Balloon Fishing with a Twist?????

Discussion in 'Tackle and Rigging' started by Uncle Russ, May 7, 2008.

  1. Uncle Russ

    Uncle Russ Senior Member

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    Gentlemen: Consider this and please provide your feedback: The purpose of kite fishing, as I understand it, is to keep a live bait on the surface, far out from the boat, where its struggling will attract game fish. Now, although I have never fished with a kite, I have problems with it--first, it's more gear to fart around with and second, it almost seems to require two people, and third, it is a little hard on a head boat, where, until I can buy my own 52 footer, I am likely to practice my offshore fishing.

    I have known for years that people use balloons as bobbers and as sails to carry the bait out, and the bait typically hangs a foot or more under the balloon. Balloons are also used to keep the kite up in still airs. I even had an older buddy who had had groin surgery and after it was over, he couldn't...uh, so they took this balloon and uh...but that's another story. :eek:

    But consider using a balloon for fishing livies in a different way: You blow up a small red balloon just enough to keep a livie from diving down at will. you then put a hook either in below his dorsal fin or near his rectal opening. You then run a rigging needle through his lips and bridle him with floss or mono to the balloon up close and tight. Then you drift him out just like you would a free-lined bait or a chunk. He stays on the surface, where his panicked thrashing will attract the attack of game fish, and in fact it virtually looks as though his asshole blew out from coming up too fast. (now read that last paragraph again and consider that you sometimes think that you've had a bad day!) :eek:

    Points to ponder:

    1. Would the balloon puncture due to contact with the bait (assuming you didn't blow it up real tight) and assuming also that you had the hook far enough back that he would not be likely to contact the balloon with it.?

    2. Would the presence of the balloon so close to the bait be more likely to scare off game fish (read "tuna") or to attract them?

    3. Is this process legal in Federal waters? (I have searched the internet and do not find that it is except in some county jurisdictions in Florida--where they don't even know how to punch a hole in a ballot.) :)

    4. Even if legal, would it be considered politically incorrect since I understand that a couple of sea turtles once were found dead somewhere in the entire expanse of the Atlantic, Pacific, Indian, and Arctic Oceans? (Uncle Russ is a sensitive individual and would not want to offend anyone or run afoul of their disapproval.)

    I would, as always, appreciate your comments on my hairbrained schemes.

    Russ
     
  2. BretABaker

    BretABaker Guest

    as far as point 2......i just think its a lot of crap at the surface to make a tuna want to try and swallow a blue runner (or whatever) plus a birthday balloon.

    3. no clue
    4. yeah id feel like a jerk if it got off and floated away. but then again i see assbags throwing their dorito wrappers over all the time.
     

  3. DeepBlueGulf

    DeepBlueGulf Senior Member

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    The kite is flown on the Big E with great success! It is easier with to fly with two people, but one person can do it if he knows what he is doing. No big deal there.

    As for the other questions...

    1. No
    2. No and No
    3. Yes - not specifically outlawed
    4. Huh?

    DBG
     
  4. gman

    gman Senior Member

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    I fish a lot with balloons for shark and tuna, so from June-September I am basically blowing up those things. Kites and balloons are very different. Kites allow the baits to thrash and cause a commotion, balloons keep a bait close to the top and the bait normally tries to dive away until it is tired then it will thrash

    Balloons are great for keeping baits close however they are a pain because they constantly deflate at the worst times and sharks are attracted to balloons as they make a lot of noise while floating. If I had a dollar for every shark that ate the balloon instead of my bait I would be rich LOL

    IMHO nothing beats a kite for live bait presentation. Kite fishing honestly is an art. I spent a lot of time sailfishing off Miami the last several years and managing 6 baits on 2 kites is tedious as you need to constantly adjust the line however the results are amazing. fish explode on kite baits.

    If you really want to get creative buy a portable balloon inflator and inflate the balloons with helium and send them up with some floss. The giant bluefin tuna fleet off Massachusetts uses balloons to drift live bluefish for giant bluefin ... very effective for big fish.

    Definately effective in other parts of the world so I'm sure it would work down there

    **honestly the bad thing about balloon fishing is all the plastic that ends up in the ocean
     
  5. gman

    gman Senior Member

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    In order to not have the knot of the balloon stay on your line and end up being picked out of your reel or line don't tie an overhand knot directly on the mono ...

    1. Blow up balloon but don't tie the knot, just pinch it so air doesnt leak out
    2. Make a loop in the mono line
    3. Tie an overhand knot in the balloon around the loop in the line

    When the bait is attacked, the mono loop will pull right through the overhand knot leaving the balloon floating away and not ruining your gear
     
  6. ahistick

    ahistick Senior Member

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    If you really want to get creative buy a portable balloon inflator and inflate the balloons with helium and send them up with some floss. The giant bluefin tuna fleet off Massachusetts uses balloons to drift live bluefish for giant bluefin ... very effective for big fish.

    Definately effective in other parts of the world so I'm sure it would work down there



    A few of the San Diego Long range boats fishing down the Baja coast for a few years have been carrying helium tanks for balloons for the last few years.

