Adventurous anglers are constantly pushing the limits of what you can target from a kayak. That includes fishing for giant squid, as demonstrated by Nev Hayes, an avid kayak fisherman and YouTuber from the Gippsland region of Victoria, Australia. Hayes braved a cold and blustery winter morning in the southern hemisphere to land an “absolute monster” squid, setting an impressive new personal best in the process.
How to Kayak Fish for Giant Squid
Hayes uses a Shimano Sephia BB S86M rod and Sephia BB C3000S reel specially designed for squidding—or “Eging,” from the Japanese egi squid lure. He sets up shop in about 10–15 feet of clear water from the last of the incoming tide. Hayes typically sticks to two strategies for kayak squid fishing: float fishing with silver whiting bait, and casting a size 3.0 squid jig. “Put big, long casts out there so you can cover ground and then work that jig back towards the kayak,” he advises. “Let that jig sink for about five to eight seconds and then just give it a few hops.”
Soon enough, Hayes gets a hit on the jig—or does he? “I thought that was a snag…literally hooked the bottom, that’s what I thought. And then it started moving.” He slowly reels in the big squid to avoid tearing a tentacle, holding the spool and gently lifting it toward the surface. When the giant is finally within reach Hayes can hardly fit it in his fishing net.
“I’ve never seen a squid that big.”
The monster squid sports a 48-centimeter hood, making it the largest of Hayes’ many catches. “This one’s a tank, a winter giant. This thing is so, so heavy,” he crows. Hayes hauls in another “absolutely cracking squid” on the whiting bait before the day is done. “That’s why I love squid fishing and fishing in general,” he says. “You just never know.”
For plenty more videos of kayak squid fishing, estuary fishing and more, check out the Nev’s Fishing YouTube channel.