Mick from Pickles Fishing & Outdoors in Eden shares the secret of his simple but deadly Slurpee straw stiff-hook rig. Mick is the frugal type. He lives by the old creed — “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Which is kind of ironic considering he’s also proprietor of tackle shop Pickles Fishing & Outdoors in Eden, NSW. He’s been game fishing most of his life and is well hooked in to the commercial and rec fisho community of the South Coast. In his new column, Mick’s Tricks, he shares a few simple and effective techniques for getting connected. First up is his Slurpee straw stiff-hook rig.



Most of us start our game-fishing careers trolling lures for marlin. This is, in fact, probably the hardest way to catch them, fly fishing aside. I’ve seen all kinds of rigs, but undoubtedly this has proved to be the simplest and deadliest single-hook rig for running skirts. The key is to stiffen up the rig so it stays behind the head of the lure, avoiding entanglement. The straw also acts as a line guard where you get the most wear and tear (image 2), and allows you to fish lighter leaders. You can run the same rig on 500lb leaders and 12-inch lures!



• Slurpee straw
• 3 crimps
• Length of line
• Lure
• Hook to suit lure head


1. KIT: Tools for the job 



2. POST-FIGHT: Straw intact



3. HOOK: Gape wider than head 


Note: Ensure the hook gape is wider than the diameter of the lure head — see image 3.



1. Slide two crimps on the leader.



2. Feed the leader through the eye of the hook (where it’s solid).



3. Wrap three times around the shank of the hook and feed back through the opposite side of the eye from where you originally entered. Slide crimp down and pull the loop up tight, then crimp.



4. Adjust the second crimp to the length of the lure. Twist the line 3 times, then crimp it off.



5. Hook point should be just touching the skirt



6. Cut straw to length then slide straw on, then slide lure on.



Finally, tie a Flemish eye to other end of the leader. With this set-up, if the bottom crimp fails, you’re saved by the crimp above it. If the top crimp on the Flemish eye fails, the knot simply pulls tight. This happens all too often.



Captain’s note: We trialled Mick’s Slurpee straw stiff rig and came up 1.1.1. After inspection we noted the straw was badly scuffed but intact (see image 2). The twisted leader underneath was in perfect condition, however the rest of the leader was stretched and stiff, proving the Slurpee straw stiff-hook rig a winner.