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Thread: To shallow???

  1. #1
    Charterboat Operator Abel's Avatar
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    Default To shallow???

    Yup, those kings will get in tight, but bumping the outdrive on a rockpile, ouch!!!!! Scouted a new area, dropped the first fish, boated the second. Saw a real shallow spot at the last second, threw her in neutral, pulled the riggers to the surface and drifted across, felt the outdrive bump twice before I could get it up. All is good tho and nothing but a little scratch in the paint job. Needless to say, I marked that rockpile on the plotter.
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    Life's to short for an ugly boat

    Blaze N Abel Charters
    Kodiak, AK
    www.alaska-fish.com
    https://www.facebook.com/BlazeNAbelCharters/?fref=ts

  2. #2

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    Great job! Both on the fish and saving the outdrive. I cringed when I saw the title of your thread.

    I'm starting to think the kings are getting really sick of sharing water with the cod and pollack. We were only out 3 hours yesterday, working bait layers, chasing bird wrecks and throwing jigs up into the shallows with no trolling. Unbelievable numbers of pollack and cod on the wrecks and bait layers, but the only kings came on casts up among the rocks in the shallows. Olds/American fish are definitely starting to show up.

  3. #3
    Member
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    BrownBear, care to share your technique for casting salmon jigs? How fast on the retrieve? how far do you dip your rod tip to give the jig flutter? Or do you just reel the jig straight in?

  4. #4

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    We rarely catch them on a straight retrieve. Best is to cast, tighten the line quick (lots of strikes on that first sink), then raise the rod tip to about 45 degrees (leave some room for hook sets) in a smooth lift, not too fast or too slow. Lower the rod tip slowly, reeling just fast enough to keep the line tight as the jig flutters down a ways, then repeat. About 90% of our hits come on the flutter down. We vary the amount of "flutter down" time based on water depth and how far you want the jig to drop. Sometimes when the rod is back down we just pause a few seconds with no reeling and no rod lift to allow the jig to keep on fluttering. Long as it's not too shallow, of course.

    We started out using darts, but have pretty much given up on them for shallow work even if we like them for deep jigging. They sink too fast and don't have enough flutter for casting and flat retrieves. This year we've gotten real hooked on Luhr Jensen Crippled Herring, Do-It Flutter jigs, and plastic crank baits from Storm and similar. We have rod storage for 15 rods on the boat and tend to keep rods rigged with Crip Herring/Flutters, darts and plastics, switching between them as we move from place to place, often only 100' apart.

    We crossed paths with Abel the other day while we were working a deeper bait layer using darts on spinning rods for super-fast sinks through the cod and pollack, hoping for kings just below. No kings on that layer, and I think Abel and his crew got bored watching us land pollack! Moved close to shore right after he left, switched to Crip Herring and picked up one king and lost another tight against the edge of a kelp bed. This stuff is killer for silvers later in the fall, too.

    Keep moving, keep experimenting with tackle and retrieve, and dodge those danged cod and pollack! It's a whole lot like bass or muskie fishing.

  5. #5
    Charterboat Operator Abel's Avatar
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    Ya, im thinking of picking up a smaller rig and running 2 man charters out of it for kings only.
    Life's to short for an ugly boat

    Blaze N Abel Charters
    Kodiak, AK
    www.alaska-fish.com
    https://www.facebook.com/BlazeNAbelCharters/?fref=ts

  6. #6
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    Have you ever tried plastics like a Zoom Fluke or Senko?

  7. #7

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    Probably, but I don't remember! Over the last 5 years or so I've picked up about every plastic known to man. For the most part I've settled on pre-rigged and weighted fish-shapes like the various Storm models (and others), rather than plastics used with leadheads or bare hooks and separate weights. It's a matter of convenience and tradition for me, rather than a reflection on the other versions. I just like tying on a lure that's ready to go rather than fiddling with setup.

    The bigger deal appears to be getting the profile, color and action right. They want a fish shape in a good color, moving right. Most hits come on the sink rather than the retrieve, so a rod motion as I described above with jigs has been best so far. I'm still experimenting with it in Alaska, but I think I learned an important lesson with plastics while fishing in Florida. Had a tarpon bite off the tail on a Storm, so it lost most of the tail wiggle. Got lazy and made another cast rather than replacing it. Wham! Wham! Wham! Tarpon and everything else went wild because it sank faster without the wiggle tail fin. Started cutting off the tails as a matter of course, and it really paid off. So far in Alaska this spring, my wife and I have caught 11 kings on cast Storms, alternating between with-tails and tail-gone. Only one of them hit the version with the tail in place.

    I tell you all that, because lots of the plastics intended for rigging yourself don't have that wiggle tail fin. It tells me if I'd get off my hiney and do some rigging, I'd probably find lots of models cheaper than Storm that work well. Haven't tried trolling any of them yet, but I bet that's rich ground too, they work so well when cast.

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