Kayak Fishing Adventures on Big Waterís Edge   Kayak Fishing Mothership trips aboard Islander

Go Back   Kayak Fishing Adventures on Big Waterís Edge > Kayak Fishing Forum - Message Board > Kayak Fishing Reports

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-27-2018, 10:23 AM   #1
Billy V
Senior Member
 
Billy V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bay Ho
Posts: 1,380
Halibut addiction

Over the last month I have been fishing halibut 2 or 3 times a week. I have been experimenting with various techniques and leader size with some surprising results....

I mostly use a 3 way swivel with 4 ft floro 25 lb. leader to a single 2/0 or 3/0 hook - and the line to the sinker at 2 or 2 1/2 ft long. This works well fished in freespool feeling for bites.

But I have had several bites on dropper loop rigs fishing for yellows.
3 ft long 40 lb leader to the 3 way swivel, with a 5 ft. long drop to the torpedo sinker.

What gives? Heavier line and shorter leader seems to get lots of attention higher up from the bottom ...
------------------
I have had good success fishing 5 ft long 20 lb. fluro leader and single hook to the 3 way swivel, with a 3 ft. drop to the torpedo sinker.

What are you Halibut gurus using that produce best?
__________________
Billy V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 11:32 AM   #2
Mr. NiceGuy
Manic for Life
 
Mr. NiceGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: San Diego
Posts: 780
Are you talking about San Diego Bay or out in the ocean?

My main line remains at 65# Power Pro braid. In SD Bay I use 25# leader. In the ocean I use 40#. I like the quality of Blackwater Shock Leader.

If I'm using a light rig in shallow water, I lean toward a Carolina rig with a 2oz sliding egg weight. Over 40' or in stronger currents, I use a 3-way. For 3-ways, I make a comfortable length leader for my 7' pole so I can hook my hook near the reel and not pull the 3-way swivel into the top eye at the end of my pole. That usually starts around 4'-5' and shortens down to 3'-4' as I change hooks or other tackle at the terminal end. My weight hangs off a surgeons loop for easy weight changes, and easy weight removal when my pole is stowed. It's usually 8-12" in length from the 3-way, and I use leftover 15# mono for my weight line so it's easier to break off if it gets stuck. I tend to use 6-8oz torpedos in the ocean, depending on current. If I'm dragging the bottom over 125' or in a strong current, I might go higher to keep my weight easily on the bottom, maybe 16oz

Personally, I don't think the ratio of lengths of leader vs weight line matter as much as freedom of movement on the leader and keeping the weight dragging on the bottom.

In the ocean, I prefer the biggest mackerels I can get. In the bay I would prefer using anchovies from the bait barge over artificials. I carry some other things as backup if I can't get live bait.

I don't know if this is right or wrong, but it's typical for me kayak fishing around San Diego.
__________________
Another ho-hum day in Paradise

Last edited by Mr. NiceGuy; 11-27-2018 at 04:30 PM.
Mr. NiceGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 12:14 PM   #3
jruiz
Large Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Fontana, CA
Posts: 824
Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy V View Post
Over the last month I have been fishing halibut 2 or 3 times a week. I have been experimenting with various techniques and leader size with some surprising results....

I mostly use a 3 way swivel with 4 ft floro 25 lb. leader to a single 2/0 or 3/0 hook - and the line to the sinker at 2 or 2 1/2 ft long. This works well fished in freespool feeling for bites.

But I have had several bites on dropper loop rigs fishing for yellows.
3 ft long 40 lb leader to the 3 way swivel, with a 5 ft. long drop to the torpedo sinker.

What gives? Heavier line and shorter leader seems to get lots of attention higher up from the bottom ...
------------------
I have had good success fishing 5 ft long 20 lb. fluro leader and single hook to the 3 way swivel, with a 3 ft. drop to the torpedo sinker.

What are you Halibut gurus using that produce best?
I'm confused with your use of a 3-way swivel in a dropper loop. Do you mean a barrel swivel?
jruiz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 02:58 PM   #4
Iceman
Administrator
 
Iceman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: 1-2 miles off the point
Posts: 6,674
one thing is for certain with halibut is nothing is for certain
__________________
Iceman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 05:08 PM   #5
sdfisher
Senior Member
 
sdfisher's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: San Diego
Posts: 179
Ditto to what the Iceman says!
sdfisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 05:17 PM   #6
Mr. NiceGuy
Manic for Life
 
Mr. NiceGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: San Diego
Posts: 780
QUESTION TO EVERYONE: If you don't have live bait, what are your favorite backups for targeting halibut?

