Far Back, More Lines = More Fish
By Richard Welton
Most small boat anglers are challenged enough trying to run 4 lines but running 2 more means 50% more fish and is easy if you use common sense. When putting trolling lines out, ALWAYS put the ones closest to the surface out first and longest. The medium depth lines go out next and closer, with the deepest lines going out last and closest to prevent tangles. If you put the short deep lines out first, the lighter ones sink to the bottom as you put them out and rise up to their running depth as soon as you put the reel in gear. If that shallow line has crossed under a deep line as you let it out, they become tangled as soon as the second one rises up. (Remember, your best fishing buddy is helping you get started by zigzagging the boat as you try to get the lines out.)
I always have run the two deep wire lines with double rigs of Mojos and 9-inch shads, spoons, umbrellas or Tomics accompanied by two shallow rods rigged with 4 to 8-oz. in-line sinkers with 9 inch shads, Tomics, umbrellas or spoons.
In recent years, I have started running 2 extra lines way far back with just the 9-inch rigged shads. I use a special rig for these consisting of a 6 and a half-foot rod with a Penn 320 or 4/0 reel. Use the longer rods to keep the lines up and out of the way in the forward rod holders. Line coming from a longer rod will clear the tips of the shorter deep rods.
I had some old 4/0 high speed senator reels with 50 lb Dacron line so I removed about 100 yards of Dacron and tied 150 to 200 yards of Power Pro or Tuff Line super braid line. The high speed reels make it quicker (less complaining from the crew) to reel these way far back lines in when you are moving or going home.
I use the 100-lb super braid because it is invisible to the fish, goes deep and does not stretch. Trying to set a big hook with 100 yards of cheap stretchy mono line can be tough as it acts like a rubber band. You dont have to fish the drag any tighter with the heavy braid but you dont lose many big fish or expensive lures due to line breaking. Any super braid under 100-lb has such a tiny diameter that working big fish in a hurry is dangerous and can cut your hands.
On the working end of the 100-lb super braid, I tie direct to 7 feet of 80 to 100-lb mono. This acts as a wind on leader and makes it easier to tie lures on as well as handle the fish in the boat. Netting a fish with wind on leaders is much easier as the netter does not have to use hands to leader the fish. Just push the rod tip up with your shoulder or elbow and use both hands to scoop the fish up.
I prefer the Chesapeake Bay Lure Company 9-inch rigged shads as they have a big hook strong enough to tow a car. I have had plenty of other brand shads hooks straighten out on nice fish. So, I use the best for really big fish.
When using these extra way far back shad rigs, loosen the drags slightly (not too loose to set the hook) and put the clicker on. Then put them up in the outer rocket launcher rod holders. This gets the rods and lines out of the way as you work the other lines and you would probably forget about them if it wasnt for the clicker going off as those big fish scream line off! Dont tighten the drags up too much as you need to let the bigger fish do their thing so they dont rip the hook out.
Lots of solitary big fish cruise the surface but they move away and out to the sides as the boat approaches so most anglers dont catch them. It is imperative to get these surface lines way back to give the fish a chance to close back in behind the boat. Usually the first several fish of the day will come on these surface lines until the other boats put the fish down. Later, as you slow the boat to land deeper caught fish, these way far backs sink some and go off again. Darn!
Way Far Back extra lines mean more fish. Try them.
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