Editor’s note: Capt. Joe Kent is currently on vacation, and will return to his column Sunday, June 16. This Reel Report originally ran February 7, 2018.
We have been addressing the jetties as a place to find good action on fish, and today we will focus on techniques and tackle needed for fishing around the rocks.
We mentioned early on that live and natural baits are, by far, the preferred baits. While artificial baits do work, most of the fishing is from stationary positions, meaning anchored, which gives a big edge to natural baits.
Rock walkers are the only group that I recommend using artificial baits as they are easy to transport along the rocks and do not have the burden that live shrimp and other natural baits present.
Live shrimp is the most popular bait; however, it is not always the best bait. Unless I am focusing on reds or some of the larger fish, live shrimp is my choice.
Depending on the time of year, there are three techniques that work well when using live shrimp. During the spring, from April to early June, shrimp worked either free-lined without a weight or under popping corks tend to work best. During the hot summer months, bottom bumping live shrimp tends to produce the best results.
All of those techniques work, and you may find that some work better than others depending on the circumstances. For example, if the tide movement is weak, free-lined shrimp may work better than bottom bumping. The key is if the shrimp can swim toward the bottom, not necessarily getting that far but deep enough to be seen by the schools of trout and other fish.
The weights used vary with the strength of the current. The objective is to have just enough weight to get the shrimp to the bottom and still allow maneuverability.
Typical trout tackle is fine; however, the reel’s line capacity should be higher than many of the typical casting and spinning reels offer. The line strength should be at least 12 pounds and preferably a bit higher.