Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Halibut Tackle and general questions

  1. #1
    New member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    1

    Default Halibut Tackle and general questions

    Hello all.

    I am new to this forum, and it has been a great help.

    I have a cabin near Seldovia, and over the last couple of years, I have been slowly preparing myself to really get into the fishing around the area. However, I do have a few questions. I figure that, since it's the "off season", I'd try to get everyone excited.

    1. What is the preferred setup for halibut (rod and reel). I'd like all opinions on this one...the "money is not an issue" opinion and "**** this stuff is expensive" opinion.

    2. I'd like to start downrigger fishing for salmon as well. What is the preferred set up for this? I've never downrigged before, but know that the waters around Seldovia are great for kings, reds and silvers.

    3. Any downrigger preferences? Manual vs. electric. I'd like to try not to break the bank on this one.

    4. Fishing spots out of Seldovia? I have a 21 foot Deep V aluminum skiff; I'll be going up in June and August. I'd like to hit the halibut really hard in June, but I know that it's also a good time for reds and kings as well. I've read about Flat Island and such, but would prefer to stay away from crowds.

    5. Any opinions on a fish finder/GPS/ depth finder? I've budgeted about $700 for this, as I've never had one and figure this is one of the main reasons we don't catch as much as we could.

    6. Rigging and hook size? Seemed like last year, we had a really hard time hooking up the halibut...they weren't really big, and I thought that hook size had a lot to do with it...any comments on circles vs. J hooks?

    Any further help would be appreciated. I'm not trying to get anyone to give up their favorite spots, just want to know in which direction to head.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Member MRFISH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    1,315

    Default halibut stuff...

    Good, questions...some of them have been discussed in different threads in the past. I'll just offer my opinion on a few of your questions...

    For the Rod/Reel, I've never been too picky , but really like the Lamiglas rod that I have (I don't know the model), but they're very well made. Look for one with a more sensitive tip, if can help you detect lighter strikes. I absolutely love my reel, it's an Avet 2-speed reel and it's much nicer to reel up for bait-checks or for the chickens. I only wish it had a level wind, but that's not a deal-breaker, in my opinion.

    Downriggers: I just have Canon uni-troll's. Manual crank. They work fine for me, but I don't use them all that much or fish them that deep, and I don't really fish for kings. The few times I've gone out on charters (from Anchor Point) for kings, they have had the electric DR's, which seemed really nice -- especially when you get a fish on -- all you have to do is hit a button and it retrieves the cannonball automatically. Another thing to consider with electric DR's are the models that let you adjust the line voltage. All downriggers put out a very mild electrical charge, and from what I've heard there's a "sweet spot", that may enhance your catchability -- or at a minimum, not repel fish. Maybe this is myth, but I've heard some people swear by it.

    Hooks: Circle, definitely. I'm not sure, but I think the 14/0 and 16/0 are the preferred sizes. You can get smaller ones, but I don't think it matters all that much. I've caught plenty of small halibut on the large hooks. I think the size of the bait you put on the hook has more influence over the size of fish you catch (if there are mixed-sized fish down there).

    Enjoy, and good luck. I look forward to seeing what others have to say about the "line voltage" issue.

  3. #3

    Default

    1 Avet pro 4/0's if you can fidn them for reels, you'll never buy another one
    seeker rods

    2 preferred setup? I run both bait, flashers and hoochies and spoons, have yet to dry jplugs yet though its hot ont he list of to do's for those odd days.

    3 Elec, no question. Scottys!

    4 cant help ya, never been

    5 Simrad is nice, raymarine is nice, lowarnce is ok....I'd get something you can do gps fish finding and radar if possible all on one. Raymarine c80 is what I'd shoot for, or atleast the c70, you wont regret it.

    6 Circles, I run 12/0 owners, if you are chicken fishing run something smaller. I do run another rig, basically a glorified mooching rig, with two 10/0 gammys on 250lb mono tied to a spreader to keep from tangling (dont leave this feature out, the one time you stick a big fish and he busts you clean, you'll understand why). In SE we can run sport caught chums and pinks for bait...salmon bellys work well. Owners are nice, first year I used them, especially on big fish....I would assume on the smaller flatties you're experiences will be identical, more hookups using the owners no question.

    7, find structure, or flats near it...depends really on whats around, ie if its flat forever find humps drops, rockpiles pinacles....or visa versa. If it's the grand canyon, find a flat spot, you'll find the fish. Dont right off a spot becuase it didnt fish and give it time. A lot of this will be gleaned by time on the water and even more by pure luck. Mark spots and come back and fish them, keep a record of them.

    Gl

  4. #4
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Eagle River/ Juneau
    Posts
    5,154

    Default

    I know a place by seldovia, PM me for it
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  5. #5
    Member akrstabout's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    2,293

    Default Circle hooks

    I use the biggest I can find, 2/0 i think. Little ones can bite them, down to 15#. Anything smaller is not worth keeping anyways. I make my own rigs. Get a crimper tool for $30 and some 300# mono and have it. The ones I make get tore up by the butts. Sportsmans or B&J will have all you need.

