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Thread: Visting from Texas - tackle suggestions/advice?

  1. #1
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    Default Visting from Texas - tackle suggestions/advice?

    Greetings from Texas. My family & I are going to Ketchikan for a bit over a week at the end of July for some salmon & halibut fishing. We're going with the self-guided route using skiffs and boats provided by the marina we're staying at rather than hiring a guide; the boats will have downriggers, the skiffs won't. I'm also bringing my own rods, reels & tackle.

    In researching fishing methods for salmon, it seems that 'flashers' are used quite alot as attractors for salmon. The online store lists them in sizes from 4" to 8" - is there a particular size that anyone here would recommend? We're not concerned about targeting trophy kings only, I'll be delighted to have my mom catch plenty of silvers & pinks.

    Trolling spoons: I have a boxful of gold and silver Johnson spoons in sizes from 2" to 4" that I use down here for both freshwater and saltwater. Should these be good up there as well, or should I plan on buying others for this trip? These are single hook spoons ... as I saw the interesting regulations on treble hooks.

    Will also bring some lures for vertical jigging - diamond jigs, butterfly jigs, sassy shads. Does anyone up there use such lures, or is the fishery primarily trolling & bait?

    Thank you to all for any advice you can provide!

  2. #2

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    The Johnson spoons aren't really meant for trolling buy some Coyotes or Michigan Stingers (anything with glo-white for Coho)-once you locate fish the jigs with/without tails will certainly work-they're also deadly on bottomfish of all kinds

    A flasher/spoon combo is hard to beat (8"-11") but hardly compulsory if it's Coho you're after.

  3. #3

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    Forgot the trolling tips

    Coho are famous for following but not taking-one way to deal with this is to speed up quite rapidly for a hundred feet or so then slow back down KAPOWW!!!!! Fish On!!!

    Done it many a time and spoons are perfect for this.

    Also you don't usually have to be more than 40' deep if that occasionally you can catch them right in the prop wash.

    I've put these pics up in the past of lures that work well for Coho right on top




  4. #4
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    This is what I use for verticle jigging, the smaller metal jigs (point wilson darts, crippled herring, etc) will catch anything, but won't necessarily get down to the bottom dwellers.



    Leadheads for halibut, lingcod and rockfish



    3-16 oz should cover the majority of you applications, 3-4 oz for shallower fish, 6-12 for deeper, and a 16 or two for when the tides are ripping.

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    Quote Originally Posted by whalebreath View Post
    The Johnson spoons aren't really meant for trolling buy some Coyotes or Michigan Stingers (anything with glo-white for Coho)-once you locate fish the jigs with/without tails will certainly work-they're also deadly on bottomfish of all kinds

    A flasher/spoon combo is hard to beat (8"-11") but hardly compulsory if it's Coho you're after.
    Sorry, don't know why I said Johnson spoons ... meant to say Clark spoons. They're what we use trolling for king mackerel in the Gulf ...

    Anyways, the 8"-11" refers to the flasher size, spoon size or both?

    To Paul H - appreciate it very much. I can replicate alot of what you showed out of my tackle box, so I feel pretty good about this trip now.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeek the Greek View Post
    meant to say Clark spoons. They're what we use trolling for king mackerel in the Gulf ...
    I have no idea honestly never seen anyone use one but I'd sure give 'em a try!



    Quote Originally Posted by Zeek the Greek View Post
    Anyways, the 8"-11" refers to the flasher size, spoon size or both?
    Yes I meant flasher size-if you're wondering about colour you can't go wrong with Green.

  7. #7
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    Zeek - I'll be doing the same thing in early September. I'm headed to Ketchikan for coho and halibut around the Labor Day weekend.

    Self guided, out of Kundson Cove marina.

    I would suggest you learn to tie a double hook mooching rig. Or buy a bunch. They're really inexpensive. Rig up a whole herring so it rolls when trolled. Troll it behind a flasher, as slow as the motor will allow. I'm sure you can get fresh herring at Knudson's Cove marina. They can also give you some instructions on how to rig it. Everyone I know says that coho will hit herring before anything else.

    We will be using jigs and bait/circle hooks for halibut. The jigs that Paul H. suggested will work great. My favorite is a 12 to 16 oz. leadhead jig tipped with a 8" white Mr. Twister body. The best bait for halibut is a matter of great debate. My favorite is big herring (10") on a circle hook, but it's easy to lose alot of bait. See another recent thread on this BB for ideas.........

    Also, check the tide tables for the days you will be there. A big tidal swing will effect your ability to catch halibut. On a big tidal swing, it's hard to keep your bait on the bottom (in 100+ feet of water), but it will make a great scent trail. On a small tide, the opposite is true. It's easy to hit the bottom, but you might have to hit them on the head, as there won't be much scent trail.


    Good luck. Let us know how you did.

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