Preferred Rig and Bait for bottom fishing the reef?

Would love to hear your preferences, suggestions and tips for bottom fishing the reef.



  • XafXaf Posts: 1,040 Officer
    My "go to" rig is the fish finder; barrel weight on main line - swivel-approximately 6' leader - hook. Line weight, weight, leader and hook size all depend on where I'm fishing, conditions (mainly current) and what I'm fishing for (grouper vs snapper, etc.)

    The other rig I like to use is a knocker rig; small weight (1/8 - 1/2 oz) on main line or fluorocarbon spliced to main line straight to the hook. Just letting the line drift back in the current.
  • UglycusUglycus Posts: 219 Deckhand
    A fish finder or chicken rig with what ever bait is in the chum slick. We fish three setups. One to drift back with the chum tipped with something on a 1/32oz jig, One with enough weight to get down under and behind the slick with either a live or cut bait and then a heavy setup with enough weight to get to the bottom with a circle hook and live bait. Seems to work for us.
    Formally know as "Fish'n Skiff"
  • piner_wahoopiner_wahoo Posts: 3,563 Captain
    live pilch or live hoo on bottom
    CUSTOM CHARTERS u pick the boat- Capt.Harlan Trammell
    American Allegiance Charters -LOWER KEYS BACKCOUNTRY FISHING,LOBSTER dives, fish the 33' WORLDCAT w/ AOK+Allegiance!
    your boat or mine, my spots+my gear, your fish.
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  • fixedratefixedrate Posts: 165 Deckhand
    thanks for the replies... looks like I am generally doing the right things... I use pinfish a good bit and they always seem to me snagged in the reef...
  • keylargo359keylargo359 Posts: 1,249 Officer
    How you set up on the reef. and how your chum slick is positioned in relation to the reef your fishing. and all the reefs in the general area. can make a big difference in your success on the patches. I also prefer the incoming tide to the out going. Your baits should never reach the reef they should be back off the reef at least fifty feet or more chumming should bring the fish to you. a large mutton or grouper will smoke you in a hart beat if your bait is right up on the reef.
    The worst day of fishing is still better than the best day of work:\
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