Landing Halibut While Shore Fishing from Rocks

Discussion in 'Bay fishing' started by DPevin, Sep 25, 2017.

  1. DPevin

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    Ok...so in my bay fishing I have only landed some little halibut. Small enough I can just lift them up out of the water like normal with a bass and all that good stuff.

    Well, I have been "targeting" them more lately, which basically is just I have caught a couple small ones in a certain area, been focusing my bait and presentation and hooked up to a couple bigger ones, as far as I can tell from the bite that is, and ended up getting bit off on my 12#.

    Well, I have been learning from each of those and adjusted a few little things accordingly...and last night those adjustments paid off. Hit the spot, tied on my lure thats been the ticket lately and started plugging away. BUMP, solid hit, no hook up....work around where I got hit for a few more casts and there it is, feel the weight, wind down/rod loads up, swing, its on...fight it, shakes, let it do its thing instead of try and horse it in, gain some line on it, it goes on a run, glad I backed off my drag, work it in, and there it is! FIRST LEGAL HALIBUT. Cool right, not so much...

    So I am on some rocks on an an island. I get it in close see what it is, and am pumped. I test lifting it out of the water and as soon as its head clears it freaks....ok not gonna happen. I step down one rock and am right on the water...try and wrap the line around my hand and see about pulling it up but it freaks when it clears the water again and I dont want it to shake off....also dont want to just drag it up on the rocks and hurt it. Esp since I am pretty positive its legal, but its close enough to where I would have needed to measure it. Its head shaking and I am starting to worry it will spit the hook...I decide to grab it while its in the water but honestly I am a bit unsure the best way to go about it, getting a hold of the gills would have been tough with how much it was freaking. Grab the tail maybe? So I have my rod in one hand and I am trying to pull it just a bit closer to me, and bam, it bites through the line...expletives....its flopping in a little trough of water en between a couple rocks and I go to jump and cover it with my hand, and it flops out and darts off....I just sat down on a rock. My buddy was there and saw it and all, but I was still bummed I didn't complete the process.

    Any tips on landing them from rocks like that? Best place to grab them, advice on calming them down. I feel like I made the right decision, just took to long to come to it.
     
  2. lchicker

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    I've gotten a couple close legals. Not sure what I'd do if I had a huge one >30", but what I did is I found a rock as close to the water as possible and slid its head onto the flat side of the rock. Then I slowly moved towards it and lightly pinned it, just enough so that you're able to grab it with both hands. Admittedly, it would probably work better if you call your friend over and hand him your rod while you do the dirty work. That way you don't lose your balance.
     
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  3. DPevin

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    Not a bad idea, thanks for the input.
     
  4. Troy

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    If you got a hole your working do some scouting while fishing and look for those low lying rocks or little inlets you can slide them into...

    I lost a huge one at night one time, the next day went out and bought a gaff, I'll never go after halibut without the gaff again...

    That being said most of the time they are short or hard to tell if it's legal, in those instances slide them up onto some flat rocks
     
  5. DPevin

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    Yeah I always find a pocked to stand in where I am right up on the water. Mainly so if I am unhooking a fish and they get crazy, they just fall into the water and not on the rocks hah.

    Sounds like the play is to slide them up on some rocks.
     
  6. dj thrillz

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    Legal Hali's and fishing from rocks is a losing battle mostly. I have lost a few due to not ding able to get them up safely. Now, if I have a larger one on, legal or not, I try to tire it out a bit. Not for a long time but I do let them run more than normal, then I will try and locate a decent spot to slide him in. Doesn't mean they still wont go apeshyt tho.
     
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  7. stoned-trout

    stoned-trout If it smells like fish
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    Practice with Ray's then halibut are easy...expect to get wet....
     
