DEAN SILVESTER, BRISBANE, QLD
STYLE: I love all sorts of fishing. Over the years I’ve entered in bass, bream and barramundi tournaments. My main focus of late has been Australian bass – I’d probably say I’m a good bass-buster. BOAT My boat is an SX 180 Skeeter, an American-style bass boat. I run a 135 Evinrude E-TEC HO. Fully loaded, this outboard will push the boat to almost 100km/h.
ELECTRONICS: I’m running twin HDS 12 Gen 3 sounders, both on adjustable ram mounts so I can position them in the best possible location for the style of fishing at the time. I have one sounder positioned on the bow for when I’m fishing and the other is at the helm to aid in navigation and searching for fish. The helm runs two transducers: an 83/200 broadband TDX for running chirp and locating fish; and a 455/800 LSS TDX for viewing the sides of the boats and helping distinguish fish from structure in heavily timbered areas. The sounder on the bow is running a HDI TDX with 83/200 and 455/800 capabilities. I can also determine the exact size of the fish I’m on top off when fishing vertically.
SCREENSHOT: My coolest screenshot is one of a bass I hooked while slow- rolling vertical plastics. In the screenshot you can see a big school of bass. Because they’re marking as long lines, it means they’re stationary, as is the boat on top of them – basically they’re shut down. You have to tease these fish to get a bite and in the screenshot you can see my lure rise and fall from the bottom. As the lure almost reaches the bottom you can see a bass take interest and follow it down. Once the lure starts to rise again, the fish is back on it – you can see it sit right on the lure moments before hook-up.
DEAN’S TOP TIP: Spend as much time as possible interpreting what’s going on beneath your boat. It doesn’t matter what settings or colour palettes you like to utilise as long as you can understand what the fish you’re looking at are doing. Understanding fish behaviour on your sounder will save a lot of time when trying to catch them. The only way to really do this is to spend as much time as possible observing the screen.