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Discussion Starter #1
Well given the success of the Jersey crowd's night time scratching sessions with soft plastics. I fancy giving it ago. Only trouble is the only real venue has quite a drop from the harbor wall to the water. I have tried with small jigsheads and lightheads just get swept into the wall, long before getting to the bottom. So I thought about trying dropshotting either one or two small grubs (i have 1.5-3.5" grubs) which would allow me more ability to sort the weight required. I was wondering what the now successful Jersey crowd thought of this idea?? Worth trying??
Anything tips or hints would be gratefully received. I am aiming for an after dark tide later this week (fingers crossed).
 

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Should have seen this coming, and I probably did, just not so fast.

I think between us, we can share some techniques. Remembering that your marks aren't ours and you have to often
be innovative. This happened last night with the long sliding fall. Fish wanted it that way. It was, on the night, the best
presentation. Obviously, given similar circumstances, I'd start by following suit. Maybe a repeating pattern for the area.

Watch this space as I'm sure Paul B and other soft bait nuts will chip in.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I wish some of your marks were mine Keith!! Just greedy me!

If I could get closer to water level, then I sure the jigheads would find the fish. But with 25' plus of wall about the water, the 10lb PP was causing too much sail effect (which will work later in the year for macs and gars though). Breeze stopping the jighead getting any depth and pushing it into the harbour wall. I thought that dropshotting might be the answer, after all they dropshot largemouths in deep water with reasonable amounts of lead. Might work??
 

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Same as me Dave. With so much distance, even a very fine braid can pick a light jighead well up, almost out of the water.

I think we can probably increase jighead weight though, while keeping lures small. 14g articulated jig (allowing a smaller hook) attached to small lure I think could still work. Its obviously not so much in the way of finesse, but will probably be necessary in some conditions. Got to adapt to our own surroundings and marks.

Update: ...although saying that, fishing a heavier, what could be considered unbalanced, jighead with a small lure does contradict what Keith has just said on the catch reports thread. With such a difference in heights (harbour walls), I'm not sure what else to do though. Lightweight like you've said, just isn't possible.
 

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Dropshotting is a wonderful technique. Not from the vertical. Again, I must emphasise the importance of not overworking the plastic.
Try it alongside harbour walls for sure. Small 2 and 3" split tailed fluke's probably best if vertical.

However, go off vertical and think. Your SP will not hang horizontal. Time to try a wacky presentation or a
SP that defies the need to be, horizontal. Think shrimp, crab etc..
 

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Same as me Dave. With so much distance, even a very fine braid can pick a light jighead well up, almost out of the water.

I think we can probably increase jighead weight though, while keeping lures small. 14g articulated jig (allowing a smaller hook) attached to small lure I think could still work. Its obviously not so much in the way of finesse, but will probably be necessary in some conditions. Got to adapt to our own surroundings and marks.

Update: ...although saying that, fishing a heavier, what could be considered unbalanced, jighead with a small lure does contradict what Keith has just said on the catch reports thread. With such a difference in heights (harbour walls), I'm not sure what else to do though. Lightweight like you've said, just isn't possible.
In 25ft of running water, 6 or 7g with the added weight of the soft plastic is often enough if fishing on the drop styles.
Swinging around near bottom last night I went to 14g but bottom contact and losses increased 10 fold.

Light braids, proper rods and correct drag settings allow for 3.5g with 3" slug baits in 10ft of sea water no worries. As long as you can maintain contact and feel the jig hit bottom, you are winning. Adjust accordingly.
 

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Will have to get out and experiment.

The wind is my main problem though, from my little try a couple of weeks ago. Even on 0.8 Yamatoyo, the bow in the braid created by the wind was immense. The water is fine, but it's the external factors that made it difficult.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Keith,
How about a carolina rig, with split shot for weight say 6-8" up the line from the softy, would make fine tuning the weight easier. Plus would have more action from the tide/swell??
Would I be right in guessing that the aim would be to find the absolute miniuim weight required to reach bottom (or close to) and then adjust through the tide changes??
 

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However, go off vertical and think. Your SP will not hang horizontal. Time to try a wacky presentation or a SP that defies the need to be, horizontal. Think shrimp, crab etc..
Keith, have you thought of using a knotless knot (Hair rig style) with a long long hair leading to your drop shot weight. The line then runs directly along the same path as the hook wire so when it's at 45 deg the SP should be sitting horizontal. Should work when drawn towards you from distance.

quick sketch...
 

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I had a look down the harbour this afternoon and there might be too much sea running to fish very light. Obviously it will have chance to die down a bit by tomorrow.
Keith, part of the problem we have where we are planning the fish is that we cannot fish in any shelter so the action of the waves and tide together will make fishing very light possibly too difficult. In calmer weather it would likely work ok. What happened to flat calm moonlit nights? Hopefully when we have sorted out the method we can fish lighter.
There will be two of us so we will have the chance to experiment a bit.

What are the bites like from the fish you guys have been catching? Are you finding any patterns regarding most productive types of lure? Or colour?

Mind you, if I catch a rockling I will be going straight home!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Mike,
If I get a rockling, I will be happy. To start with any and all bites will be welcomed.
Hmmm I wonder what the lure caught Rockling record is (snigger snigger)
 

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Keith,
How about a carolina rig, with split shot for weight say 6-8" up the line from the softy, would make fine tuning the weight easier. Plus would have more action from the tide/swell??
Would I be right in guessing that the aim would be to find the absolute miniuim weight required to reach bottom (or close to) and then adjust through the tide changes??
Yes, use Carolina rigs quite frequently Dave. Can be a great presentation.

Andy Mason said:
Keith, have you thought of using a knotless knot (Hair rig style) with a long long hair leading to your drop shot weight. The line then runs directly along the same path as the hook wire so when it's at 45 deg the SP should be sitting horizontal. Should work when drawn towards you from distance.
Not tried that but will. Looks clever. Thanks.

Mike Kennard said:
What are the bites like from the fish you guys have been catching? Are you finding any patterns regarding most productive types of lure? Or colour?
Shad styles in 3"-4", Curly worms 1.5 - 4", Straight slugs 3 and 4", Fluke tails 2-4" the former 2 for Pollack mostly and the latter 2 for Pollack drifted, swung or slid back and for Pouting when bumped across the deck etc.

White has been a good colour as has the brighter greens, both under lights.
Over sandy bottoms, pumpkins and slightly heavier worms salt impregnated have scored for me.

Remember, still all very new, trends could change as some species become more active and targetable.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Paul,
Actually I would quite like to catch one of those, that is a monster though I understand. Oh I will give it a try!!
 

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Hi Dave

I've seen a few caught around that size (not on SPs yet). They are solid little fish, hard as nails, but they are fans of very rough ground...Maybe when we get to those marks on one of our shore SP exploits we'll get one.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Well we have some very rough ground, do they get caught in the intertidal zone, or do they tend to stay below the low tide marks?
Strangely they look somewhat like a smaller version of one of the fish that the japanese fish for under the hard rock fish group (next size up from light rockfish)
 

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IME the bottom end of the intertidal range to below LW.

They must be catchable.
 

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Pinnacle might be worth a shot when we get some settled weather. There is plenty of Rockling down there, big Pouting and decent Pollack too
 

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If we go as our now usual group we could tackle both sides.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
So are rockling a purely a nighttime species??
I ask as there seems to be plenty around here at the moment, having heard many reports of people catching them and little else.
 
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