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Thread: Halibut from an inflatable

  1. #1
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    Default Halibut from an inflatable

    Ok...I had said I'd post this on the thread about halibut fishing from a float tube. Clearly, fishing from a 9ft zodiac-style inflatable isn't the same kind of thing, but it's what I use to go halibut fishing...

    Typically, I caught fish like this (and, yes, I realize there are 2 limits there; one of them isn't mine...)


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    But one day I did really well...



    So I stuffed them in the trunk of my midsize car (again, working with what I have...) and I was off to Harris harbor to deal with'em....



    This first one was 60lbs according to the length measurement table in the tide book



    The 2nd one went 90 lbs, and I needed a bit of help from my neighbor (though I'm the one doing most of the lifting)...


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    Default Wow i want to book with you

    So how much do you charge for a charter i will pay for a trip on youre boat nice catches btw

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    Member Larsenvega's Avatar
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    I too will go for the halibut with my 12.5 ft inflatable whenever I get the chance. It's a strong rig and is plenty seaworthy enough to head out in Passage, Blackstone, and Resurection. With the 15hp Johnson, I can fish all day (8 hours) jetting around at near full throttle on around 3-4 gallons of gas. The fastest I've gotten it up to was 23mph, but usually cruise at 19-20. While it's true that I prefer the comforts of the 22ft C-Dory we occasionally rent, I absolutely love being able to go on fishing trips out of Whittier for under $70 (including truck/boat gas, tunnel fees, and parking). We have a seasonal launch permit, which helps to whittle down the costs a little more.





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    Great pics......its a blast to fish from them...........
    BONEYARDBAITS THE BEST HALIBUT, ROCKFISH GRUBS ON THE PLANET....''06'' WORLD RECORD LINGCOD ''08'' HOMER HALIBUT DERBY WINNER''. BOTH FISH CAUGHT WITH BONEYARDBAIT GRUBS WWW.BONEYARDBAITS.COM

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    Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    Dr. No, LarsenVega,

    Do you two gents think I could do a similiar trip in the places you go with my freighter canoes (on a calm day of course)? One does about 18-19mph with the six horse. The other one is going to get a 9.8 horse tohatsu. I'm an interior kind of guy and don't venture into the bays too much. With your blessing and approval, I might someday attempt your minimalist fishing style too. I'm not looking for info from the guy that owns an ocean going vessel with twin 200 horse motors......just a little bit of encouraging advice. There are pics of my freighter over in the canoe forum. It's about 44 inches wide 17.5ft. long, Ive hauled moose and caribou with it. And I've been in some 2ft.+ waves too.

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    Member Larsenvega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainer_in_ak View Post
    Dr. No, LarsenVega,

    Do you two gents think I could do a similiar trip in the places you go with my freighter canoes (on a calm day of course)? One does about 18-19mph with the six horse. The other one is going to get a 9.8 horse tohatsu. I'm an interior kind of guy and don't venture into the bays too much. With your blessing and approval, I might someday attempt your minimalist fishing style too. I'm not looking for info from the guy that owns an ocean going vessel with twin 200 horse motors......just a little bit of encouraging advice. There are pics of my freighter over in the canoe forum. It's about 44 inches wide 17.5ft. long, Ive hauled moose and caribou with it. And I've been in some 2ft.+ waves too.
    Mainer in AK,

    I think you could possibly run into some trouble with a freighter canoe if some weather kicked up quickly or if you happened to hook into one of those infamous 200+ pounders. The one thing that make the inflatables good for this kind of stuff is that they can hug the waves very well without a threat of capsizing, and they have really high weight capacities (mine has 1750). If you were to have to try your rig out somewhere out of the places mentioned, I'd probably go with Passage Canal on an early morning. Most days I take off there it is like glass in the morning, but picks up by mid to late afternoon. Seward would most likely be a no go. Their seas out there kick up bad just about every afternoon right before I try to come back in. Me and a buddy went out there one morning on smooth water, and came back in at 3pm in 5 ft seas and looked like we had ridden the log ride at an amusement park. And nope, the forecast didn't call for it! You could always score yourself an inflatable for trips like these for only around $1000 to $2000 (or even cheaper if you buy used), and you could use your existing motors for the outings. I think that would be your safest option for minimalist salt water fishing. Good luck to you in whatever you decide though!

