Help out a brotha? Chinook fishing

Woodhunter

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 12, 2011
797
480
Port Angeles, WA
Name
Big John
Boat
Classic MAKO 22
Woodhunter - good to see you here :-) !!! PA is lovely. Kings thick yet ? i was on ifish the other day after a long Hiatus...here also...just got busy doing other things...i wished MarkMc well in retirement - that seemed worth rejoining the fray..a bit. i really should send you some of these...View attachment 1174236
Oh yea, eye candy!

A few Kings are around. Folks with local knowledge and old school experience have caught a few. Nothing like it was when I moved here in the late 1970's!

Sekiu has been better for large fish. But eventually they will move along the migration routes and show up here.

I like Tomics, hardware and trolling but my thing is serious mooching. Some neat mooching areas here, often deep, but on the right tides and currents the bait stacks and holds a few nice fish. I have caught them up to 300 feet deep on Mooching gear (somewhat specialized, takes a lot of rod to handle 8 or 10 ounces way down there and have sensitivity to detect a mooching nibble).

Like you I fish on the deck for kings: If pulling down riggers I try to keep the ball within 5 feet of the bottom, my release clip is about 4 feet above the ball.

Jigs work well here also. As always with any type of gear, you gotta find the fish!

Umm just think: Lots of secrets in this tackle center, 8 of the large 3700 Plano boxes and 3 smaller stuffed with plugs, jigs, hoochies and more!

 
Last edited:

Woodhunter

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 12, 2011
797
480
Port Angeles, WA
Name
Big John
Boat
Classic MAKO 22
In my experience the fleet of boats will often pile up at the downs current most end of the troll. Everyone trolls with the tide until they get to the end then they all turnaround, buck the current, and get stuck in a huge ball. Make runs back to the top and avoid the cluster of boats.
Yep. Same in mooching or jigging. Don't waste time bucking current especially if you find fish. Mark the spot, pull the gear up, run back, and make another pass. We call it "Running and Gunning".

The beauty of the Port Angeles area is there is a lot of room to fish. If I see a cluster of boats on a spot I wanted to fish, I just run to another location.
 

Woodhunter

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 12, 2011
797
480
Port Angeles, WA
Name
Big John
Boat
Classic MAKO 22
Back when I used downriggers a lot it was with a Hot Spot (red plastic, silver mylar) and I hugged the bottom. We could fish Green Point then in the summer for Chinook, man, lots of fish were there, it was a candle fish "home ground" and the bottom was easy for trolling. I ran the hot spots for a wide dodge instead of a full rotation. If things were just right I got sand/gravel marks on the bottom side of the flasher. That was where the fish were!!! Flasher 30 feet behind the wire.

This one was the "Go To" back then:

That is an OKI flasher from the 70's. Works as well as the Hot Spot.



 
  • Like
Reactions: Nosecrets

Wild Bill

Forgettable member
Aug 4, 2010
3,490
3,530
Camano Island
Name
Steve
Boat
Otter Craft
In my experience the fleet of boats will often pile up at the downs current most end of the troll. Everyone trolls with the tide until they get to the end then they all turnaround, buck the current, and get stuck in a huge ball. Make runs back to the top and avoid the cluster of boats.
Make sure you slalom through the boats with as big a wake as you can muster on the way back up too!
 

Wild Bill

Forgettable member
Aug 4, 2010
3,490
3,530
Camano Island
Name
Steve
Boat
Otter Craft
The only time I look at an actual speed reading for salmon is when fishing for sockeye. Other than that it is all about line angle to me. I troll faster than most.
 

Captain Decent

The Bert makes ‘em Squirt
Nov 2, 2017
1,634
2,389
38
Covington, wa
Name
Ryan
Boat
The Bert Makes ’em Squirt
I havnt had very good results trolling at the tradional 1.5-2mph I always hear about. Faster has been more productive for me and you can cover more ground.

also I tend to do better fishing areas that are not high profile spots. I think boat traffic is a factor. Places like Jeff head and possession obviously hold fish but I don’t catch as many fish There as I do in other spots. Possibly because everyone is competing for the same bait balls and shelves etc
 

Mpizzle

Bobber down!
Jul 18, 2010
1,194
752
Mt Vernon
Name
Matt
Boat
20’ Glasply
GPS speed less important than wire angle. Too much scope and you’re not hitting your depth but moreover if you’re running flashers they’re whipping way too fast and you’ve got a recipe for a tangle. You want your spoons to flutter, not roll.
 

Woodhunter

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 12, 2011
797
480
Port Angeles, WA
Name
Big John
Boat
Classic MAKO 22
I mostly mooch (Talk about slow!) but when I use the hardware I watch the gear in the water and adjust speed to obtain lure action to my liking. Then drop down to just off the deck. Adjust speed as necessary if no fish.