    YouTube - Balloon Fishing Puerto Vallarta

    On a side note, on a kite rotation, I used frozen flying fish (wings frozen in the open position) and tuna were coming out of the water after the bait. Boats have also have used jumbo squid under the kite.

    **honestly the bad thing about balloon fishing is all the plastic that ends up in the ocean

    I agree :)
     
  7. Uncle Russ

    Uncle Russ Senior Member

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    Interesting and valuable responses and my thanks to all of you. Thanks for the info, deepblue and Bret.

    gman: I understand what you are recommending and it makes sense. Actually, I was not planning to tie the balloon to my line, but rather to bridle it into the bait's mouth--in other words, the balloon and the bait would float together on top of the water, and hopefully any predator would think the balloon was a part of the fish--no doubt it would pop on impact. That way, if I hooked up and brought the fish in, the plastic would not float away. The only bad outcome would be if the fish swallowed the bait--and the balloon--then broke off. But the balloon would not be any more likely to prove fatal than the swallowed hook IMO.

    ahistick: For this hypothetical method, I would not need helium since I would be using the balloon chiefly to keep the fish right on top of the water--not as a substitute for or addition to the kite.

    Would anyone know if the Big E provides a kite for general use and sharing or do you have to bring your own setup??

    Thanks,

    Russ
     
  8. gman

    gman Senior Member

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    IMHO Russ I think bridling the balloon to fish fishes mouth would tire it out extremely fast therefore killing the action and the fish therefore ruining your soak time. As you know live bait fish are extremely hard to handle, they die quickly when touched or altered even large skip-jacks must be bridled and set back out immediately or they wont swim properly

    Ideally you want a big natural bait that is in great shape so you spend more time fishing and less changing baits and you would need to let it swim naturally to attract game fish and I believe the balloon would stop that from happening under this theory

    Just my 2 cents
     
  9. Uncle Russ

    Uncle Russ Senior Member

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    Good point, gman. I had not thought about that aspect.
     
  10. gman

    gman Senior Member

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    I could be totally wrong just one mans opinion
     
  11. BretABaker

    BretABaker Guest

    i wish killies came in larger sizes. those suckers never die no matter what.

    glenn - when're you starting sharking this year?
     
  12. Deep_Sea_Gull

    Deep_Sea_Gull Lifetime Supporting Members

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    Uncle Russ,

    you are more likely to be able to keep a bait near the surface using a balloon if you will also use a clear casting bobber like one would use for fishing for macs off a pier. Slipped under were you tied on your balloon and above a swivel you should be able to keep a bait fairly close to the top.

    That said... Free lining a bait is your best bet. A simple swiveled, circle hook at the end of a windon. Stay in touch with a lively bait and wait.

    Keep it simple Russ!

    My .02 worth
     
  13. jig

    jig Senior Member

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    I thought the whole point for kite fishing was that it kept the line and leader out of the water. It's for steath mainly.

    I have used balloons before, but primarly: 1) to keep a bait at a certain depth and 2) to get a bait farther away from boat or pier if there is a light wind (it acts like a sail).

    If the main benefit to the kite is stealth, then the balloon would seem to defeat that purpose.
     
  14. Uncle Russ

    Uncle Russ Senior Member

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    jig: come to think of it, I have heard that (stealth) as well, but mostly I have read about the bait's struggles on the surface.

    Gull: I'm not sure I understand. Could you describe the rigging a little more clearly? Thanks.

    Russ
     
  15. gman

    gman Senior Member

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    i wish killies came in larger sizes. those suckers never die no matter what.

    glenn - when're you starting sharking this year?


    Mid June Baby ... there on there way up here soon, first reports of Makos off Maryland should start end of this month. A commercial dragger got a big thresher already last week of NJ
     
  16. gman

    gman Senior Member

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    I thought the whole point for kite fishing was that it kept the line and leader out of the water. It's for steath mainly.

    I have used balloons before, but primarly: 1) to keep a bait at a certain depth and 2) to get a bait farther away from boat or pier if there is a light wind (it acts like a sail).

    If the main benefit to the kite is stealth, then the balloon would seem to defeat that purpose.


    Kite is for two reasons ... bait presentation is the reason why you use it and heavy heavy leaders is a benefit because its not in water. Fish love surface action
     
  17. d-a

    d-a Senior Member

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    Gman

    how far up from the bait do you use the baloons? I have always used 10-20 feet and 4-6 lb mono to tie the ballon off


    UR

    I sent you a pm

    d-a
     
  18. Deep_Sea_Gull

    Deep_Sea_Gull Lifetime Supporting Members

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  19. Uncle Russ

    Uncle Russ Senior Member

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    Thanks, Gull. I actually knew what you meant by a swiveled hook. :) But I was curious how you placed the clear bobber.

    Russ
     
  20. BretABaker

    BretABaker Guest

    Mid June Baby ... there on there way up here soon, first reports of Makos off Maryland should start end of this month. A commercial dragger got a big thresher already last week of NJ

    ah nice, good deal!