New Year new opputunity to Murder Sculpin

Discussion in 'Sport Boats' started by Fat Spottie, Jan 1, 2019.

  1. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    With a new year the closure of the god forsaken potato chip rockfish and the occasional decent rockfish has to come to an end. Now, it’s time to murder Sulkin Sculpin and Dandy Sandies. This time of year you’re going to be looking at fishing heavy structure, rocks and outcrops piled atop one another with fish hiding in holes. Most people think it’s a waste of time and a great way to loose gear, which will be more likely to happen then not, but its a pretty active way of fishing and it’s actually one of my favorite ways to fish. I like using Sculpin Bombs with 65lb or 80lb braid to a 3/0 hook. Live bait will weed out those Sand Bass, while Squid tends to be a sculpin magnet. Donkey Rigs, tight dropper loops with short leaders, heavy jigs heads all work too. The way I fish these structures is by literally fishing in the little gaps between the rocks where the fish are hunkered down, just barely jigging the rod to move the jig around the rocks and into gaps and place that bait in front of the fish. The second thing, is once you get the fish to commit, how the hell to you get it out. Well first things first, don’t try setting the hook, just reel down. I fish a super stiff rod, braid, and a either a flouro or mono top shot and all I do is reel down. All it does is put instant pressure on the fish with no room to try and dig in or inflate. I’m using an M1 Inshore (a notoriously stiff rod with a light tip which I prefer over a more forgiving rod for this specific application, rods I'd look at are the Heavier Seeker Inshores, a reel with heavy drag and high gear ratio, and 65lb braid to 40lb mono or flouro. I don’t mess around with my knots either. I use an Double Uni with tag ends, and the SD Jam knot.

    I know a lot of people find this type of fishing boring and lackluster, but it’s for that reason that people don’t produce as well. Structure fishing on the Sporties requires some serious attention and effort to produce, BUT, it can be really rewarding. Hope this helps out with anyone trying to get out there and murder some Sculpin.
     
    #1 Fat Spottie, Jan 1, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2019
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  2. DPevin

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    I agree 100%. I look forward to this time of year. It really is an active way to fish and a lot of fun.

    I hit it yesterday on the Sum Fun. We got boat limits for 45 people plus crew. A lot of nice ones, limited by noon and then headed inside to fish bass (which wasn't happening but got a chance to mess around with my new pinhead BH89, gonna be a fun light surface iron/heavy bait rod).

    I typically have a game plan of keeping it simple and trying to catch my limit quick. Then getting more active trying to upgrade my sack to bigger fish. Yesterday I started with a 160 gram flat fall to a short (im talking 4" loop) dropper loop with the biggest sardine I can find. Pitched out from the boat a bit and limited in the first hour. Something kind of important, at least for fishing out of Dana that I have found, the rockfish love the sniper or diamond jig...but the sculpin aren't as into it. I have a lot more success with the flat fall for sculpin when fishing out of Dana. Also pretty key, since you are fishing that nasty structure, I move the hooks to the top of the jig. Personally I use a split ring/swivels to solid hooks. I dont tip the hooks when using it as a weight with a dropper loop.

    After limiting out I got more active with my fishing. Retied a leader and tied the just the flat fall back on. It sounds crazy and you look dumb, but I pin a dine on each hook. Rigged like this I cast it out, not too far since you are on top of the structure usually but far enough to be able to work it up the structure on the way back to the boat. Really feeling the bottom and like Fat Spottie said, when you stop feeling bottom (esp when you have casted it out and are working up the structure) let it drop into the hole and you will typically get bit. I typically will get the larger ones this way. You also avoid tangles if the boat swings on the hook. You HAVE TO move around the boat when casting like this until you find/feel the structure and figure out where it is. Or ask the captain where the structure is. For example yesterday it was off the port bow, I went 5 casts for 5 fish at one point, all jackpot contenders.

    The fun part about this type if fishing is if you find the fish, they eat pretty much anything as long as you are fishing it on the bottom in the nasty stuff. So after you limit, you can have fun and throw all kinds of stuff to try and get bit. Yesterday I also threw a 3 oz torpedo with a siwash hook and whole squid, banana head, sliding egg, and even a 6" swimbait tipped with squid.

    Like the man said, rod with a nice fast tip and good backbone is pretty key for a good hookset. I have a couple glass rods I like to use that work well enough but my composite rod really works best. Just was too lazy to mount a reel to it for yesterday.

