JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

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JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby EC NEWELLMAN » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:35 am

Over the last 2-3 years a couple of fishermen out of New Jersey have been fishing with a rig that at first glance looks a little 'hookey' but in fact, this rig has been so deadly in catching fluke that it has surprised many captains and fishermen who fish with it for the first time. I was shocked to see how productive it is, and this was after hearing a number of times how well it works.

Before we star,t I like to point out that there was a good deal of fishing time put in, with countless trial and error of different combinations used in coming up with this rig. Though some fishermen may feel a few shortcuts can be made which may at first save some money, it will also result in less quality fish in the box.

I also will add, that this was a so called 'secret rig' for a while on till someone wrote about it on one of the NJ fishing boards, so for those who feel that I am letting out some 'state-secret' here, just do a little research on your own to see that this fluke rig was discussed a while back. I am just bringing it to the attention to fishermen here who may not know about it.

Below is the rig in question, and then we will go over the other particulars on what to buy, how to tie and then use.

Image

THE RIG & TERMINAL TACKLE NEEDED


This is the Hi-LO GULP RIGGED FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG.

It requires (Ocean fishing):

- Bucktails in the range from 4, 6, 8 oz
- GULP 6" Curly Tail (#1 choice) or Swimming Mullet
- 4/0 Baitholder hook

Particulars about this rig:

- As far as the bucktail you use, you do not need a expensive bucktail especially when you are working this rig around reefs and rocky areas. It is more important in having the right weight of the bucktail then in the color of the bucktail or how much the bucktail cost.

1- It does not make a difference using swinging hook bucktails. In fact for fluke fishing, it may be a detriment in hooking short striking fish.

2- Depending on which manufacturer of the bucktail, as the weight of the bucktail goes up, usually the hook size goes up. Many of the heavier bucktails are made for striped bass fishing and have a bigger hook then needed for fluke fishing. There are local bucktail makers who specifically make Bucktails for fluke fishing, and YES, the Spro bucktail does work fine in the heavier weight sizes, if you cannot find some of the local custom made bucktails.

3- Stick with the standard colors of white, chartreuse, hot pink. I cannot comment about the blue and purple hair bucktails, but I would imagine later in the season, these darker shades will also be fine to use.

GULP:

Image

It is amazing how the GULP scented soft plastics work, and this was the area where there was much trial and error done. The standard curly tails we use for cod in 4" & 6" size do not work as half as well as the GULP scented curly tails, to the point where the GULP noticeably out fishes the standard curly tails we use for cod. Leave those other curly tails home.

1- The preferred soft plastic is the Berkley Gulp Curl Tail 6"

2- Preferred colors are WHITE, CHARTREUSE, PINK SHINE, GLOW WHITE

3- The 6" SWIMMING MULLET is the other alternative

4/0 BAITHOLDER HOOK


On the high dropper on the rig, a 4/0 size Bait holder hook is tied.

1- The Baitholder hook has slices on the shank which prevents the GULP curly tail or swimming mullet from sliding down

2- The hook we use is the OE TACKLE 4/0 BAITHOLDER hook

TYING THE RIG


This is a 'no swivel' rig as far as tying it. There is a reason this came about since the rig was specifically designed to be used around the rocky and reef areas of the upper New Jersey coast.

1- Use approximately 30 or so feet of any tough monofilament fishing line

2- Tie the bucktail on the bottom with a uni or palomar knot

3- Make a dropper loop roughly a foot from the bucktail

4- Insert the 4/0 Baitholder hook on the dropper loop

5- Add the 6" GULP curly tail on both the Baitholder hook and bucktail

For those using the thicker GULP swimming mullet

1- You can cut the swimming mullet lengthwise and place it on the bucktail, so that you are making 2 swimming mullets out of 1 whole one

2- Use the full size GULP swimmer mullet on the HI dropper with the Baitholder hook

WORKING THE RIG - Hi-LO GULP RIGGED FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG


This rig is worked in a similar fashion as you would work a HI-Lo rig for fluke.

1- Slow lifts up and follow the rig back down (try not to just let the bucktail drop down)

PAY ATTENTION TO STRIKES


This rig was designed for fishing around rocks and reefs, areas where you are targeting bigger fluke. Of course smaller then the legal NY minimum size of 20.5 inches will hit the rig, and at times you will have numerous strikes as you are drifting along.