I've tried Luckycraft's, hard plastic artificial trouts, soft plastic swim baits, curly tails, chrome diamond jigs, big weighted plastic glowing rubber squids with LED lights, hoochie skirts, and random other things. I don't have any favorite backups to live bait.

For me, halibut can be a by-catch when not expected. When targeting halibut in SD Bay, it's not so easy to avoid collateral damage to bass that suck down the trap hook
__________________
Another ho-hum day in Paradise

Last edited by Mr. NiceGuy; 11-27-2018 at 05:22 PM.
Mr. NiceGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 05:42 PM   #7
rossman
Marginally Irrelevant
 
rossman's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Bahia Asuncion
Posts: 925
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. NiceGuy View Post
QUESTION TO EVERYONE: If you don't have live bait, what are your favorite backups for targeting halibut?

I've tried Luckycraft's, hard plastic artificial trouts, soft plastic swim baits, curly tails, chrome diamond jigs, big weighted plastic glowing rubber squids with LED lights, hoochie skirts, and random other things. I don't have any favorite backups to live bait.

For me, halibut can be a by-catch when not expected. When targeting halibut in SD Bay, it's not so easy to avoid collateral damage to bass that suck down the trap hook
Gulp Saltwater Curly Tailed grub. Nuclear Chicken. Boom!
__________________
"When beholding the tranquil beauty and brilliancy of the oceanís skin, one forgets the tiger heart that pants beneath it; and would not willingly remember that this velvet paw but conceals a remorseless fang. "
ó Herman Melville

Y'all come see me now, hear!
rossman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 06:37 PM   #8
YakDout
Brandon
 
YakDout's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: San Diego
Posts: 2,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. NiceGuy View Post
QUESTION TO EVERYONE: If you don't have live bait, what are your favorite backups for targeting halibut?

I've tried Luckycraft's, hard plastic artificial trouts, soft plastic swim baits, curly tails, chrome diamond jigs, big weighted plastic glowing rubber squids with LED lights, hoochie skirts, and random other things. I don't have any favorite backups to live bait.

For me, halibut can be a by-catch when not expected. When targeting halibut in SD Bay, it's not so easy to avoid collateral damage to bass that suck down the trap hook


For artificial I like a drop shot with a small torpedo weight. 1-2 oz and a 4Ē MC slug. I use a Vmc inline hook and I tie two separate knots to the eye of the hook instead of the Palomar knot with a long tag for your weight. The inline hook with two knots keeps the bait from rolling as opposed to the palomar knot where you have the plastic rolling on the side and looking un natural. This is especially successful in the surf and I do very well with it. My go to color for halibut is white with a second choice in a smelt pattern. The action on this setup is incredible with even a little current.

I think the biggest key to halibut fishing is finding their depth. If Iím on my yak, in open ocean, ill start shallow because itís a closer paddle, and make multiple drifts no longer than 30 minutes at that depth then work my way deeper about 20-40 feet at a time. Learning the behavior and knowing when they come shallow to spawn is an invaluable lesson.
YakDout is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 07:24 PM   #9
Mr. NiceGuy
Manic for Life
 
Mr. NiceGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: San Diego
Posts: 780
Quote:
Originally Posted by rossman View Post
Gulp Saltwater Curly Tailed grub. Nuclear Chicken. Boom!

Thanks! I'll try. Is this what you mean?

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1


  • Berkley Gulp grub saltwater baits are made from natural ingredients that release 400 times more scent than plastic baits
  • Wide swimming tail for greater action and visibility
  • This Gulp grub bait are tough and durable, formulated especially for ocean gamefish
  • Available in nuclear chicken color
  • Measures 6-inch length and package contains 4 count
$5.59, free shipping, Amazon Prime


__________________
Another ho-hum day in Paradise
Mr. NiceGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 07:29 PM   #10
Billy V
Senior Member
 
Billy V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bay Ho
Posts: 1,380
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. NiceGuy View Post
Are you talking about San Diego Bay or out in the ocean?

My main line remains at 65# Power Pro braid. In SD Bay I use 25# leader. In the ocean I use 40#. I like the quality of Blackwater Shock Leader.