    Lamaglass rods are nice. Fenwicks are good too and also tidewater by shakespear. All can be found at sportsmans for $80 to $50. I have them all plus center line diawa. Reels I have are Penn and Diawa, Penns are a lot nicer. Don't get level winds. I highly suggest B&J on the reels. Good prices for the most part but very good on this subject. I looked at avets but not really made for homer area. You will end up working them too hard for what they are made for. They are not geared low enough. If you are in a good store they will be honest with you about that. Even the two speeds are not low enough. PWS fishing they would be fine. Any major tide and lead will eventually kill them, at that price just stick to penn, the black ones but not the cheapest ones.

    On spots near seldovia, fish and you will find them. How do you think we found them. Time and just pic spots.

  6. #6
    New member fishnhuntr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    317

    Default 1 more opinion

    Quote Originally Posted by la_lengua View Post
    Hello all.

    I am new to this forum, and it has been a great help.

    I have a cabin near Seldovia, and over the last couple of years, I have been slowly preparing myself to really get into the fishing around the area. However, I do have a few questions. I figure that, since it's the "off season", I'd try to get everyone excited.

    1. What is the preferred setup for halibut (rod and reel). I'd like all opinions on this one...the "money is not an issue" opinion and "**** this stuff is expensive" opinion.

    2. I'd like to start downrigger fishing for salmon as well. What is the preferred set up for this? I've never downrigged before, but know that the waters around Seldovia are great for kings, reds and silvers.

    3. Any downrigger preferences? Manual vs. electric. I'd like to try not to break the bank on this one.

    4. Fishing spots out of Seldovia? I have a 21 foot Deep V aluminum skiff; I'll be going up in June and August. I'd like to hit the halibut really hard in June, but I know that it's also a good time for reds and kings as well. I've read about Flat Island and such, but would prefer to stay away from crowds.

    5. Any opinions on a fish finder/GPS/ depth finder? I've budgeted about $700 for this, as I've never had one and figure this is one of the main reasons we don't catch as much as we could.

    6. Rigging and hook size? Seemed like last year, we had a really hard time hooking up the halibut...they weren't really big, and I thought that hook size had a lot to do with it...any comments on circles vs. J hooks?

    Any further help would be appreciated. I'm not trying to get anyone to give up their favorite spots, just want to know in which direction to head.

    Thanks in advance.
    My .02

    1. I have tidewater rods w/ penn reels, I had to find an economical way to outfit my whole boat so that's how I went, basically 60 bucks per rod and reel so 120 each pole, oh plus expensive line lol, 150 per pole. They aren't anything fancy but have been doing the job just fine, all are the basic black level winds cept one high speed (which I really like and don't give up when fishing). I've heard don't buy level winds they'll strip out on you over time, I've used mine 2 seasons now, 3-4 trips each, 3-4 days hard fishing each, and so far they've been fine, time will tell.

    2, 3. Riggers. I have 2 Cannon manuals that are I believe 21 years old...nuff said? My opinion, stay away from the sport, plastic troll styles, I don't trust their shorter, thinner booms, seen them get broken. I think they'd be "ok" with 6 lb balls but I prefer 8 and 10 would be even better, less swing as you're trolling equals more precise depth and lesser chance of getting into other gear. If I had to buy I'd get I believe they're called the uni-troll cannon manuals, 250 a piece in Cabelas I believe. I would find someone who has them though to find out if that extendable boom has held up for them. Mine are so old they are solid 1 piece and almost 6' I think, maybe 5, but either way they're not going to fall apart by any means.

    Far as trolling, I like a silver or chartreuse smaller flasher/dodger with a hootchie behind. I like to rip about 6-8 ft of line off then attach to your release, since you're new start it halfway in your release to begin with, if fish are having trouble popping it out move it further out, too easy further in you get the idea, I don't like the newer release's near as well as the old style, they seem much stiffer, too stiff. Silvers run shallower, kings deeper, reds I couldn't tell you.

    4. Can't help you, live in North Pole and fish Valdez.

    5. I and the other 5-6 guys/boats at my work run Garmin and have all had good luck with them, GPS/fish combo's. Lot of guys will tell you to buy separate units, if you can great, I couldn't get that carried away. 700 will buy you a nice unit, spend as much as you can on that one though, you can look at them at Cabelas, but best price I found them was at tigergps.com. Wish I could remember the model I have for you but can't off the top of my head. I think 178, I also have the blue chart card for it and really like it, underwater topo for PWS, that's extra of course. IF I could buy separate units though, I'd probably have a garmin gps and a lowrance fishfinder.

