Lingcod -

Catch Quality Rockfish and Lingcod with this Proven Technique

When I'm on the water fishing for rockfish and lingcod, I have a 2-step system that consistently helps me catch nice fish. Whether I'm on a party boat or a private boat, I’ve had great success with this approach over the years.

To begin, I always have two rods rigged and ready for every stop. One heavier rod equipped with a 20mm RattLing Round at the bottom and a 223-teaser tied 18 inches above. The other setup is a lighter rod, with only the 6oz 50cal rattle jig tied on. When we get to a spot and are ready to fish, I start with the heavier setup and drop the RattLing Round straight down. Once the bullet lure hits the bottom, I like to do small, quick jigs to make the 20mm bounce on the rocks to create a lot of noise to attract nearby fish. I then switch to classic vertical jigging with long, fast pulls, followed by slowly letting the jig back down. This tactic is effective because often, when you stop, it is because fish are marking on the fish finder below you. So that is where you want to fish, where the fish are. Additionally, the heavier jig usually reaches the bottom first and if there's a hungry lingcod around, they will likely see your jig first, increasing your chances of a bite.

The second step is to switch over to the lighter setup. I cast the 50cal ahead of the drift and work it back towards the boat. By casting ahead of the drift, I can cover more ground, and the jig will be seen by fish before the boat even reaches them. Similar to fishing with the 20mm, I try to do a few quick jigs when the jig hits the bottom to make noise. I use two techniques when retrieving the 50cal, both of which have proven to be efficient. One is doing fast, long pulls to entice reaction bites, followed by letting the jig fall to the bottom. The other is keeping the jig close to the rocks, bouncing it around to create as much noise as possible. It's important to be aware that as you work the 50cal back in, your hooks will be at a sharper angle, so avoid letting it sit on the bottom for too long and get it snagged.

I do adjust the loadout depending on fishing conditions. For shallower water, I might start with the 50cal but still drop straight down and vertical jig. I avoid casting the 50cal when fishing in water over 300 feet deep, opting instead for the 25mm or 223 teasers on dropper loops. While I use all the jigs I make, these are my go-to methods and jigs I use.

Good luck, and I hope you have as much fun and success with my bullet lures as I have!


Jon Takahashi

Owner of the Fishing Armory


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