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SALMON FISHING

 … a sample of SCRIPT from one of our instructional  Salmon  fishing videos

CHAPTER I: FLAT LINING PLUGS

ILLUSTRATION OF PLUG           

Flat Lining plugs, as it is called, is the relatively straight forward act of attaching your plug of choice, with a plug snap, to a leader of four to five feet, and then attaching this to a swivel which is in-turn is connected to your main line. The thicker the diameter of your main line the shallower the plug will run.  In the past, when monofilament was the line of choice, guides would go down as low as 15lb test to get depth on their flat line plugs, now with the thinner diameter braided lines, 50 to 80 lb. main line seems to be the most common choice. Your monofilament leaders should be between 40 and 60 lb. test with a length of approximately four to five feet.  The speed of the water, how far you put your plug out, and the nature of the plug itself all determine how deep you will go with your rig.  Faster water, longer lines, and bigger billed plugs can all get you deeper but if the water depth is much over ten feet you are going to need to add weight or a diver to your presentation.  Keep in mind that all salmon do not hang directly on the bottom, and their will be times smaller and shallower running plugs can do the trick.  

Rob Russell will start us out with our lessons on pulling plugs, as you’ll soon discover there is a lot to do with your plug before you put it in the water. 

PLUG PREPERATION

                                    SELLECTING PLUGS

                                    SETTING UP HOOKS

                                    TUNNING

                                    BAIT WRAPPING

                                    PUTTING OUT

FLAT LINE CONNECTION

                                    NICK AND CHRIS CATCH BIG ONE

CHAPTER: II           BACK BOUNCING

Again, every guide has their preference for how they set up their back bouncing rigs, as you have seen Rob has his own system that allows for quick changes.  The one shown here is the most common method, and is detailed in the book “Illustrated Rigging” by Robert Campbell.  The main line, 50 to 80lb. tough- line, is connected to a three-way swivel; also connected is a mono leader of 25 to 50 lb. test, that is three to four feet in length and has a 4/0 to 6/0 salmon hook, that is tied on with an egg-loop.  From the bottom of the three-way swivel comes a dropper of 18 to 24 inches.  The dropper is only 15 to 20 lb. monofilament so that if the bait or plug hangs-up the weight will break off and you won’t loose your entire rig. 

The usual style of weight used for back bouncing is the cannon ball sinker because it doesn’t hang up easily.  In general you will be working with 2 to 8 ounce sinkers but in extreme conditions you might go up or down depending on the water depth.

Some guides prefer just straight bait with the system; others might add a drift bobber of some sort to give a little additional buoyancy to the presentation.  Rob shows us how to quickly change his flat line rig to a back bouncing one, and together with Nick, demonstrates the technique.                        

BACK BOUNCING PLUGS

The back bouncing rig for plugs is nearly identical to the one used for bait.  The differences are that the length of the leader preferred is usually a little longer, four to five feet, and the dropper length is extended as well to between 18 and 36 inches.  These two adjustments are necessary because the plug is going to want to dive and this configuration allows it to ride higher in the water column. 

BACK BOUNCING BAIT

                                    CHRIS & NICK ON HOW BOUNCE                    

                                    NICK NICE FISH ON BOUNCE

DIVER AND PLUGS OR BAIT

There is another way to get both your plugs and bait down and that is with a diver.  This system will allow you to get below that 8 to 10 foot depth, down to as much as 20 feet when the diver is adjusted to it’s deepest setting.  Unlike back bouncing you are stuck on the depth you choose, but it allows for fishing lower points in the water column with anglers that are not skill at back-bouncing.  And if you have consistent deep water it can be the best way to go.  

To fish this system use the same weight and length of line and leaders recommended for your bait and plug back-bouncing systems.  A couple of swivels are added to allow for freedom of movement here because the diver offers up a little more dynamic resistance in the water. 

Like Rob’s rig, a free moving dropper is recommended; this is put above your main swivel and a bumper bead, and is attached to a smaller swivel.  The dropper line need-be only 12 to 18 inches in length and connected to the diver with a plug snap to one of the three depth positions on the fin of the diver. 

The other change from the conventional is that a swivel is recommended for the middle of your leader, this to allow for a little more freedom of movement for you plug or your bait.              

CHAPTER: III         DRIFT FISHING

Drift fishing, along with bank plunking, are probably the oldest forms of salmon angling and can be highly effective.  Rob is going to demonstrate drift fishing with his modified standard salmon rig.  The system recommended in “Illustrated Rigging is as follows: Again start with braided 50 to 80 lb. main line and then 25 to 50 lb. mono leader. 

The leader length is suggested to be 42 inches, but can be adjusted for water depth and flow.  In his book, “Illustrated Rigging”, Robert Campbell likes a chain swivel at the head of the leader to help eliminate line twists; which can easily happen while drift fishing.  At the end of the leader a drift bobber or spinner of some sort is required for buoyancy to keep the bait from hanging up on the bottom.  An egg-looped single or double 5/0 hook set-up completes the leader. 

CHAPTER: IV         FLOAT FISHING

Float fishing has recently become one of the most preferred forms of angling for salmon from both the bank and boats.  It delivers a very natural presentation of the bait to the fish and, though complicated to configure, allows the angler to cover a lot of water from a single position.

This method does not allow Rob to quick change out of his standard salmon rig and he packs a set of pre-rigged float rods for all his anglers. This is the float fishing system outlined in “Illustrated Rigging”. 

Starting at the top or on you main line the first requirement is a bobber stop.  There are pre-made stops but most often they are made from 20 to 30 pound Dacron line tied on with a nail knot.  The key is that this knot has to be able to hold firm where you place it, and be able to slide easily through your guides. 

Next comes a small bead, 5 to 8 mm, followed by a larger brightly colored bead or corky, size # 8, that acts as a bumper and a lets you see that your weight has dropped to the bottom. Now you have your float, 4 or 5 ounce foam-style recommended.  There are quite a variety of floats and you will quickly discover which ones you find easiest to cast and read on the water with.  A single snap swivel is placed below this, with the snap on top that is used to attach your weight.  Connected to the swivel is your leader, 24 to 36 inches depending upon water speed, and then your bait of choice on an egg-looped with a 4/0 to 6/0 hook.