    Hope this helps, have fun shopping too, I know I did/do, getting the boat decked out is almost, not quite, but almost as much fun as settin the hook. Good luck.
    Cody

  7. #7
    Member captaindd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Salcha, AK
    Posts
    762

    Default Recommended Gear

    I operate out of Valdez and tried just about all of the reels made and the first thing you need to decide is how much you want to spend. The best reel for the money is the 114 Penn. Get it will the 2.8 to 1 gears and you catch any thing out there. You can buy 3 or 4 of the 114 Penn’s for the price of an Avet or Penn International. I recommend you buy at least 2 so you have a back up incase you get spooled. The main thing with all of the reels is that you wash them down with fresh water after use and that you take them a part in the off season and cleans them. You got to get the corrosion off all the screws and other parts that hold the reels together. Also not reels should not be washed in a dish washer as it can damage the surface on some reels and hot drying is not recommended.
    Once you have picked your reel you will need a good pole and line. I recommend Tuff Line or Power Pro both have small diameters with great strength. Poles will depend on what your line size is and how you are going to fish them. Diawa Inter-Line is a good all around pole. The pole does not have any guides so you do not have to worry about breaking them. Recommend line 100#. Lamiglas rods are OK as long as you do not hit the aluminum on your boat with them. The glass will crack and the rods will break into. My passengers broke 6 of them last year. I have order some solid fiber glass rods from Seeker to replace them. The solid rods will not be as sensitive as the lighter rods but should last longer. Get most of my gear from James Tackle on the East Coast.
    Down Riggers? That will depend on how much you want to spend and the size of your boat. I use Scotty Electrics. Scotty has the best warranty and are great down riggers. I have used Penn, Big Jon, Great Lakes, Cannon Down Riggers, and Scotty’s are the best. Along with the down riggers you should also get some divers.
    GPS/Sonar Most of your GPS Sonar combinations are good. I use Garmin 3210 with a RayMarine stainless steel 1000 Watt Transducer. Your boat is smaller than mine so I would suggest a smaller Garmin Unit. Be sure your GPS is the mapping type and you have the cards for your area.
    Anchor Line and Anchor. I recommend that you carry at least 300 ft of line and a 15 pound anchor. You should also carry a buoy to retrieve the anchor with.
    Harpoon and lance. I recommend at least two harpoon heads with 10 ft of rope.
    Hand gaff
    Salmon Net
    Gun or Bang Stick I carry both a 38 bang stick and a Rugger 22 pistol
    16/0 circle hooks
    If you need to contact me go to my web site www.fishvaldez.com

  8. #8
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    5,594

    Default

    Halibut gear depends on whether you want to fish by soaking bait, or jigging.

    The std bait rod is a stiff 5 1/2' boat rod, the ceramic eyes are the way to go as they don't rust or get chewed on w/ braided line. Rods vary in price starting around $100. I prefer rods with aluminum real seats, and designed for 50-80# line. As for reels, the high speed 4/0 114 senator is a good basic real with a decent drag. If you have more to spend, moving up to a lever drag and possibly a two speed real has benefits. I have several penn's, and have fished with the avet lever drags. There is no doubt the avets are a vastly superior reel, as they should be for over twice the price. I'd spool them with either 50 or 80# braided line and use a heavy mono leader 300-500#. The heavy leaders take the abuse of fish teeth, and give you something to grab ahold of when bringing the fish on board. I tie the braided line to a 4/0 swivel, 3' of heavy mono and a 4/0 cork screw swivel to change out terminal tackle. The terminal tackle consists of a ~2' leader with another corkscrew swivel for sinkers and a large circle hook. Out of Seldovia you'll be contending with strong tides and needing upwards of 5# to keep on bottom when it's ripping, but easily hold bottom with 2# during slack.

    As to jigging rods, read the thread on butterfly jigging. I have jigged with the stiff bait rods, but they really wear you out. To me jigging is much more fun than soaking bait, and you often end up with rock fish as well as halibut. It's a great way to explore new fishing holes without wearing yourself out dropping and retrieving heavy sinkers. If several folks are fishing, you can run bait on one rod, and jig a couple others. These rods also work well for salmon. Go with a smaller high speed reel, shimano torium or avets. Quality smaller reals can take the abuse of a big but, and the high speed is an advantage when fishing deep.

    The gear shed on Homer is a great place to get terminal tackle.

  9. #9

    Default Two hook rig?

    Hey TradBow, or others, can you give us a picture or drawing of your two hook halibut spreader rig? I'm interested in a proven setup to use two separate leaders/hooks, so I have more chances at a bait stealer. Thanks, WW

  10. #10
    Member MRFISH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    1,315

    Default spreader bar

    Quote Originally Posted by Wes Walker View Post
    Hey TradBow, or others, can you give us a picture or drawing of your two hook halibut spreader rig? I'm interested in a proven setup to use two separate leaders/hooks, so I have more chances at a bait stealer. Thanks, WW
    I use spreader bars sometimes, too. They sell them at B&J's. It's an aluminum rod, bent into an "L" shape. Your main line gets attached to a loop/swivel at the 90 degree bend, the bait (w/ leader) goes onto the longer end of the "L" and your weight goes on the short end of the "L". The rig helps keep your hook/leader from tangling up when letting it fall to the bottom--by holding it away from the mainline. I found a website with a few pictures...these aren't exactly the same, but are close enough to see what I'm describing.

    http://www.halibut.net/halibut-fishing-tackle.htm

    I also use a 2--hook (J-hooks) leader on the spreader rig (when I know I'm not in rockfish country) that I get at B&J's. It's on a stainless steel leader. The upper hook has a crimp that you fix in place with pliers...so you can set the distance between hooks that you want.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •