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Trolling for Stripers How tos - instruction - Downriggers Planer boards - gear and other techniques and tips


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  #1  
Old 05-25-2004, 09:54 AM
Sea Wassp Sea Wassp is offline
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Merrimack River, Newburyport, MA
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Default The Hows and Whats of Trolling for Stripers

This is my first post so go gentle on me!
This will be my second year having my boat on the Merrimack River in Newburyport, Ma. I have had good success fishing the Mouth of the river, but not so good venturing out of the mouth. I would like do do more trolling this year and am looking for some input on equipment, technique, and locations. Any information/help is welcome.

Thanks in advance.
Everyone have a great Memorial Day weekend and take someone fishing!

Sea Wassp

PS: Thanks for this site. It is AWESOME!
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  #2  
Old 05-25-2004, 02:12 PM
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merrillizer merrillizer is offline
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wassp welcome to the board!

I troll sometimes in the Summer off Boars Head in Hampton. I throw out your average trolling lures, as well as some "speciality" things like Rapala Sliver's and Manns Stretched Sea Snake. We've had 30 fish days while trolling for Stripers off Hampton and North Hampton NH. But I'm not sure about Mass., I dont fish down there too often.
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  #3  
Old 05-25-2004, 02:49 PM
Sea Wassp Sea Wassp is offline
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Mr Bolt!!
Thanks for your reply. What type of gear do you use? I do head up to the Shores of Hampton quite often. So will give this a try.

Thanks
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  #4  
Old 05-25-2004, 07:11 PM
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merrillizer merrillizer is offline
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No prob :) For trollin I just use a 9' Ugly with an Okuma Avenger AV65. Nothing spectacular, but it allows me to put a whoopin on it and it doesnt fail me. My bro has a boat, its like a 16 or 17 footer, and I try to get him out when I can. Dont get to go out as much as I would like, but I definitely do my best to get out there on the boat when it gets real hot, like end of July and August. I like to hit the deeper water when its real humid.
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  #5  
Old 05-28-2004, 08:49 AM
GunnySniper GunnySniper is offline
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I think I can help you a little.
First and foremost; Tube'N worm. It is probably the easiest and most productive trolling method for shallow to mid- depth trolling. It works during any tide, and don't be fooled into thinking you can't catch large Stripers on them, or that they don't work at night. The only limitatipon you will have is the availability of Sea worms, the larger the better. Some guy's I know use the Berkley fakes, and catch some fish with them, I have yet to get a hit with one.
Get a chart for the area you are fishing, it will show you the bottom contour and structure. These are the MOST important things to know when trolling ANY method. All boat fishermen should own them anyway.
Fish finder? The only thing I use mine for is to match me up with my chart.
Tubes are a slow affair. I set mine up with mono, some guy's swear by Lead core. I use 1/2 to 1 Oz. in line trolling weights to a 36 inch leader to the tube. This allows the tube to spin properly. The trolling weight used is determined by the current strength, get it as close to bottom as you can. Troll WITH the flow. SLOOOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWW.
Along reefs in the early morning sunrise, 12 to 20 feet of water will have many Bass using the lack of bright light to hammer anything that comes around the reef they are hiding behind. I keep my rods in the holder with a moderate drag which allows the Bass to take some line, but more importantly it hooks itself. I have yet to get a gut hooked fish using this method.
I use tubes from 20-36 inches long with no jewlery, and unweighted.
I drop 4 rods at a time initially. Each rod set with a differant color
1 Red, 1 Flo Orange, 1 Black, 1 Black, Flo Orange tail. Each tube has a double hook set up, 5/0 in the tube, 6/0 true turn trailer direct to the 5/0 through the eye. Hook the worm by threading the head onto the true turn leaving the rest of the worm as a tail. I watch for the trend, the color that gets the hits, then put 2 rods away and troll 2 with the hot color. 4 Rods will get to be too much if you are in the school.
I also use an electric kicker on my 20' Starcraft, the noise reduction helps to not spook fish in skinny water and I have watched other guy's go without, when I am releasing 40+ fish in an outing. Wonder why?
More to come....................................
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  #6  
Old 05-28-2004, 02:06 PM
GunnySniper GunnySniper is offline
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Hard Baits...................
We all have our favorites, and the ones that seem to be top producers.
My belief is that you tune into that particular bait more due to confidence.
The first time I fished from shore without parental guidance, I hammered a nice 25 ponder on a Black/Gold Rebel. For a long time all I fished from shore was a Black/Gold Rebel!
When I got out in a boat by myself for the first time, I had no clue what to use for trolling, The old man was a bait fishin Comm. and only threw hard ware when a School was bustin. So, I threw that Black/gold rebel and dragged it around. Then I started fartin around with other stuff and trying new tactics. Trolling is a sloooooooooowwwwwww affair for Stripers.
Sometimes I'll kick it up a notch when things aint what they should be, like when I know there are fish, can smell'em, and feel their presence.
An important thing to remember is NEVER, EVER, troll a straight track.
Try long looping turns, or short sharp ones, always adjusting the lines accordingly, sometimes the plugs are right up to the prop wash, sometimes 50 feet back. I will use 12 foot surf rods as outriggers to spread the baits from the sides of the boat.
In a word EXPERIMENT!
Some good plugs to start with;
Gags GS Slammers, If ya got herring or pogies around, these troll like a dream, and have accounted for some real nice fish.
Gibbs Swimmers, and also the Atoms.
Bombers and Rebels work well for me, and don't leave out the Black/Gold Rebel Broken Back!
Big tins, dressed with heavy Bucktail when the Squid are around can account for lots of fish, I tend to kick it up when dragging these.
Yup, more to come...............
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  #7  
Old 05-28-2004, 02:16 PM
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merrillizer merrillizer is offline
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DOH! I forgot to mention those Tubes! A must have! Great write up Hammer :)
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  #8  
Old 05-29-2004, 09:38 AM
GunnySniper GunnySniper is offline
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Your out trolling, and things are not happening like they should.
Get into a rip along a bottom reef, at the head of it, shut down.
Tie a three way to your line, on one side drop a leader 2 feet to a sinker, on the other a 3 foot leader to a hook. Put on an Eel and DRIFT the rip keeping the lead bouncing bottom, with your line tight. Night or day this works!
Your cruising along and a school of Bluefish is slamming bait. Scramble for the poppers? NOOOOOOOOOOOO!
Get the snaggers out! get close to the school, but not so close you spook them down. Snag some bait. Menhaden snag best with a long steady sweep, instead of a sharp jerk. Get the bait in fast, so a yellow eyed devil don't get it.
Move the boat DOWN current from the marauders usually a couple hundred feet. Get that three way set up. Cut the head section off the bunker, and hook the head on. Drop it and drift, drag loose enough to feed a running hit. After about 20 to 30 yards of run hit the brakes.
Bet ya' got a Bass of 25 or better!
That school of Blues not only put a nice chum slick in the water, the heads they don't eat are the favorite part for a Striper.
Mother nature has a funny way doing things sometimes. Big Bass are lazy slobs that will eat from the buffet every chance they get.