Many years ago I was invited to spend 5 days on a commercial salmon troller. Learned more about gear fishing in those 5 days than a decade of sport fish experience! Fishing out of Neah Bay, sometimes way off shore, sometimes turning south along the coast. I kept one of the hot 7 inch Tomics as a momento: Note the hook rub (showing good action) and the teeth marks. We ran the big 7 inchers on the bottom spreads, in addition to the big Kings often a nice Halibut would hit.





Shown with two new old stock 7 inchers:

 
  • Like
Reactions: Tomictime

Woodhunter

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 12, 2011
797
480
Port Angeles, WA
Name
Big John
Boat
Classic MAKO 22
Woodhunter - good to see you here :-) !!! PA is lovely. Kings thick yet ? i was on ifish the other day after a long Hiatus...here also...just got busy doing other things...i wished MarkMc well in retirement - that seemed worth rejoining the fray..a bit. i really should send you some of these...View attachment 1174236

I am game if you want to ditch a few, I collect the darn things.

For those that do not use them, the 4 inchers are killers in this area, I run them within 6 feet of the bottom.

MarkMc has posted some incredible fish info over the years, both Salmon and Halibut. I use his Halibut dropper, it works great. And I love his reverse herring hookup!



 
  • Like
Reactions: Tomictime

Tomictime

Crusty Old Salt
May 9, 2014
215
133
Poverty Bay & Carlsbad
Name
Jim
Boat
Boatless.....
Woodhunter, awesome old school built like a tank Mako, love it. We fished those in the great lakes..I have been fishing the Sound since 1986, just post on salty dogs because I like the relative civility...

SOG, cable angle, flasher rotation, lure moving, bait roll, etc...all go into the processor....and it aint one and done..

kudos on the Mooching..art and finesse

I actually dont enjoy much over 100’ out on the rigger...much prefer fishing the rocks and kelp of WCVI surfline....17-32’ on the rigger....the take is violent and they got nowhere to go except away !!!!
5CBF3348-26FD-48F1-AA2C-95C8A0F0E9AF.jpeg
E0E7E1B7-09AC-42FE-8EC4-D08C29C5C704.jpeg
ED7EB0A4-34B8-4DA0-BE88-C2C3F5E3892F.jpeg
 
Last edited:

Tomictime

Crusty Old Salt
May 9, 2014
215
133
Poverty Bay & Carlsbad
Name
Jim
Boat
Boatless.....
yes the Metal flasher absolutely have a place...I like the F4 Piscator, deadly with a polar bear hair Lambeth Herring fly...it’s a sparse fly that even Blackmouth seem to love..Of course the diamond plate or Chrome Nootka are more traditional and throw a massive sonic thump...
 

Captain Decent

The Bert makes ‘em Squirt
Nov 2, 2017
1,634
2,389
38
Covington, wa
Name
Ryan
Boat
The Bert Makes ’em Squirt
Best king fishing I ever had was about 20 years ago. Me and my dad in a van ripers skiff trolling coyote spoons with 1oz weight at about 6-8kts at 15 pulls in 15 (one-five) FOW. Off the hoko river.

We were unwittingly in closed waters but the statute of limitations should apply here.
 

Woodhunter

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 12, 2011
797
480
Port Angeles, WA
Name
Big John
Boat
Classic MAKO 22
Woodhunter, awesome old school built like a tank Mako, love it. We fished those in the great lakes..I have been fishing the Sound since 1986, just post on salty dogs because I like the relative civility...

SOG, cable angle, flasher rotation, lure moving, bait roll, etc...all go into the processor....and it aint one and done..

kudos on the Mooching..art and finesse

I actually dont enjoy much over 100’ out on the rigger...much prefer fishing the rocks and kelp of WCVI surfline....17-32’ on the rigger....the take is violent and they got nowhere to go except away !!!!View attachment 1174542View attachment 1174545View attachment 1174546

I grew up in Florida and SE Georgia, loved the Makos back then(1960's & 1970's), a family member had a 24. Fished it a lot as a kid.

Found mine 5 years ago, after looking for for years, old Makos are rare here. Boat was in good shape but need a lot of cosmetic work, I am almost done with the restoration. Scrapped the 200 Merc 2 stroke and repowered with the 200 Yamaha 4 stroke this January. A nice fishing boat, fits my fishing method and I can handle it solo.

Mooching and jigging, I fish deep, there are several areas with bait stacking structure around here that hold fish, 160 to 300 feet deep. Downriggers, I run the ledges west of PA around 120 to 160 feet deep, sometimes deeper. 160 feet is the "Go To" depth for me with hardware.

But Mooching is my thing. Some specialized techniques here that I learned from the old hands at the Paper Mill I worked in a long time ago. I will start a new thread after taking some photos. Simple is the thing, I use modified Penn 109's ('Cause you can back the reel up and feed the herring to the Chinook after the first light tap). Light tackle fun. Retro gear on a fiberglass 9-1/2 foot Lamiglass one piece that I wrapped in about 1980.



