Help catching hard tails this time of year - Pensacola Fishing Forum

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Old 05-10-2018, 09:41 AM   #1
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Default Help catching hard tails this time of year

Can some super nice folks give me some pointer on where and exactly how to catch hardtails this time of year. I tried trolling little tube baits along the beach and got nothing. Thanks for any help.
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Old 05-10-2018, 10:52 AM   #2
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Default Most of the time folks want to know how to keep from catching Hardtails.

OK, this is based on how I did it in P'cola 50 years or so ago. Trolling a small white or yellow jig 2' in front of a size OO Clark spoon was a sure thing. Back then, there was little traffic in the passes. I'd troll around the buoys for Spanish but usually caught more Hardtails.

To keep the rig from tangling, use a 3-way swivel with 1' of 60# mono to the jig and 3' of mono to the spoon. Size the jig to fit trolling speed. Cut the jig skirt right at the back of the hook bend. We didn't have soft plastics back then and used hair or crimped saran tailed jigs.

Use single hooked lures if you plan to use these fish as bait. If you catch a 2# Ladyfish, Bluefish or Mackerel, rig it on a stinger rig and you should catch a big Kingfish or Cuda. Runners don't troll very well unless you slow troll them live.
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Old 05-10-2018, 10:57 AM   #3
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Yesterday morning there were millions of them all over the Destin Pass and we were getting three per drop on Danilo rigs as were thirty other boats.
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Old 05-10-2018, 12:10 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GROUPER GHETTO View Post
Can some super nice folks give me some pointer on where and exactly how to catch hardtails this time of year. I tried trolling little tube baits along the beach and got nothing. Thanks for any help.
Like a mackeral tree? Scale down and use a sabiki or a gotcha plug.
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Old 05-10-2018, 09:11 PM   #5
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These little AJ wannabes like structure just like their larger cousins. Buoys, rock piles, etc. Larger sabikis (#4,#2) work but two small jigs or a jig and a streamer tied one behind another work really well, produce a lot of doubles and don't tangle nearly as bad. I fished a little rock pile yesterday that was covered up with them, wish I could've sent you some!

Last edited by Catchemall; 05-10-2018 at 09:13 PM.
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Old 05-11-2018, 08:51 AM   #6
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BillMe, can you direct us to what a danilo rig is?
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Old 05-11-2018, 09:25 AM   #7
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Glad to hear somebody else is having trouble. Pensacola is the first place I've ever been where I had trouble catching them. Panama City and Destin I could fill the baitwell in 10 mins. For some reason around here I just can't seem to find/catch them.
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Old 05-11-2018, 07:15 PM   #8
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Thanks for everyone’s help, we caught our hardtails and headed south for 2 keeper AJ’s in 10 minutes times.
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Old 05-11-2018, 07:16 PM   #9
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White double speck jig did the trick for who wants to know.
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Old 05-12-2018, 10:19 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Me View Post
Yesterday morning there were millions of them all over the Destin Pass and we were getting three per drop on Danilo rigs as were thirty other boats.
Never heard of those before
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