Getting Chummy With Kings

From 8/17/00</font id=blue>

Over the past decade King Mackerel fishing has boomed in popularity. Each year the number of King tournaments increases and each year the techniques for catching the big ones become more refined and high tech. Thirty and fifty pound class rods and reels have been traded for 12 to 20 pound light tackle outfits. Fishermen now talk about finding areas of live bottom and fishing with live bait instead of the old practice of dragging bally-hoo all over the ocean. The importance of chumming has become the focus of many articles in recent years and it has been credited as a major factor to the great success of King Mackerel fishing.

The practice of chumming has not been immune to changes in technology either. Ten to fifteen years ago fishermen would catch some extra menhaden and throw them out in the middle of their live baits in hopes of creating more action. The real entrepreneurs would actually catch extra bait, take it home, grind it up, and freeze it in blocks. They would then bring the blocks on their next trip and hang it along side the boat when fishing. Your average King fishermen did not go to these lengths and most did not chum at all. Most fishermen thought this was a lot of work and probably did not make that much of a difference.

Here we are in the year 2000 and chumming is not the exception, but the rule. Anyone serious about catching the big fish use chumming to get the fish biting. The SKA King Mackerel circuit and the South Carolina Governors Cup King Mackerel Series have brought money to King Mackerel fishing and with money come new innovations and techniques. Many of the techniques and innovations have made chumming much easier and a lot less messy. If you go down to the weigh-in at the Fishing For Miracles Tournament this weekend, you will see just how innovative some fishermen have become. Many of the boats will be equipped with meat grinders for grinding up fresh chum. Some boats will have a plain old hand grinder while others will have