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Thread: Hooks for halibut while soaking bait

  1. #1
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    Default Hooks for halibut while soaking bait

    What is your favorite hook for soaking bait? Style and size?

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    Member ramhunter's Avatar
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    Gamakatsu Big River hooks 12/0
    "Mountains are not fair or unfair, they are just dangerous" ~ Reinhold Messner

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    I keep a variety of circle and J hooks on the boat. I think the circles are best, but every now and then we have a guest who simply can't resist the urge to jerk to set a hook when they feel a hit on a circle. J hooks for them, and they do fine. I've found that halibut can be pretty variable in the size of baits they want, so I'll use anything from 8/0 to 16/0, depending. Same for J hooks, and I carry everything from 5/0 to 14/0 and adjust.

    I don't really care about brand, just so long as both the circles and J's are offset rather than flat. And I sharpen all of them.

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    I use 16/0 mustad 39960 hooks for 50# and bigger halibut, and 12/0 Mustad 39960 or Eagle Claw 9/0 L2004 hooks for smaller fish. We usually let go fish over 100#. These true circle hooks have been great for lip hooking fish; better than 99% for us so far.

    Erik

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    Member NeverLand's Avatar
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    I use nothing but 16/0 mustad. Seems to work for any size.

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    If you can fight the urge NOT to set that hook, then by all means, go with a circle hook. All you need to do when the fish takes it is just put a bit of upward pressure. I do it by standing up and dropping the rod tip down towards the surface of the water, and when I feel the fish has the bait just slowly lift the rod. The fish will basically set the hook itself.....

    Years ago I used to use "J" hooks all the time, but once I tried circle hooks I've never gone back. A lot less fish lost as well.

    Good Luck......
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Member rimfirematt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ramhunter View Post
    Gamakatsu Big River hooks 12/0
    Plus one on that. I've been using 10/0 though

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    Member Cap'n Ron's Avatar
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    VMC Permasteel 16/0 circle, has a conical rather than a flattened point, much sharper to begin with that others I have tried and easy to sharpen. Eagle Claw that I have tried are junk, they are very brittle and liable to chip when you try to sharpen, have also had a couple break in only 30-pounders. Place called "Captain Hook" I think (years ago...) online I bought 100 of these VMC for about $14, and still love em...

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    Member AKluvr95's Avatar
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    Ron,
    Happily using these VMC's you turned me on to before I left Idaho when I was still active duty over two years ago.
    Also bought a 100-pak.
    They stay sharp and while I thought they might be a little large, even a ping-pong paddle can get it in its mouth.
    I'd send you some rep but it says I'm rep tight for you...
    Guy

    Quote Originally Posted by Cap'n Ron View Post
    VMC Permasteel 16/0 circle, has a conical rather than a flattened point, much sharper to begin with that others I have tried and easy to sharpen. Eagle Claw that I have tried are junk, they are very brittle and liable to chip when you try to sharpen, have also had a couple break in only 30-pounders. Place called "Captain Hook" I think (years ago...) online I bought 100 of these VMC for about $14, and still love em...

  10. #10
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    We use 18 or 20's from Mustad or VMC ether one. We run huge baits so we like to have some steel sticking out! and makes for an easy release on the micros and by-catch. Good luck! hope your line is smokin off your reels this summer!!

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capt Nemo View Post
    ...we like to have some steel sticking out!
    Man, that's key with circle hooks. Good to bring it up.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeverLand View Post
    I use nothing but 16/0 mustad. Seems to work for any size.
    That's the only hook I've got on the boat. Wouldn't mind going bigger though, but we are stocked up. Wouldn't go smaller. I still have to release some 9lb halibut on those hooks. I think on my "skate" I have 24/0 hooks. Perfect for running coho heads.

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    Member NeverLand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 270ti View Post
    That's the only hook I've got on the boat. Wouldn't mind going bigger though, but we are stocked up. Wouldn't go smaller. I still have to release some 9lb halibut on those hooks. I think on my "skate" I have 24/0 hooks. Perfect for running coho heads.
    Where do you find the 24/0 hooks? I've actually caught 4# quillback on the 16/0, so I'd like to try something bigger.

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeverLand View Post
    Where do you find the 24/0 hooks? I've actually caught 4# quillback on the 16/0, so I'd like to try something bigger.
    I got them a JT Browns in Craig. I'm not so sure they are 24/0 now that I've looked online. Maybe 20/0 or 22/0. Whatever they are, A nice step up from the 16/0 hooks, and handle coho/pink heads rather well. I've caught quillbacks too on the 16's..

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    Member NeverLand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 270ti View Post
    I got them a JT Browns in Craig. I'm not so sure they are 24/0 now that I've looked online. Maybe 20/0 or 22/0. Whatever they are, A nice step up from the 16/0 hooks, and handle coho/pink heads rather well. I've caught quillbacks too on the 16's..
    Thanks, I'll give them a call. I've been real happy with the 16/0's, but want to try something a little bigger so I can see how the salmon heads work.

  16. #16
    Member Cap'n Ron's Avatar
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    You got it, Buddy! Besides the nice point, that permasteel finish/material doesn't rust. I'd buy them even bigger, if available. Not all 16/0 are equal, some look like a 10/0 and some are more like other brands 20/0. I think these VMC's are sized what you would expect for a 16/0. Now all we need is a bunch of halibut!

    I may look for some of those super large 24/0, I like to fish with salmon heads too....I don't think there is a hook large enough to keep quillbacks off, their mouth is huge

    Quote Originally Posted by AKluvr95 View Post
    Ron,
    Happily using these VMC's you turned me on to before I left Idaho when I was still active duty over two years ago.
    Also bought a 100-pak.
    They stay sharp and while I thought they might be a little large, even a ping-pong paddle can get it in its mouth.
    I'd send you some rep but it says I'm rep tight for you...
    Guy

  17. #17
    Member Blue Thunder's Avatar
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    How much do you offsit the circle hook. I have mine offsit about a 1/2" and was wondering if too much or not enough. I was out yesterday and had over 30 hits. Fish would be on for 20 seconds or so and then spit the hook. All new Mustad hooks so all were good and sharp. We did land 4 butts but not sure what was going on with all the spit hooks. Yes we were just lifting the pole and not sitting the hook with a big jurk.
    Retirement Plan - Having Fun and Still Learning

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Thunder View Post
    How much do you offsit the circle hook. I have mine offsit about a 1/2" and was wondering if too much or not enough. I was out yesterday and had over 30 hits. Fish would be on for 20 seconds or so and then spit the hook. All new Mustad hooks so all were good and sharp. We did land 4 butts but not sure what was going on with all the spit hooks. Yes we were just lifting the pole and not sitting the hook with a big jurk.
    We find that with an off set hook, sure you will get more hook ups, but the fish will pop off more , the circle hook left in line works better for us. I feel alot better if i have a giant head shaker on knowing we did not modified the hook at all, and after the first 30 seconds to a minuet of battle, the hook has fallen into to a good jaw placement and you can battle this fish all day, MOST of the time... That being said. I still have clients who bend my circle hooks out.

  19. #19
    Member Blue Thunder's Avatar
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    Thanks, if this keeps happening I will straighten the hook back to normal and is if it helps.
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