    If you are up this way for a weekend 22nd street has fun twilight trips fri, sat and sunday nights from 6 to midnight and typically do well on the sculpin and you can get some monster sandbass.

    Capt. Shanes photo from yesterdays trip. Me in the background headed back to the bow to get another one hah.

    Capture.PNG
     
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  3. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    Fished the DD today with a limit of Dandy Sand Bass in the first drift alone and then plucked off a couple others on sluggos. Fished a Sculpin Bomb for over a limit of Scullies in the first 10 minutes, all shorts tho.

    Also got stung again today by the wayward yahoo. My girl is going to be real happy tonight.
     
    #3 Fat Spottie, Jan 2, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
  4. scisports

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    What depth is sculpin? Can you use spinning reels?
     
  5. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    NOT THE DECAF MACHINE NOOOOOO

    Jk jk, you can use spinning reels just make sure the rod will adeptly handle 2oz to 4oz
     
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  6. scisports

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    For the kidos lol
     
  7. DPevin

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    That is some solid fishing right there! Never heard of the sculpin bomb? Is that the torpedo weight/siwash hook combo or is it something completely different? I am going again either the 18th or 19th, always looking for something fun and different to throw for them.

    That is the one thing we lack out of Dana, we don't have a whole lot of Sandies mixed in with our sculpin.

    Getting stung is no fun. I was fishing out of Long Beach last time I got stung. Made that drive home even worse. The Dana boats tell people to keep them at the rail and to not swing them over, and then someone comes by and trims the spines over the side before putting them in the sacks. It is kind of a pain in the *** for people but I can remember when they didn't do that and it definitely has cut down on the close calls. Doesn't bother me any, when you find them you find them and they eat anything, so it's not like you are in a hurry.
     
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  8. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    The Sand Bass aren't really yo mixed into the Sculpin though, more of one area contains Sand Bass the and the other Sculpin. Typically in the Sculpin areas its like 1 sand bass to 3 or 4 sculpin, and the Sand Bass areas it’s 8:1 for sculpin.
     
    #8 Fat Spottie, Jan 2, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2019
  9. Fomen

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    There is NOTHING boring or lackluster about that type of fishing to me. It's always nice to be versed in different methods and techniques. It can only result in making you a better fisherman. Thanks for the detailed info. Very informative and educational.
     
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  10. Carterantebi

    Carterantebi The Skunk Magnet
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    Anyone wanna go for a sculpin/sandbass trip this weekend? I was supposed to go to Colonet tonight but hurt my back skiing the other day and called in sick. I’m feeling a bit better today though and really need to pull on something. Maybe a half day tomorrow?
     
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  11. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    50/50 chance as of right now if I’ll be able to be on the water tomorrow... if I am it will be the DD
     
  12. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    Jigging and feeling the bottom to be rewarded with a fish is pretty dange cool. Move up the rock or down the rock... feel the bite, pull the fish out. Pretty fun.
     
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  13. Carterantebi

    Carterantebi The Skunk Magnet
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    Cool, might join ya, might not. Just checked counts and it seemed slightly discouraging but idk.
     
  14. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    Trust me when I say bag limits is very possible
     
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  15. Rokbury14

    Rokbury14 I never have to feel like that again
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    Taking a newbie on the DD tomorrow. He's been bugging me since Christmas. Lol. Let's get some. I'll have the tulsa Sweatshirt on
     
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  16. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach ..RIP my friends
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    Kill it dude
     
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  17. Fat Spottie

    Fat Spottie Glorified Fuzzy Specialist
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    Damn it now I have to go, I’ll probably be fishing tomorrow btw.
     
  18. scisports

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    20F60EEF-307F-4BC3-A2F7-8E738928E82C.jpeg 24BF5D5D-3C12-4D05-BFB2-8CA11B1FA228.jpeg Good luck!!!
    It was fun for me and the family a couple days ago, not the most action but we nabbed a few.
    Too bad there was no smallest fish contest lol

    125B10A0-3E75-4BA3-A4D2-97B9941C1BE2.jpeg

    4DC335F5-54AB-4C75-83C8-EDFBC9E363DA.jpeg

    DA38D3A3-87DB-4560-B27F-B5145BA4F91F.jpeg
     
  19. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach ..RIP my friends
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  20. Slater

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    Agree, not numbers that make me very excited to jump on about especially how chilly its been lately....

    28 passenger, total 6 fish....
    OUCH!!!!!
     
    #20 Slater, Jan 5, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
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