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  8. Nickweissmusic

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    If I'm targeting anything with nasty teeth or spines, I bring a short handled rubber coated net, i hang it from my tackle bag. It can be a little annoying to lug around but im used to it by now, I'm a musician so I need to protect the moneymakers, nor can I afford to bust an arm fumbling around on the rocks. This makes short work of halis, my personal best is 24," had no problem: https://m.dickssportinggoods.com/p/...2hWsg5KVAUXsmMEKqVIHwB0boCJm2_8BoCKIoQAvD_BwE.
     
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  9. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach
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    Net/gaff/burlap is your friend
     
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  10. DPevin

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    This makes me feel better hah. Now that I am able to tell the bite, and be pretty confident in what it is, letting it run and tire out sounds like a good plan. Sounds like there is just more patience, moving around, and strategy involved than horsing a bass outta structure and getting them in as fast as possible before they take you into a rock. Duh huh...haha.

    I also noticed ive been bit off on all three of the larger ones I have hooked up with, including the one I got to the rocks, although that one probably sawed me off more than anything as I was messing with it....These have all come at night, I think since it is at night, I might start fishing with a clip to attach the lure...maybe give myself another 1/2" or whatever for them to bite and not get the line.
     
  11. Nickweissmusic

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    EWG worm hooks can be used normally, but you can also use them to nose hook lures or strip baits and such, acts as a mini leader. My go-to Hali lure is a big blue mackerel color krocodile, no bite offs there ;) when using bait for Hali I use offset mutu or circle hooks with a heavier mono leader (20lb at a minimum), and exercise patience as I feel them chewing the bait. They either hook up, or they don't. Let the patience flow through you... I think the only thing more reliable would be wire leaders, never done that yet.
     
  12. fisheromen

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    That is the net I use on my tube... for bass. I would hate to try to get a large Halibut in that!
     
  13. Werfless

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    If it was too big for that, the gaff is always an option
     
  14. robbiesmith25

    robbiesmith25 Well-Known Member

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    Not that this is your complete answer....
    ___________________________________________________________________________
    I wear a stainless steel fish gripper on my belt loop when I'm on the rocks just for this reason. And in the surf up to waste high water... for that matter...(don't need to bring the shorties all the way to the beach to release them.)
    If I'm pulling the Halibut in, has its mouth open or partially open, I can in a split-second get that fish gripper in its mouth and let go of the trigger. Once that trigger has been released, fish isn't going anywhere as long as you have a good hold of the handle.

    This would only work in the scenario where the fish comes in nice and calmly and with its mouth somewhat/completely open. I realize the chances of that are about 50/50. Make sure to get the jaw and not just flesh, it will rip. Not to say that all this will happen at all, its just what I try to do when I'm on the rocks.

    Also, if there's anyway of getting to the underside of the fish, get your hand in those gills good and you will have it. (Don't put your hand too far up, the snapping jaws will get you from the inside!)
     
    #14 robbiesmith25, Sep 26, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2017
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  15. Nickweissmusic

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    It honestly works great, but my PB is 24," not sure how much bigger you'll encounter in the bays or from shore.
     
  16. Nickweissmusic

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    I think we need a bigger net...

    I think it might be deceptive, but the net I have pretty much fit the entire 24 inch fish in it, maybe a little tail sticking out. I'm sure it would help control the front half of one of those monster halis, but yeah, at that point, you're probably best off with a gaff.
     
  17. Vito1023

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    I wondered about a snap myself I've seen few posted with snaps pon
     
  18. fishingmissionbay

    fishingmissionbay Well-Known Member

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    If you tell us your hole I think we can all assist you a little better..
     
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  19. DPevin

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    You want to drive up to Dana Point I will take you myself hah
     
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  20. DPevin

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    I have been using them a lot lately. Mainly when I fish from the kayak at night. It just makes it easier to change out lures while in the dark on the kayak. I am liking it better than having to re-tie every time. And I have not noticed any sort of drop off in bites. Again though, this is for at night.

    I have tried it from shore at night also with pretty good results too. But mainly when I am pressed for time and want to save enough time for a few more casts hah.

    Don't think I would do it during the day, maybe with more of a reaction bite type of lure or presentation?
     
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