley (two months) and I live in Croydon in Victoria.

2. Your first fish?

My first fish was probably an eel in a little creek at the back of Croydon. I remember being a little red-headed crazy man taking my dad’s old rod and reel down to the creek with a few worms and catching eels all day long. I loved it. Even today I’ll amble down to the same creek (it’s concreted in now!) and just check out the little fish swimming around all the rubbish. Great memories.

3. Who are your sponsors?

Pure Fishing Australia (Berkley, Abu, Fenwick, Seven Strand, Spiderwire), Daiwa, Spotters, Columbia, EPE (outdoor gear).

4. How many days a year do you fish?

I fish around 120 a year including social and tournaments.

5. Your favourite social fishing moment?

This is an easy one. My last trip to Weipa provided endless hours of fishing highlights but the biggest thrill was landing a 70lb GT on 10lb Fireline. I was using a new Berkley Tactic rod and fishing 7” Gulps to thick schools of fish. It hit the lure down deep and straight away I knew I was in trouble as hundreds of metres of line disappeared. An hour and a half later the fish finned next to the boat and my mate Dirk Wendt tailed it. Thank god he’s so strong or the fish never would have come over the side. The rest of the day was filled with popper smashing memories and some awesome deep reef plastic fishing. We smashed ‘em and it was ridiculous (you should see the video!).

6. Your favourite fishing destination?

Weipa – where else?

7. Your favourite lures?

Berkley Gulp! 3” Fry for bream, estuary perch and flathead. Ecogear SX40 for everything that swims in an estuary and trout in the rivers. Bill’s Bugs Poppers in the biggest size for the biggest GTs in the world.

8. What would you say to someone wanting to start fishing?

Start from the bottom. Go out and mess in the creeks before jumping into something more complicated. Ask questions whenever you can and do everything from bait fishing to fly fishing and everything in between. Never think you know it all.

9. Where is fishing heading?

Fishing is headed squarely into the realms of conservation. It’s no longer good enough to kill everything you catch and it’s no longer good enough to rip hooks out of fish destined to be released. There are better ways to release fish so learn them.

The world’s oceans are not a place of destruction and plunder: they need to be properly managed if they are to keep providing us with great fishing opportunities. And this does not mean lock it up; it means actively manage it.

10. Who are the five most influential people in regard to your fishing?

Steve Starling provided a really steadying influence when I was young and almost off the rails. I read everything he wrote and just soaked it up. It made me the angler I am today. Jim Allen from Compleat Angler gave me my first job and taught me why fly fishing is such a good way to fish. He taught me about the respect of the quarry and the right way to do it. Wayne Friebe because no matter how tough things get, we always manage a laugh when fishing together and that’s what fishing is all about. Stephen Booth because he has a knack of catching stuff wherever he fishes and he just loves it. Dirk Wendt who can literally catch a fish in a bath tub (or his backyard pool when he stocks it). He never gives up and really knows what it’s all about.

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