Speaking of catching fish, the water around PA has a lot of small squid showing up. Fish caught are gorged with squid. So match the hatch with your troll gear. Small white glow B2 squids are getting the nod. Stiff leader from flasher to the B2 for good action, I use 60 pound Yama. 30 to 36 inch leader.

 
Last edited:

Jaymo72

Well-Known "Member"
May 22, 2015
57
83
Port Orchard
Name
Justin Morgan
Boat
Tiderunner
I grew up in Florida and SE Georgia, loved the Makos back then(1960's & 1970's), a family member had a 24. Fished it a lot as a kid.

Found mine 5 years ago, after looking for for years, old Makos are rare here. Boat was in good shape but need a lot of cosmetic work, I am almost done with the restoration. Scrapped the 200 Merc 2 stroke and repowered with the 200 Yamaha 4 stroke this January. A nice fishing boat, fits my fishing method and I can handle it solo.

Mooching and jigging, I fish deep, there are several areas with bait stacking structure around here that hold fish, 160 to 300 feet deep. Downriggers, I run the ledges west of PA around 120 to 160 feet deep, sometimes deeper. 160 feet is the "Go To" depth for me with hardware.

But Mooching is my thing. Some specialized techniques here that I learned from the old hands at the Paper Mill I worked in a long time ago. I will start a new thread after taking some photos. Simple is the thing, I use modified Penn 109's ('Cause you can back the reel up and feed the herring to the Chinook after the first light tap). Light tackle fun. Retro gear on a fiberglass 9-1/2 foot Lamiglass one piece that I wrapped in about 1980.



Speaking of catching fish, the water around PA has a lot of small squid showing up. Fish caught are gorged with squid. So match the hatch with your troll gear. Small white glow B2 squids are getting the nod. Stiff leader from flasher to the B2 for good action, I use 60 pound Yama. 30 to 36 inch leader.

I love those old PENN 109’s. They are a tank of a reel for how small they are. I grew up fishing with my dad and grandpa out of pa and freshwater bay using them. Still have one or two. My grandpa caught a 100lb halibut back in the day with one while motor mooching outside pa.
 
  • Like
Reactions: TimeZoned

fishbadger

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Apr 6, 2012
252
208
WA
Name
fishbadger
Boat
.Grady Gulfstream 232 "Herd of Turtles"
Well OP, hopefully what you've gleened here is that fish are where you find them. Some great info in here. Shallow, deep, fast, slow, plugs, bait, plastic, bent metal. . .they'll eat damn near anything. The reason most folks don't catch is because there's no fish there at that time. Rule #1-10 is find where they are,

fb
 

Salmon King

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Mar 29, 2013
1,454
1,482
Everett, WA, USA
Name
Tim
Boat
Salmon King 21' Custom Pilothouse
Make sure you slalom through the boats with as big a wake as you can muster on the way back up too!
see Bill’s avatar for proper wake technique.:D

There is some really good advice in this thread. One more that I might add is more a theory I hold to: stay out of the crowd. Having 50 sets of flashers spinning and dr balls hitting the bottom will spook the fish. I find I hook up more often when nobody is close by. Also, if you happen to have a quality fish, there is good chance it will run across another boat’s gear and maybe get sawed off if you are in close quarters. Plus the fact that everyone swarms you when you hook a fish. No thanks.

Keep at it. A9 has sucked so far this year.
 

Phish'n Phool

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jul 15, 2010
258
87
Wet Side
Name
Par
Boat
Grady White Marlin
Great advice. Here’s one more, 90-10 rule. 10% of the guys catch 90% of the fish. Why? They’ve put in the time and mastered the details. Your day will come. Kings can be finicky, pay attention to all the details. Tides, leader length, rusty hooks, speed, depth, crap on the line, weeds screwing up your swivels etc... IMO, they all impact your catch rate. Coho are more forgiving than kings. Look around next time you’re out. 90% of the boats are on a boat ride and go home empty handed.
 

Woodhunter

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 12, 2011
797
480
Port Angeles, WA
Name
Big John
Boat
Classic MAKO 22
The 4 or so recent replies are spot on.

Spend the time to know your fishing area. Wring out all the details pertaining to tides, current, where the bait is as a result of said tides and current, depths. I hit my favorite area 2 hours before low tide, on a moderate current. If minus tides are about like this week the Mako stays in the barn. Why 2 hours before low? On the right current this is when the bait starts stacking up in the bottom structure eddies. Study the charts, find those golden bottom structure areas.

I have hooked Chinook anywhere from the surface to all depths including right on the bottom. Match the hatch, find the fish, put your bait or lure in front of the fish.

Can't find them in your favorite hole? Run and gun to the next place, give it a few passes, pick up and move to the next if nothing hits. I call it "Prospecting". Chinook move, remember the big Kings are on their final journey to the spawning grounds, stopping for a snack now and then. Here today, gone tomorrow.

I hate fishing in crowds. If one of my "spots" has a bunch of boats I just go to another. The fish are out there, go find them!