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Thread: Trolling without downriggers

  1. #1
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Question Trolling without downriggers

    Though I've been fortunate enough to catch plenty of saltwater silvers and pinks over the years by various means, I've never pursued kings in the salt. I'm renting a boat in Homer on Monday for 10 hours. Given the recent halibut reports, I doubt it will take us that long to pull a few halibut aboard, so we're thinking of trying for some kings along the bluffs as well. I don't think the boat has downriggers, though, so I'm looking for some advice on how to troll for kings without them.

    I've got some Deep Six divers, some flashers and some various spoons, but I'm not really sure how well that will work. Any advice for me? Is there something else I should be considering? Would it be better to find some fish and just jig/mooch for the kings instead? Thanks in advance!

    -Brian

  2. #2
    Member SoggyMountain's Avatar
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    Fish like different things at different times... and in different places. But, I personally don't like using downriggers. I'm sure I'll receive the full load of blasts here for this, but, I like banana weights when I troll.

    When your pole is under the weight of a cannon ball, you really can't monitor the tip's sensitivity. Not to the degree of a standard weight anyway.

    Based on the tip of my pole, I know when my lure is swimming properly, is fouled, we're moving too slow/fast, anything is remotely interested in a snack.

    I rarely use a flasher for kings. All of this to say, were I the one fishing Homer, I'd try my techniques until someone showed me something better there and then.

    12 oz. weight, dragging a rolling herring.... 1.5 - 1.8 knotts. If someone else is boating fish (not just one), then make the transition. If you boat fish, they should come over to the dark side. If no one boats a fish, drop for halibut.

  3. #3

    Default trolling

    Brian,

    A typical setup for no-downriggers is to use inline banana weights.

    I've been using between 1.5 and 2 oz weights with a 40" +/- leader, and then between 14 and 20 pulls on the rod (1 pull = from reel to first eye). Most of the charters are fishing in 35 to 40 feet of water, but don't be afraid to go in close... 10 feet. You definitely want to stay off the bottom to avoid the residents (cod, irish lords, etc) that love your bait but don't contribute to the fish box.

    Good luck,

  4. #4
    Member fishmaster's Avatar
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    I use downriggers if I have to fish deep. We caught 3 kings out of whitter last summer. Two were on the downriggers fishing at 60 to 90 feet. The biggest one (38lbs) was caught using a 12 oz banana weight and a plug cut herring at 25 pulls (no downrigger). I have done best for kings trolling very slowly or mooching or a combination of both. I have also done better not using a flasher. If you can find bait ball, work around the outside of it.
    Good luck and good fishing.

  5. #5
    Member SoggyMountain's Avatar
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    Default AND??

    How'd that trip turn out Brian? I have been silently waiting for your report, but sometimes you can only wait so long.

    Did you fish? How long? What techniques? And, what ended up in the boat?

  6. #6
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Default Oops!

    Well, I completely forgot to post a "report", as there is sadly nothing to report on. The boat we were renting had motor problems on the way back into the harbor on the night before our trip, so we had to reschedule. Caught some nice rainbows on the Kenai instead, and then a couple of days later some reds on the Russian, but I sure was hoping to get after some kings in Homer. I know that there are feeder kings around there year-round, but it's better right now with migrating kings in the mix, right? We'll be heading down there again around the first few days of July and again during the 3rd week. Hopefully I'll be able to share a real report at that point.

  7. #7
    Member SoggyMountain's Avatar
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    I've never king fished out of Homer. Halibut only. But, I think you're right. Just like here in Juneau.... feeders are year round, and as the spawners pass through, fish to rod hours dramitcally decrease.

    Sometimes it's time over target, and sometimes there's more targets for your time!

  8. #8
    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Default Who needs a downrigger?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    I don't think the boat has downriggers, though, so I'm looking for some advice on how to troll for kings without them.

    This is the best diver I have come across:





    http://www.oldsaltytackle.com/

    Click on the link above and then once inside, click on PLANERS.

    These things really get the job done....

    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

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