Offshore Fishing How To


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Live Bait Trolling (Bump Trolling)

Florida Sportsman’s Rick Ryals gives advice on how-to most effectively slow troll live baits while offshore fishing. It’s important to note that trolling live bait is not the same as trolling dead baits and lures. Live baits would quickly die if pulled at similar speeds. Not to mention, look very unnatural.

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Rigging a Live Bait

There is a long list of great baits found throughout Florida. One thing that can stump many anglers after catching your favorite game fish candy is, how to rig it?

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Preserving Soft Baits

Companies like Berkley Gulp! often sell scented baits in a tub of scented “juice” that marinates the baits while not in use. Florida Sportsman’s Rick Ryals explains how these tubs of the “magical juice” can be utilized to preserve and give old baits a scent that fish can’t resist.

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Choosing the Right Hook

In this FS Seminar, Rick Ryals tells us what the most important things are to consider when selecting the right hook for the job. Ryals explains which hooks are best for live bait and dead baits, and the key differences and advantages of using j-hooks and circle hooks.

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Trolling Hard Plastics for Pelagics

During this FS Seminar, Rick Ryals ventures 60 miles offshore of Jacksonville Beach in search of fast-moving pelagics. Bruiser blackfin tuna, wahoo, and dolphin gobbled hard-plastic lipped diving plugs, in favor of natural presentations.

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Using Scented Soft Plastics Offshore

In this FS Seminar, Rick Ryals shows us that heading offshore for tasty bottom creatures doesn’t always require picking up frozen baits or stopping to throw the net or sabiki rig, it can be as easy as grabbing a pack of scented soft plastic lures.

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Bait Trays Rigged and Ready

Keeping trolling baits fresh and durable is essential; bait trays make it a cinch. Bait trays are available in a variety of materials, as well as shapes and sizes specific to different cooler brands and dimensions.

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Nighttime Swordfishing Rigs

In the FS Seminar, Florida Sportsman editor Jeff Weakley joins Harry Schafer at Grand Slam Tackle & Marine Supply. Weakley and Schafer go over some basic rigging for catching swordfish at night.

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Save That Kite!

Fishing kites withstand a lot of abuse, but over time components may fail. Even the most experienced kite fisherman occasionally dunks a kite, and now and then a strut, string or crosspiece breaks. At least for recovered kites, there’s a good chance it will fly again. Torn ones won’t, but can be kept for parts. Here are some ways to save your kites.

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Top Shot

Monofilament is great stuff for trolling. Its elasticity gives valuable shock resistance to help keep the hook from pulling under the surging of a big marlin or other fish.

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Dropping for Deepwater Kings

A downrigger plan for big kings and other striking fish. More commonly, kings are scattered over sandy bottom, suspended at midwater depths beneath the bait schools, or perhaps holding over ledges or other deep structure.

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The Basics of Kite Fishing

Host of Reel Time Florida Sportsman Capt. George Gozdz shows us the basics of kite fishing. Kite fishing is a great way to present live baits to pelagics. Capt. George breaks down the essentials required for rigging the ideal kite fishing setup.

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FS Seminar – Tying a Bimini Twist

Andrew Jones joins the FS crew to explain some of the finer points of offshore big game trolling. During this FS Seminar, Andrew explains how to tie a bimini twist, a must-know knot for any offshore fisherman.

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FS Seminar – Trolling: Basic Boat Layout

Andrew Jones joins the FS crew to explain some of the finer points of offshore big game trolling. During this FS Seminar, Andrew explains how to set up the rods and reels in the cockpit of your boat for a worry-free spread of lines.

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Serve ‘em a Cold Sardine

Ocean fish of all sorts love these versatile baits. Spanish sardines are among the best live baits when they’re available, but don’t discount the frozen ones. Partyboats, charter skippers and private anglers have been using them for a long time.

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Targeting Blue Runners

When it’s calm enough, troll the beaches to pick up awesome bluewater live baits. Abundant around the state, a 6- to 9-inch runner is perfect for big kings, sailfish, wahoo, you name it. Fishing in hard-pressured Palm Beach County, I’ve found one method that, with a little tweaking, quickly accounts for enough runners to fill a day: trolling with small jigs.