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Thread: Trolling with Sand Lances?

  1. #1
    Member JR2's Avatar
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    Default Trolling with Sand Lances?

    Does anyone use Sandlances as bait, trolled like a herring? The reason I as is that when I was younger and we trolled out of Homer along the old Harbor jetty we used to use them with great success. Back then we called them candle fish and would get them by using by snagging them out of the cannery effluent plume off the spit or occasionally getting them off the sandbars by going out with a rake. Used to catch all our Silvers with them.

  2. #2

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    I've tried various ways, but always found them way too soft, even salted. Freezing and thawing made it worse, BTW. My best solution for durability was to cut them in chunks, salted or fresh, and shove the chunks up inside hoochies for added smell. Best way for that was to use a bead on the leader with the hoochie above the bead, so I could slide the hoochie up off the bead, shove in the chunk of needlefish, then pull the bead up into the hoochie to hold it in place.

    Biggest advantage I've seen for the hoochies is that you can match the size of the needelfish that are in the area at the time, especially the little ones. Silvers can really lock in on the schools of small ones, but the real thing would be waaaaay too small to put on a hook.

  3. #3

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    I tip my hooch rigs with them when the silvers puke them...work great. The best day of silver fishing I ever had was using candlefish for bait.


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  4. #4
    Member JR2's Avatar
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    Back when I used them we would put them on the hook alive..... they died shortly after and I remember having to replace them all the time, but man they killed the slivers. I am going to give it a try this summer. Just have to find a cannery effluent to snag in again or maybe dig em on the sand bars at low tide. I wonder if you could catch them with one of those big casing nets like they used in Florida? Go out to the fishing grounds, find the birds, race over and chuck the net.... fresh bait.

  5. #5
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    Used to use them in Kodiak. Rake them off the beach, and then head out and chase the birds diving in fish balls. We put a single hook thru the head and added an egg sinker or lead head and cast off to the side of the birds. Not worth a hang if you froze them though.

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