Do I really need 50# to fish iron for Yellowtail? Why?

Discussion in 'Fish Species and Techniques' started by Socal, Dec 4, 2006.

  1. Socal

    Socal Junior member


    I have tried it several times (so far catching only Bonita & Barracuda) and often read about Yo Yo fishing of "heavy iron" for Calif / Mexico yellowtail. I predominantly fish the waters off far north west Mexico (on boats from San Diego). But, I don't understabnd why everyone seems to want to use 40 or 50 pound line for 10 to 25 pound fish....seems to me that 20 or 30 pound would be fine.

    ((I'm not talking about giants on the 10+ day long range boats, but the bread & butter fish of northern Mexico coast and Coronado Island waters))

    I have repeatedly caught yellowtail on live bait using 20 pound line on a large baitrunner or on a small Avet?

    What am I missing about "needing 40 or 50# line???

    Is it the time pressure to get the fish in ahead of the sea lions?

    Is it the stretch of the mono that lets fish pull the lures to the rocks?

    Wouldn't 30 pound spectra topped with 25 feet of 20 or 25 pound fluoro be sufficient?

  2. ksong

    ksong SPONSOR

    If you have no problem to catch 10 - 25 lbs yellowtail on 20-30 lbs line in your area, there is no need to change.
    However yellowtail is generally regarded as a street fighter. Once hooked, they try everything to break lines. :) I have a great respect for yellowtail's fighting strength and the ability of utilizing structures for their advantages.
    I think the initial run of yellowtail is as strong as tuna for its size.
    I travelled to Midriff Islands and Loreto in Sea of Cortez, Baja mainly in search of big yellowtail. In Loreto, they use 80 lbs line for them and I understand why after I caught a few big yellowtail there. I had a same thought as you do before the trip and I did not understand why they recommended me 80 lbs line for just mere 30 - 40 lbs yellowtails. :)

    I normally use 15-25 line for 30-40 lbs king salmon as they traditionally use lighter lines for king salmon and you seldom lose king salmon except sea lions are around, as king salmon usually fight in open water.

  3. AJ hunter

    AJ hunter Guest

    What you are using is completely fine because you can let the fish run without worry of the fish tangling up in structure. Have you tried butterfly jigs with assist hooks? Also I use Yozuri fluorocarbon because it doesn't stretch like mono. At that weight of line Berkeley has a good line called Vanish. The refractive index of the line matches that of the water so you can hardly see it in the water. I've checked it out down to 80 ft on SCUBA and I am amazed how fluorocarbon is so invisible.
  4. jig

    jig Senior Member

    Not fishing for YT, but in the GOM on a partyboat, the main issue is the other anglers. I usually fish a minimum of 40# gear, because otherwise you don't have enough control over the fish, and it runs around other lines. I would assume you have the same issue on the west coast long range boats with lots of others on board.
  5. bunile

    bunile Senior Member

    50lb is crzy!!! If it's IRON ONLY set-up then go ahead, but that won't work too well with bait , that limits that rod set-up quite a bit.True that it's better not to lose the fish , but 40lb. is plenty, 20 lb can work (try not to roll your eyes)and the drag is going to be lighter (like 1/2 ? ). A gentleman uses 30 lb and fresh knots no-knicks at the end ( cut off chaffed section after each fish / tangle )YO-YO catching = Keep the hook set and keep giving full pressure and don't stop winding in line , ( no pausing or pumping in the very begining of the hook set ) NO CHANCE TO SPIT OUT THE HOOK !!!TIGHT LINES RIGHT OUT STRAIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU !!!!but don't rip the lips off their face you brutes !!!!