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    what is the smallest v-bottom boat that you would recomend for places like these?

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    Member Larsenvega's Avatar
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    Dr No,

    Quick question...how did you subdue your big halibut while on your inflatable? I have never caught anything over 40lbs from mine yet, and have been contemplating what I'm gonna do once it happens. I am usually carrying a glock 10mm while out and about in PWS, so that may be my only option. I have a gaff, but never take it out on the inflatable for fear of a large fish gashing the boat once gaffed. Just interested to hear what your course of action was.

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    Default Larsenvega...

    It might not be the best idea to use your 10mm to dipatch a fish along side your boat. The reason the boat captains use the .410 shot is to reduce the chance of the lead deflecting in the water and poking a hole in the boat.
    Just a thought for ya.
    BK

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    Quote Originally Posted by Larsenvega View Post
    Dr No,

    Quick question...how did you subdue your big halibut while on your inflatable? I have never caught anything over 40lbs from mine yet, and have been contemplating what I'm gonna do once it happens. I am usually carrying a glock 10mm while out and about in PWS, so that may be my only option. I have a gaff, but never take it out on the inflatable for fear of a large fish gashing the boat once gaffed. Just interested to hear what your course of action was.

    If it were me, I would tail wrap it and poke it in the gills with the fillet knife. Don't know if I would want the chance of a deflection near a rubber boat.

  12. #12

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    Small harpoon comes to mind. Done it many times in small boats. Just make sure you get a complte pass through and that it is tied to the BOW line. I wrapped it around the stern side cleet in a pinch on a 150lber and the pucker factor reached 10 rather qwickly. Oh ya enjoy the ride!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mainer_in_ak View Post
    Dr. No, LarsenVega,

    Do you two gents think I could do a similiar trip in the places you go with my freighter canoes (on a calm day of course)? One does about 18-19mph with the six horse. The other one is going to get a 9.8 horse tohatsu. I'm an interior kind of guy and don't venture into the bays too much. With your blessing and approval, I might someday attempt your minimalist fishing style too. I'm not looking for info from the guy that owns an ocean going vessel with twin 200 horse motors......just a little bit of encouraging advice. There are pics of my freighter over in the canoe forum. It's about 44 inches wide 17.5ft. long, Ive hauled moose and caribou with it. And I've been in some 2ft.+ waves too.
    My buddy's dad built a 21.5 foot canoe for fishing prince william sound and hauling out moose. They haven't caught a big halibut out of it yet, we always figured we'd drag it to a beach to land a big one. I know some folks in kodiak who hooked a 200# butt out of a 8 ft zod and just motored to the beach to land it.

    Oh I'll add you should fashion some splash gaurds for the gunwales of your boat, they are super handy because they keep you drier and give you a good spot to cut bait etc.
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  14. #14
    Member marshall's Avatar
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    Two summers ago I was fishing about 20 miles west of Homer off A boat called the Irish. A Salmon shark at least 10 feet long ate my halibut as the deck hand was getting ready to gaff it. All I can say is I'm really glad I wasn't in an inflatable boat. That shark seemed to be as long as the back of the boat was wide. It appeared out of no where and all I had left was a head on a hook. The black shark came and went in the blink of an eye, we never saw it again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by trapperdan View Post
    what is the smallest v-bottom boat that you would recomend for places like these?
    That's always the magic question, and there is no hard and fast rule. There are many things to keep in mind though.

    When conditions are perfect, and I've been out of Whittier many times when the water is glass all the way out towards Montague, you could get out and back in a 12' skiff.