If I'm using a light rig in shallow water, I lean toward a Carolina rig with a 2oz sliding egg weight. Over 40' or in stronger currents, I use a 3-way. For 3-ways, I make a comfortable length leader for my 7' pole so I can hook my hook near the reel and not pull the 3-way swivel into the top eye at the end of my pole. That usually starts around 4'-5' and shortens down to 3'-4' as I change hooks or other tackle at the terminal end. My weight hangs off a surgeons loop for easy weight changes, and easy weight removal when my pole is stowed. It's usually 8-12" in length from the 3-way, and I use leftover 15# mono for my weight line so it's easier to break off if it gets stuck. I tend to use 6-8oz torpedos in the ocean, depending on current. If I'm dragging the bottom over 125' or in a strong current, I might go higher to keep my weight easily on the bottom, maybe 16oz

Personally, I don't think the ratio of lengths of leader vs weight line matter as much as freedom of movement on the leader and keeping the weight dragging on the bottom.

In the ocean, I prefer the biggest mackerels I can get. In the bay I would prefer using anchovies from the bait barge over artificials. I carry some other things as backup if I can't get live bait.

I don't know if this is right or wrong, but it's typical for me kayak fishing around San Diego.
Ocean fishing - the last month I have been fish Mission Beach area. From S. La Jolla to the Mission Bay Jetty.
- I had an ok month - I had a 6 fish day with 3 being keepers, a personal best.
8 fish total for November so far.
__________________
Billy V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 07:32 PM   #11
Billy V
Senior Member
 
Billy V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bay Ho
Posts: 1,380
Quote:
Originally Posted by jruiz View Post
I'm confused with your use of a 3-way swivel in a dropper loop. Do you mean a barrel swivel?
No, not a barrel.

A 3 way swivel is how I tie my dropper loops.
https://www.spro.com/ProductDetails....ode=STWB%2DALL
__________________
Billy V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 07:39 PM   #12
Billy V
Senior Member
 
Billy V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bay Ho
Posts: 1,380
Quote:
Originally Posted by YakDout View Post
I think the biggest key to halibut fishing is finding their depth. If Iím on my yak, in open ocean, ill start shallow because itís a closer paddle, and make multiple drifts no longer than 30 minutes at that depth then work my way deeper about 20-40 feet at a time. Learning the behavior and knowing when they come shallow to spawn is an invaluable lesson.
I agree - once I find a depth that draws a bite I mark it, and repeat the drift over that area several times.

I will tell you I have no problem fishing 20 lb line, I will also put out a 15 lb rig to "test an area"
- If there is a fish in the area - you would think 15 lb test will coax her to bite.
__________________
Billy V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 07:50 PM   #13
seck66
Junior
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: San Diego, on a good day west of shore
Posts: 9
It may be splitting hairs, but if I donít have any live bait, I will use one of my dead bait that either died in the bait well or was molested in a hookup that got away. Iíve had some reasonable success with dead greenbacks.

A point from earlier in this thread about setups...

I donít have any experience with bay fishing so my logic is as follows. If Iím flylining or slow trolling live bait, Iím a huge fan of fluorocarbon as your bait is somewhere ~near the surface and you get the added invisibility. However, if Iím fishing the bottom in 80+ feet of water, I donít believe it makes any difference at that depth. Further, if you hook something bigger on the bottom (such as a halibut) with a large live bait, I want the added stretch of mono...

In either case, Iíve been using 40lb leaders. Too many times Iíve had my heart broken because my leader was bitten through or snapped...
seck66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 07:51 PM   #14
GregAndrew
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 2,271
Billy, Contrary to a lot of published material, Halibut will travel high and far for a bait making the right moves. You can fish pretty high off the bottom for Halibut if the visibility is good. Unfortunately most people do not know when the visibility is good near the bottom. Even when it looks great at the surface, it is probably not so good on the bottom. Of course the opposite can also be true . I have seen Red Tide days, where the bottom was very clear. Most harbors are going to be pretty low visibility nearly all of the time.

Most baits are going to take full advantage of both the sinker and hook leaders too. They use most of the length to stay above the bottom. Generally, longer hook leaders should be combined with shorter sinker leaders. Keeping your bait in the "Zone" means keeping it where a target fish is likely to see your actively struggling bait. And that is not just the fish directly below it, but the ones off to the sides. The lower you keep it, the better ground coverage you get on the average day. Although the tradeoff is that you pick up a lot more snags and debris that way.


Overall, I would guesstimate the average visibility of our inshore fishing here in SoCal to be about 5-6'. Generally, the deeper you go (and further from surf zone), the better the visibility. Obviously other factors will effect the visibility like runoff, current, surge etc. The later (in the morning) you go, the better the light you will get reflecting off your bait (extending your range). Even though you can catch the fish away from the bottom, most anglers are going to bet on the conditions favoring lower presentation.


All that being said, the visibility has been pretty darn good all over for several weeks now And a low presentation can be a bad thing for some of the nicer fish to bycatch
GregAndrew is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 08:08 PM   #15
Billy V
Senior Member
 
Billy V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bay Ho
Posts: 1,380
Thanks Greg.
All my fish were in 90 and 100 ft of water this month off Mission.

- There is something else I might mention... I ran into some bycatch...eating macks.
Everything you need to know is in this pic. I'm sure there is more in La Jolla proper.
__________________

Last edited by Billy V; 11-27-2018 at 08:31 PM.
Billy V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-27-2018, 11:58 PM   #16
Ohiostreetz
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 60
Ohiostreetz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2018, 09:21 AM   #17
Iceman
Administrator
 
Iceman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: 1-2 miles off the point
Posts: 6,674
Quote:
Gulp Saltwater Curly Tailed grub. Nuclear Chicken. Boom!

I have witnessed Ross get a few of those
__________________
Iceman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2018, 10:14 AM   #18
bender0240
Senior Member
 
bender0240's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 113
Billy, out of curiosity, what do you see as the advantage of a 3-way swivel rig over a sliding rig like a Carolina or Fish Finder Rig?

It would seem to me the sliding rig would give more sensitivity to the bite and would let the bait swim a little more freely?
bender0240 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2018, 11:35 AM   #19
DanaYakAngler
Member
 
DanaYakAngler's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: RSM, Ca.
Posts: 62
I have been using a 3 way swivel with a trap set up lately. Seems 90% of the time the halibut are caught on the trap treble hook. So I see the importance, however it can be a bit much to deal with two hooks sometimes. I was wondering how many of you guys belly hook by the anal fin for the short strikes so common with halibut?

I like the Idea of trying the carolina rig when targeting buts.
DanaYakAngler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2018, 12:20 PM   #20
Billy V
Senior Member
 
Billy V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bay Ho
Posts: 1,380
Quote:
Originally Posted by bender0240 View Post
Billy, out of curiosity, what do you see as the advantage of a 3-way swivel rig over a sliding rig like a Carolina or Fish Finder Rig?

It would seem to me the sliding rig would give more sensitivity to the bite and would let the bait swim a little more freely?
It keeps the grass and other stuff off the leader line with the hook -
- and I believe it gives halibut a better chance to see your bait because it elevated slightly higher.

Most of the time I fish with the reel in freespool with my thumb on the spool feeling for a bite. If I feel that characteristic (thump thump) I will click it into gear and try to set the hook. (I don't let them run, or wait to eat it like I would fish for yellowtail.)

- over the years I have noticed big/or medium big halibut either swallow the bait completely on the strike, Or bite it, then swallow it down.
- I have noticed they have kind of a distinct "thump thump" to their bite.
Mostly - LOL as Iceman says - there are "no guarantees"

If I use a light torpedo sinker, like a 4oz or maximum 6oz, I can feel that thump almost every time - and click over the gear lever on the (saltist) and try to set a hook.

- Even if I get Bass Bit - or hook a Calico - it would be time to change a bait anyway! So no harm, no foul.
-------------------
That's just one way I like to fish for them (rod in hand) if on the boat.
You have a little more luxury to set out a few different rigs at the same time, for obvious reasons.
- Like a sliding (adjustable) Octopus J hook (tied with a nail knot) (not a snell)- then direct tied to a 3x strong mustad treble (matching the bait size).
- There are other old school rigs I like to use too.

- The kayak is a little different, sometimes you need those hands to paddle...
Even with my Hobie, I would try to lay the rod across my lap while peddling/steering/drifting - to watch and feel for that thump.
-------------------------
- The First fish I ever caught in La Jolla, (besides bait) was a 28.5 lb Halibut, and it handed me my ass!

I did it all wrong and gaffed it in the loin - then it went Nuts and broke the promar adjustable gaff into 2 pieces (there is rope inside of it)so it holds together.

As my friends laughed their asses off.....and were snapping embarrassing pictures - they threw me another gaff which I quickly use to stick the fish....again.
- and now had 2 gaffs stuck into this crazy fish (kicking my ass)
Both hands full - and 2 googans laughing their ass off.

I've been addicted ever since. - Sorry for the BIG PIC - I don't know how to resize it!
__________________

Last edited by Billy V; 11-28-2018 at 12:34 PM.
Billy V is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:18 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2002 Big Water's Edge. All rights reserved.