1- Replace the GULP curly tails as the tails are torn off (this will be very common)

2- Stick when you get a good bite

IF WORKING THIS RIG IN ROCKY & REEF AREAS


For those who use this rig where it was intended to be used, you will lose a number of rigs through out the trip. This is to be expected!

- Bring a good amount (6) of each size bucktail in 4, 6, 8 oz

- Do not be surprised to loose up to 10 bucktails on a full day trip

THE REASON WHY THERE IS NO SWIVEL ON THIS RIG


Due to all the tackle lost when fishing the rig on and near rocks and reefs, was the reason why the rig is tied with straight mono, since you will be constantly re-tying rigs throughout the fishing day as you get hung up.

- As you loose your bucktail rig, re-tie a new bucktail rig from what is left of your mono line

- As you work through the original 30 or so feet of mono, you will come up to your braided line (which most use these days)

- Put on a new fresh 30 foot section of monofilament line and start again, unless you are fishing with straight mono

- No swivels used

- Attach the monofilament line to the braided line using a Albright knot




OUTFITS


Though many are not particular in this area (you can use an off the rack light Shakespeare Ugly Stick), there are a number of blanks that can be used, and both RALPH RODWINDER and CAPTAIN RICHIE could offer you a number of outstanding choices for a custom built fluke rod.

- Bring one outfit for working lighter bucktails and one that can work the 8 oz bucktail

- Heavier blanks are used if one is working the channels in the NY BIGHT or water deeper then 60 feet

- Graphite blanks are preferred, but their are many e-glass alternatives

- A standard bait casting reel is all you need, but any reel the size of a Newell 220 works

TO SUMMARIZE


- GULP rules on this rig - Don't 'chinz' here, this is the key

- Ocean fishing use 6" GULP

- Focus on having the correct weighted bucktail

- No swivels, tie this rig direct

- If working around rocks and reefs, you will lose tackle but you will see more quality and trophy fluke

- Bring a good amount of bucktails and packages of GULP

- Bring one lighter and heavier outfit

I HAVEN'T MENTIONED BAIT?


Yes, and I have saved this for the end of this discussion to make a point. It has been pointed out to me that time and again, the GULP rig out fishes any type of bait rig, or even in tipping this rig with bait. This could be due to the fishermen I talk to, but they have seen a noticeable difference in both the quantity and quality of fluke caught with this rig, sans bait.

You can always use various bait strips, along with Peruvian Spearing, fresh squid and or fresh baby bunker. Those who fish day in and out and take customers for fluke stick with this rig instead of using bait. That has to tell you something on how productive in catching big fluke this rig is.

I will add, do not be surprised to see a number of big sea bass being caught with this rig, due to the areas where this rig tends to be used. If you get into area with a good amount of short and pin size sea bass, it can be frustrating in the amount of GULP curly tails that will get chewed up or ripped off your hook, so pick up and carry a few packages of each color you prefer to use.

The results of this rig speak for itself!

Image


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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby Jfish » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:47 am

Add a 4" Gulp Swimming Mullet (pearl/white) to that Bucktail as well. Now you have a killer rig :D . Never thought that i would use Gulp over the real thing. But the stuff works.
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby eric » Mon Jul 18, 2011 2:17 pm

hi all correct me if im wrong but i thought that knot was a alberto knot, the albright only wound one series??
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby Hawkboat » Mon Jul 18, 2011 2:25 pm

How are these in comparison to using fluke balls with a trailer leader and hook.

I used to crush some fluke using that rig also and instead of a Gulp on the teaser I used a B-@2 squid..some thing using different colors trial and error mostly. But worked well on hard sandy bottoms.
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby Jfish » Mon Jul 18, 2011 2:39 pm

Looks like an Alberto knot to me.

Bill the Gulp is deadly, especially when used on a Bucktail. Every single one of my L.I.S. keepers this year were taken on the Gulp fished on either a 1/2 or on a 1 oz Bucktail.

Still like my whole Squid for my deepwater Ocean Fluke. But for inshore, i'll take the Gulp.
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby Hawkboat » Mon Jul 18, 2011 2:48 pm

Shows how it's been since I did any fluking.