    Conditions are rarely perfect, and rarely stay perfect for an extended amount of time. How likely is it that the day(s) you plan to fish will coincide with that perfect weather? Odds are that the too small for realistic conditions boat may never be safely taken out during the times you want to fish.

    Another thing to consider is what safety equipment you will take on board. A very small boat simple isn't going to have room for cold water survival suits, a tent, food, etc. All equipment vital for a boat that you would find yourself in conditions where you will have to head to shore vs. heading back to port and waiting for the weather to turn.

    To my way of thinking, a practical skiff that can be taken out and return in more typical conditions is an 18-20 footer with a 50 horse. You'll have enough boat for 2-3 adults, gear, and it can take a little bit of water before you need to hide out.

  16. #16

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    I caught a 143lber off of a 14' achilles 5 years ago. I've also seen one over 200 lbs come in on the same boat. I harpoon mine, beat with lead weighted bat, tied head to tail and pulled on.

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    Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    IMO.....you crazy fisherman who venture out to sea in these minimalist boats (because it's all you have) are some bold, crazy folks! You have my respect, I'm in awe of the boats that you are taking out there. Us freighter guys with lifts are the minimalists of the interior shallow rivers......you guys are the ocean going version. I'm thinking of attempting this crazy (cheap) fishing myself, but.......a set of helper pontoons might be a good idea for my freighters, plus......going as a group would prob. not be a bad idea as i have two of them. They have about 1500lbs. capacity. This kind of stuff reminds me of the Natives of our state who for generations.....did the same thing with boats powered by human power. I know that a guy with a 100,000 dollar boat will prob. not condone what you guys are doing........but I'm sure the last time you checked.......there's halibut in your freezer! Here's another idea......Taures is making that Judge pistol that fires 3in. mag 410........would that be a good little thing to have in case of catching a big one? This thread is some very entertaining stuff!

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    Member jrogers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mallardman View Post
    Small harpoon comes to mind. Done it many times in small boats. Just make sure you get a complte pass through and that it is tied to the BOW line. I wrapped it around the stern side cleet in a pinch on a 150lber and the pucker factor reached 10 rather qwickly. Oh ya enjoy the ride!

    The harpoon is probabily the safest option. Another twist to this technique is to not tie the line to the stern, but instead to a buoy and let it go. The fish may pull it down for a little bit, but then it will reappear when it gets worn out and you can retreive it when it is safer.

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    should try one off a jet ski.... 7 hours to pull in a 40 lb halibut... and 6 miles from where we started..that sucka towed me all over.....
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

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    Quote Originally Posted by Larsenvega View Post
    Dr No,

    Quick question...how did you subdue your big halibut while on your inflatable? I have never caught anything over 40lbs from mine yet, and have been contemplating what I'm gonna do once it happens. I am usually carrying a glock 10mm while out and about in PWS, so that may be my only option. I have a gaff, but never take it out on the inflatable for fear of a large fish gashing the boat once gaffed. Just interested to hear what your course of action was.
    To be honest, on the first one, I tried to gaff it (with a swing away from the boat )...admittedly not my brightest move. Understandably, I didn't get a good swing in as I was trying to hold the pole with one and and swing away from the boat with the other (the gaff goes in a bucket, in case you're wondering; I have an inflatable floor, so pretty much everything goes in a bucket)..Anyways, the halibut tore the gaff out of my hand, ran like 30 yards straight across the surface and went right back down to the bottom. That's when I decided, F*** it, I'm dragging it to shore. And that's what I did (for both of them). It was kinda like towing a big sheet of plywood. It stayed 1-3 feet down the whole way to the beach. They really are no match for a 5hp motor

    I wouldn't really say what I'm doing is dangerous. I don't go far from shore (always within 1 mile) and I pay attention to the weather. When it's dangerous to go out, it's also no fun...I've been out in 2-3 foot waves, and it's doable to get around, but it's not much fun....And, I always wear my life jacket.

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