View Full Version : getting butts to the boat

06-08-2006, 03:34 PM
Ive been reading alot of posts that talk about missing/losing alot of fish. Last time we fished butts we also missed/lost way to many fish for my taste.
Why are all of these fish being missed/lost? I know there are alot of you that land most of the fish that bite. What are the rest of us doing wrong?

06-08-2006, 03:40 PM
My experience was trying to set the hook hard on a halibut and pulling the bait right out of it's mouth. I could literally feel it "pop" out. I learned at that moment to just reel in, not try to rip his head off like a sturgeon hit.

06-08-2006, 07:10 PM
Thanks krome! All of the fish we cought were on a three way rig w/ poles in the holders. There was really no hook set. I was using a 15lb leader. Is this to small for their sharp teeth?

06-08-2006, 07:26 PM
halibuts take your bait tail first, unlike other fish that always eat their bait head first. If your live bait is lip hooked, then you need to give the halibut time to eat the whole bait. This is called letting the fish load up. when the fish is loading up just tip your pole and feed him the bait. Once they have a good hold then set the hook. hope this helps.

06-08-2006, 08:14 PM
Just reaffirming what ff_myrl said, you need to let the halibut "load up" or some time to get the entire bait in its mouth and preferbly for that fish to swallow it. When fishing a 3way, the butt will come up and grab the bait then sit back down on the bottom, pull the rod out of the holder and give it some line so the fish can munch down the bait, then once you feel the fish is on, give it a nice hook set. When setting the hook, remember to try and set the hook vertically instead of pulling to one side, this is a flat fish and their mouth position is different. I generally use 30lb leader or heavier when fishing halibut (never know when you are going to hook into that 40lb + fish) since they have really sharp abrasive teeth.

06-09-2006, 04:43 AM
Wow I thought all fish ate head first. Thats good to know. And yes we have been setting the hook to the side. And no we have not been letting them load up.
I think this will cure alot of the problem of missed/lost butts. Thanks for the help.

P.S. I will also be going up on my leader lbs

06-09-2006, 05:25 AM
Holding the rod rather then putting it in the rod-holder also helps, especially with a fast drift. I also feed them line (put it in free-spool for about 5 seconds then engage and set). Some guys also use trailer hooks to help prevent the short strikes.
Halibut are also commonly lost right at the boat. They tend to act like a tire when reeling them in and then when they see the boat they explode. They’ll catch you off guard if you’re not ready for it.

06-09-2006, 07:34 AM
One other thing to mention is when you get them close to the boat, don't pull their head out of the water if a net or gaff person isn't ready. Butts will shake like crazy when you pull their head out of the water. As long as you leave them slightly under the surface they are usually calm.

06-09-2006, 01:18 PM
use a hali rig.with 2 hooks.hit bottom crank up a turn, two or three and put your rod in the holder and drift..use a soft tipped rod with plenty power in the butt section.like a 7 1/2 to 8 foot 1 piece live bait rod with a fast taper.glass rods work good.this will give your rod room to load up when the fish comes up a couple feet and takes the bait then returns to the bottom..use heavy leader 25-30 they don't know the difference.they saw through line..you will see how many times the fish comes up on the back hook.it can make all the difference..if using live bait let your back hook hang free.

06-09-2006, 01:27 PM
I agree with Dimpala, DO NOT take their head out of the water. Also when you get one hooked up do not pump your rod, just a steady retrieve is all you need to and also make sure your drag is set right, not too tight but not too loose, just enough to set the hook into their mouth but not too tight so that you brake off immidietly.

06-09-2006, 02:57 PM
Hair raiser, you got a lot of good advise,theres an old saying" BOW TO A HALIBUT" If your driften bait and you get bumped free spool and give them line with just a little thumb to feed it out,if the taps are light feed em more if there heavy REEL!! do not hook set or Pump!!Slow and Steady!! If your on the troll have your drag set to give the fish some line on the Strike but enough to keep him following the boat and work him to the boat Slow and steady!!! Do not attemp to lift the fish at the boat,just walk back to pull him to the net man or gaff!! Best of luck!! CJ [smiley=captjack.gif]

06-09-2006, 03:52 PM
Thanks for all the help!
Im going to try all of the tip you guys gave. Will let you all know how I did .