Ice Fishing Tips -Check your local regulations! > Salmon

hooking bait

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--- Quote from: nativetrout on Jan 31, 2007, 11:02 AM ---Thanx adkRoy, I'll try that. Are you still in front of the gills?

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No I am just behind them too.


--- Quote from: nativetrout on Jan 31, 2007, 10:51 AM ---I wish smelts would live a little longer when hooked up in the head area cause I think you hook more that way. Last weekend had a smelts head almost bitten off, but did not catch the fish. Obviously taken front the front and not swallowed yet. Any areas in the head region that allow the smelt to remain lively?

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I've been hooking mine through the top of the eye socket with my first hook and through the back behind the dorsal with my second hook of a quick strike rig.  Stay alive all day if they make it that long ;)

I hook mine through the eye sockets and fish em' all day.

Sometimes the smelts will die if you just look at them wrong.

They aren't a hearty fish at all.

I hook mine through both lips from the bottom.  Good hook ups and never killed one.

I'm kind of new to this forum and think it's great. I notice a few postings for useing small trebels with smelt. Althoug I'm sure it's effective, I would try to disuade it for anything that you may want to release. I fish a lot of lakes in Northern New England for salmon. Keepers are say 14" - 16" depending on the lake. Many places you catch a few shorts for each keeper and with the small trebels and swallowed hooks, the mortality rate for releases must be high. I'd recommend very shy gear for salmon. Depending on the lake, I like 6-10 pound flouro leaders 2'-8' long. Try snelling gamakatsu octopus hooks directly to your leader. Use a hook size to match your bait and mono size. For average 4" smelt and 6lb leader use a #6 hook. Go bigger or smaller to match the gear, get it?  Use smelt or shiners, whatever is locally prefered. I have always liked hooking the bait in the back just behind the dorsal fin but not too deep as to hit the backbone. Also Smelt tend to circle down there and sometimes swim up so you got to use a weight on the leader to keep them down but sometimes I use another swivel tied into my leader about a foot from the bait instead of lead. It helps with twisting is you get one of those demon posessed smelt that just want to swim in circles at 35 mph and is usually enough weight to keep the bait down and away from fouling up in your hole.  But hey what do I know, I just being a "newbie" and all.
Good luck!


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