King mackerel are suckers for hard-plastic lures like Yo-Zuri’s Crystal Minnow, and several big advantages exist for trolling lures instead of live baits.

• You don’t have to waste valuable fishing time trying to catch bait in a cast net or on a Sabiki rig.

• Lures don’t require livewells with pumps and switches that can malfunction at the worst times. 

• They are much easier to troll in rough seas without tangling the lines. 

• An angler can pick different colors in an instant. 

On the other hand, cost is a downside. Some of these hard-plastic lures cost S20 each, and guide Bruce Trujillo counts on losing at least one or two on each trip, with barracuda the culprit in most of the cut-offs.

 The use of heavy, wire leaders can impair lure action, so he uses heavy monofilament leaders in most cases. He may use a short wire leader if barracuda are snipping off his lures, but most of the time, he moves on to the next spot.