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Central California Rockfishing: Locations, Tackle, and tips on how to catch (continued)

Reels: In combination with the rod, the reel will have to match depending on the line weight and lure weight specified. For heavy applications reels like the Daiwa Saltiga or Saltist, Shimano Tekota, and Penn 320GTi will do the job nicely.



A closer look at the Abu Garcia Revo Inshore with the Power Handle, this is a great reel for inshore/coastal fishing


For light tackle you have a large assortment of reels to choose from. It'll depend on your budget and preference especially if you are deciding on using low profile baitcasting or round reels. Here are reels that we like to use when fishing for rockcod.


Here's the Daiwa Coastal Inshore low profile reel


Round reels: Shimano Calcutta TE, Shimano Cardiff, Daiwa Luna, Abu Garcia Record, and TICA Caiman.


Low profile saltwater reels: Abu Garcia Revo Inshore, Daiwa Coastal Inshore, and Shimano Curado 300D.


Zander vertical jigs in 90 feet of water using light tackle


Lines: Monofilament lines were widely used until the introduction of the braided line. Now braided or super lines are the stable of rockcod fishing though some charter boats will not permit the use of these lines. Braided lines, though not as abrasive resistant than monofilament lines, are thinner in diameter which means you can put more on your reel especially if you're going with low profile baitcasters, and because it's thinner and causes less water resistance you can cut through water at a faster rate and get your lure to the bottom quicker.


Braided lines are great for rockcod or big Lingcods like the one Zander holds here


Braided lines also have little stretch. That's a great benefit because when fishing deep the sensitivity is still there. You'll still be able to feel it when the lure hits the bottom or when a fish strikes. Another benefit to these super lines, no matter what brand, is the ability to get your lure back the majority of the time when snagged on the bottom. Because of the low stretch you can whip the rod and unsnag the lure even 100 feet down. With monofilament line you can whip the rod until you're worn out and still not unhook the lure from the deep ocean.


An assortment of rockfish can be had around Pillar Point, Half Moon Bay


Line diameter will vary and again depending on location, depth, and lure size. For instance, fishing waters 100 feet and below using a light rod and round or low profile reel, braided line of 50 pound test will do the job nicely. For those who fear that the fish will see your line, you can downsize to 30 pounds but I've been fishing with 50 pound test in various colors without any issues. If you're fishing abrasive areas, you can always make use of a monofilament leader.


Braided lines are thinner and less stretchy, providing better sensitivity when working the bottom


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