The rods I use for the boat vary, I am a custom builder. For trolling and drifting I like short stand up style rods, usually 6 1/2 feet with a moderate action that allows the rod to pressure the hook set. I use light lines never more than 30 lb, most often 20. I like the Gti series by Penn, as well as the 4/0's. When I lighten up to 12 or 15 lb test, I use my Squidders.
I have recently purchased a couple of the Okuma silver lever drags, mostly with Yellow Fin in mind, That I will try out at the Block to get used to them. The lever drag seems a better way to put the brakes on. Will let you know how they go.
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  #9  
Old 05-30-2004, 07:39 AM
Sea Wassp Sea Wassp is offline
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Location: Merrimack River, Newburyport, MA
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Default Trolling for Bass

Hammer,
You should write a book!! Thanks for all the info. Put the boat in the Water yesterday and am going to try to get out this afternoon. I can't wait to give this all a try. Will keep you posted. Thanks again for the info and keep it coming. By the way, you have a 10 year old pretty fired up about getting some quality fish. THANKS

Sea Waasp
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  #10  
Old 05-31-2004, 09:42 AM
GunnySniper GunnySniper is offline
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Wassp,
10 year olds are what it's all about. I was very fortunate to be surrounded at a young age by lot's of Stripermen. Earlier in the post I mentioned my old man was a comm. That was back in the 60's-70's. Fish were everywhere, and we fished everywhere. From spring trips to Montauk, to the Fall gathering at the Vineyard. One day I'll put up some pics of those days. One photo has 11 adults and 1 ten year old, me. Behind us is a stack of Stripers representing 1 nights efforts. More than a cord of Bass, none under 40.
Fishing with the old man usually was no fun, it was all about the money.
He had a few older buds however that did enjoy fishing for the sake of fishing. I kind of got taken under wing. They taught me to tie flies, build rods, Make plugs, etc., etc., etc..
You are not far from me at all, and maybe we could get together to share some stories. I could go for hours about Ol' Jack. The man was bigger than life to me. The reason I share my knowledge is specifically due to something he said to me.
"When you learn from someone else, that knowledge does not belong to you, it belongs to the next person that needs it."
Your 10 year old has the attitude to become a Striperman, If I gave you the knowledge at the right time, and he follows that path, Then I have done right by him/her.
Tight lines, and please keep me posted on the progress.
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  #11  
Old 07-10-2004, 03:11 PM
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Striperjim Striperjim is offline
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Default Sea wasp striper pics

