Capt Beall disagrees with my hook sets!!
By Ron Brooks
As I figured, I would get some grief about hook setting this week. I received and email from a California Captain regarding my hook setting methods – you can’t set a hook too hard, remember?
Captain John Beall is a 100-ton Coast Guard captain taking San Diego’s long-range boats off of Southern California and Mexico in search of yellowfin tuna, wahoo, and Pacific yellowtail. Here is what he writes:
"Don't ever tell a tuna fisherman who knows what he is doing to set the hook. The difference between Salt and Fresh. All salt water fish set the hook themselves. Let them run with the bait, start applying light pressure on the spool, give them a 5 count, put it in gear and start reeling for all it's worth. The fish feels the light pressure and turns away from it moving the line and hook to the corner of his jaw. When you start reeling, the tuna or yellowtail will feel the hook, make a run and set it themselves. Marlin and bass are a different deal – you have to set the hook. It took me a few months to learn this when I started fishing the west coast - I was a swinger. Finally, I got it down. Now on trips when our customers set the hook we go "strike one, swing and a miss". Makes some of them mad, but I'll take a rod that's been bit and show them how a smooth run, pressure, and reeling will get them every time."
I’ll take his advice – although he may have been fishing with tuna hooks or circle hooks. But I do have to give in to his success as he has sent me a ton of pictures of some very nice tuna and yellowtail!
Some day I would like to get him in a bass boat and really show him how to set a hook!