I used that fluke balls from Fire Island to Montauk on the south side.

Never tried the Gulp donw here as most of our bottom fishing takes live bait.

Akthough Chick did pick up a (FLOUNDER) down here on a live pinfish which shocked the hell out of him.

Told him how fluke love snappers also and peanut bunker live.

Boy I miss fluke fishing :(
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby ELIASV » Mon Jul 18, 2011 3:07 pm

I have exclusively fished Gulp for the last three years and have taken fish up to 9lbs in the NY Bight area. The results cannot be argued with as I am on at least 30 keeper sized fish for the season all on a 1oz spro bucktail in white and gulp of different kinds.

One thing that many MAY disagree on is the removal of the teaser hook. For the last two years I fished with a teaser but now I just use a bucktail. Although you will catch keepers on a teaser hook I find 90% of quality fish strike the bucktail. That is what I am interested in at the end of the day, I feel it cuts down on smaller fish in general as well.

I generally will use 4" Mullets on the bucktail or 3" white shrimps. The larger Gulps do work better but at close to 8 dollars a pack I will only put them on during a crunch time like the end of the tide when the big fish roam more. Small fish do tend to tear them off very easily. The 4" and 3" buckets come with a decent quantity so you get a good bang for your buck. When the tide slows I particularly like an 8" or 5" gulp squid with an assist hook on the 8", threaded on in a manner similar to a sluggo. Without a doubt I have taken several 5 + fish already this year with that little setup.

Although in areas where there are no where nearly as many shorts, a long gulp bait does make sense.

I also think a big thing a lot of people don't think about with a gulp setup you are in the water for a longer period of time. No need to check your bait as the fish will strike again. No need to pause and cut new bait after being robbed. If you need to change the gulp, pop a new one out of the bag and slide it on and you are set!
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby Jfish » Mon Jul 18, 2011 4:27 pm

Eliasv wrote: One thing that many MAY disagree on is the removal of the teaser hook. For the last two years I fished with a teaser but now I just use a bucktail. Although you will catch keepers on a teaser hook I find 90% of quality fish strike the bucktail. That is what I am interested in at the end of the day, I feel it cuts down on smaller fish in general as well.



Excellent point. As anyone who has Bucktailed with me before already knows, I never use a Teaser. Stopped using them a few years ago. Also agreed that at least 95% of the larger Fluke are taken on the Bucktail, the teaser just adds drag, and "i feel" changes the overall action of the Bucktail.


Bill, i have never, nor do i plan on ever using a Fluke Ball. Way too many better rigs out there ;) .
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby captjoekingcod » Mon Jul 18, 2011 4:48 pm

Great article Steve....
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Re: JULY 18- THE HOT HI-LO 'GULP' FLUKE BUCKTAIL RIG - 'CATS OUT OF THE BAG ON THIS ONE!'

Postby EC NEWELLMAN » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:55 pm

Thank you Captain Joe....and to some points here...

Eric, I have no idea if they want to call it an Albright or our own Alberto's Knot. The main point with ANY knot is to tie something that you know holds securely when under pressure. I tie a variation of this knot myself, and I know if I tie it improperly since it does not snug up properly. If so, I cut it off, and re-tie, period.

On GULP...I was a little behind the times on using this product. The information is from one of the top fluke captains I know, he spent a great deal of time testing the rig and he said that the GULP out fishes everything, even fresh bait. He even emphasized to save the codfish curly tails for codfish and fish the GULP curly tail for fluke.

Fluke balls....a number of fishermen who fish for fluke have shied away from the larger fluke balls since big fluke have a way of shaking loose when using the heavier balls, especially those fluke balls where the hook is connected by a swivel. Some fishermen will tie a short leadered hook off the fluke ball (connect to the swivel on the ball), and have had success rigging the fluke ball in this manner. Now I am not saying forget the fluke ball, but to realize that with the bigger fluke we are now seeing, the HI-LO GULP FLUKE BUCKTAIL is the most successful rig we have seen so far and it was designed for catching big fluke in rocky and rough bottom areas.

I have a number of my favorite tied by myself and Geoff Ocean Eagle that have done me well over the years.....but from what we are seeing over the past two years, If there is a more effective rig for catching big fluke, use it...but I would stick with this one on till something else that works better comes along!

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