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  #12  
Old 07-12-2004, 06:13 AM
Sea Wassp Sea Wassp is offline
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Default Gentlemen - Thanks for the tips

Wanted to let you both know My son, his grandfather and I put some of your ideas to work this past friday and came up successful. We trolled outside the mouth of the merrimack with an "umbella" Rig and quickly landed two keepers. Actually it was all done by the Ten year old. He had several doubles and was beside himself! We then trolled back to the Marina and he boated about 12 More schoolies including several more duobles. He is hooked and so am I. In fact he spent the day on the ocean yesterday with his sister, granparents and two aunts and that is all he wanted to do, but only got a little time in and was rewarded with a few more schoolies. We are know going out to experiment with Tubes. Any thoughts?

Thanks for your help

Sea Wassp
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  #13  
Old 07-13-2004, 11:10 PM
Diablo Diablo is offline
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Default Fishing with tubes

Sea Wassp, tubes are a great choice for Stripers. I prefer to use a wire line set up when running my tubes. I find the wire cuts through the water better than lead core and gets me to the depths I want quicker than monofilament. The other great thing about fishing with wire line is that you feel every pound of that fish when you are reelin em' in, there is absolutely no stretch to it. You really need to experiment with the tubes to find which ones are working best. I keep an assortment of black, purple and red tubes in the box. They vary in length from 24" to 36", some are weighted and some are not, and also range from .5" to 1" O.D. I use varying lengths and tests of monofilament leaders, I vary it depending on where I am fishing. The monofilament leader will range from 30 lb. test for relatively sandy bottom to some beefy 50 lb. test for the rocks. I attach all leaders to the wire line using a 30 lb. barrel swivel and vary the length from 4'-15'. Again, this is where the experimenting comes into play, you really need to vary it up to find the combo that works. As a rule of thumb, when I use a long leader, generally greater than 8', I will use a tube that is weighted.

As an example, this past Saturday I was trolling an area that ranged from 14'-20', relatively sandy bottom, and was concentrating on a 9' hump where I had some previous luck. I like trolling the tubes slow, any where from 1.6 to 2.0 knots in low wind conditions. I also continuously reel in/out to adjust for depth variations. For this area, I was using 6' of 30 lb. mono and a 24", purple, unweighted tube. I would let out the wire until the 100' mark hit my rod tip in the 20' deep areas and bring it in to around to 60'-75' in the shallows. You want to try to keep it as close to the sea floor without hanging up on the rocks or picking up cabbage.

I prefer to use sand worms on my tubes. We have experimented with eel chunks, power worms, pork rinds and squid; however, in my opinion, nothing can compete with the worms.

In addition to the tubes, you may also want to try an umbrella rig or bucktail jig. For the umbrellas, i have both eel and shad set ups with varying colors. Again experimenting is the only way to find which one is appetizing for the day. On 7/7, I was trolling Elbow Ledge, off the coast of Newport, RI, we began using tubes but only produced one fish after numerous passes. We then switched to the umbrella rigs, first starting with the eels which did not produce anything. We then switched to the shad set up and we kept ourselves busy for the rest of the tide, even producing one double. It all depends on what the Stripers are in the mood for. As for jigging, I prefer to use a 3 oz., white, Smiling Bill bucktail jig with red Uncle Josh's pork rind attached. I use the same set up and methods as tubing but vary the rhythm and length of the jigging until I find a combination that works.

Hope I could help, Best of luck.
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  #14  
Old 10-07-2004, 01:19 AM
Riddler Riddler is offline
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Great info.......tube and worm + kayak= big bass for me.
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  #15  
Old 10-11-2004, 04:34 PM
JackD818 JackD818 is offline
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Default worms

I am really starting to fish again and i am wondering what are some of the good baits and tactics but if you say all of the codes and stuff for them i wont understand so if it is possible can you tell me what is good. I have been catching them off poppas and live eels thats it. are they any good tactics for eels other than just letting them swim and can you let them swim to the bottom or where (what level)? I do have a boat...if that helps with some of the info. Also any other good sites for MASS South Shore area?
Thanks a ton!
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