Lingcod Thread

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Steve Knapp, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. Lingcod season is just around the corner and I am going to try to find one this year on the fly. I found a couple last year with a buddy of mine, but we were using gear. I'm building a new head for my 8 wt and tying up some big ugly flies. Last year chartreuse was a great color for Rockfish and Lingcod, so I'll start there.

    I don't know much about this fishery, so I figured I'd start this thread.

    Fish pics, flies, techniques... anything Lingcod related.
  2. Badass Yak hair Lingcod fly.

  3. Just seeing him tie that fly realllllly makes me want to go ling fishing. I've done it with gear many years ago, but would love to chase these things with a fly. Anyone have a boat that needs an extra deckhand?! I'll tie up a few of these to share! (Maybe some big bunnies too, but these yak clousers look way more easy to throw).
  4. I think you might want something a little heavier than an 8 wt., especially if you expect to catch one as large as the ones in the video. They will tear you 8 wt. in half. I'd think 9 wt. minimum but probably a 10 wt. with one big, heavy reel.
  5. I used to dive and for what it's worth, all the Ling's I came across (summertime in the San Juans) were laying on shelves, sunning themselves in about 30 feet of water. When the ones I saw got spooked the just went to a deeper shelf. Hope this helps and triggers some ideas. By the way, at least in the San Juans, Greenling can be found on shelves also, but they were just a little shallower. They were also good eating. Ah, the old days, when you could have fried Greenling, Lingcod, rock scallop and abalone for breakfast. And then go see what was for lunch. :rolleyes: Now I think it's time for another brew!
  6. tie up some of your squid patterns
  7. Yeah I am hoping to get a trip or two in to Neah Bay this summer. Will definitly be tying up some big ugly clousers amoung other patterns.
  8. lingcods love kelp greenling.... ive seen lings come all the way to the surface to get a chance at a hooked kelp geenling, the hardest part about lingcod fishing is getting your fly to the lings before a rockfish gets fun stuff
  9. I'm getting excited to return back to Washington. First good weather day after I return the truck will be heading west on Hwy. 112.

    I think these dogs should hunt. I've been playing with flies like these in the water pike fishing and the feathers have a ton of movement vs. many other materials.

    Steve Rohrbach likes this.
  10. Steve Saville gave good advice on the 8 wt. You have to yard these things out of rocks and seaweed. I've had eights wrapped around my boat hull like a taco shell. I haven't broken a rod yet, since they usually fray the line on the rocks by their lair within 20-30 seconds.

    Gary Sandstrom and I had this same conversation a couple of weeks ago, and agreed that 12 wt. is more the threshold.

    And patterns? If it moves they'll likely bite it. I use bright, stubby clousers tied on brass tubes with big lead eyes and 30' of T17.
    Steve Rohrbach likes this.
  11. Sand Lance Patterns

    I've landed them on as light as a B2X 7 wt. but NOT recommended. 9wt-11wt is recommended. We encourage releasing all our Lings to provide for the future viability of this wonderful fishery.
  12. My go to ling cod rod is an Sage RPL 11 wt., 9'. It has plenty of backbone yet is still pretty light. It was a custom job built with a rubber fighting but as opposed to cork and it's two pieces instead of four. I also use it for other bottom fish because you never know when you hook a rockfish if a ling will want that rockfish for lunch. It's happened a couple of times and we boated the ling with its mouth wrapped around the rockfish.
  13. Anyone gonna try a waking greenling pattern this year for the big top-water take?
  14. Great info guys, thanks and keep it coming. I'll have to test the 8 wt since its my heaviest rod, and I don't see a 10 wt in the budget just yet. If it blows up, it blows up... it'll be a good story anyway!

    I seem to remember a book being recommeded last year that talks about color visibiltiy at different depths... any ideas?

    I'll always be testing topwater patterns 2kayaker, I got a bullhead on a popper last year, now why not a Ling!
  15. There are depth restrictions in some areas so be sure to check the regs before you pay out your line and a hundred yards of backing to get down.
  16. Steve -
    Here in Puget Sound I have fished my 8 wt (an even a 7wt) a lot for lings with decent success. With those lighter rods I don't like weight flies. Instead I rely on my lines to reach the fish. I have been using yak hair for my ling flies for approximately 20 years and love it. Use the method shown in the vid (double back the hair) to produce 7 to 10 inch flies; in addition to the color shown I really like chartreuse and white and brown and orange. I usually tie my on 3/0 or 4/0 swaish hooks. I use kevlar thread as well though usually opt for red/orange thread and use 5 minute expoxy for increased durabiity. Lings are tooth critters that can tear flies up quickly. With the yak hair and expoy my flies usually have a life of 20 to 25 lings which is a good day here on the sound if I don't lose them sooner. I use a 12 inch bite leader of 30 or 40# mono and a 6 foot leader with 15 pound tippet.

    Here is the sound have had the best luck on shallow flats (20 to 40 feet), reef tops, rock or rip rap walls and kelp beds. Here in the sound the lings get pressured quite a bit and flies can provide a nice change up. Not uncommon in late season that flies out fishing gear or even live bait on waters that can be effectively fished with flies. Not only are unweighted flies easier to cast they work really well "walking" down the walls and when coupled with spun deer hair heads (I like thumb size ones) they will hang and hover on the pause which is deadly on pressured fish.

    With that 8 wt and T-14 head I have taken lings from as shallow as 4 or 5 feet down to about 50 feet. The hardest part of fly fishing for lings is find those spots where you can effectively fish. If I were going to consistently fish much beyound 30 feet I would look into using a lead core head and do away with some of the niceties of the presentation. I spend time going over charts looking for potential spots and do most of my exploring with gear and lead head jigs (way quicker) waiting to break out the fly rod for those spots I feel has the best potential for tossing bugs. With my homework done double digit days are a reasonable expectation and can often hand pick a 30 incher for the table and have taken a few over sized fish. With the increased pressure on th lings the last 5 or 6 years I have been spending more time in the San Juans.

    Enjoy your efforts to expand your fly game!

  17. Thanks for the informative post Smalma.
  18. I'll second Jonathan here, thanks a lot for all the info Curt. You described my main objective, 20-40 feet of water within the Central Sound area, and the gear I'll be using, 8 wt with T-14. Thanks for the leader breakdown as well, great advice. Got some tying to do and some charts to study.

    Sounds like Neah Bay will have to happen at someday, I've never been out there.

    Now I've just gotta buy beer for all my buddies with boats!
  19. What kind of flylines are you guys using? T-14+ to a running line? Any advice as to how to spool up?
  20. I have a Rio running line that I pair up with 30' shooting heads, loop to loop.

    The T-14 (30' @ 420 grains) I picked up has loops on both ends, but you have to cut it back to the right length to get the correct load, unless you want the full 420 grains. I'm looking at 300-325 for my 8 wt, so I'll cut it back to the appropriate length and then nail knot 6" of 25 lb mono to the T-14 and finish it with a perfection loop for my leader conection.

    I'm sure there is other ways, but this has worked great for me so far. Hope it helps

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