TackleDirect.com
Free Fishing Reports
Free Fishing Reports

Striped Bass on Live Eels

Short URL: http://bit.ly/19wxuMO - Views: 158612

Striped Bass FishingThere are two distinct methods for targeting striped bass on  live eels.  Anglers can choose either conventional tackle or spinning tackle.  Conventional tackle is somewhat heavier and easier to fish.  However, lighter spinning tackle can produce a much better presentation and will nearly always out-fish conventional tackle when there are big fish around.

Conventional Rod & Reel

When drifting live eels for striped bass in fast currents, or on fast drifts when sinkers are needed, we recommend a 6’6″ to 7′ conventional rod with a fast to extra-fast action..  We recommend loading the conventional reel with 30lb braid attached to a 5ft length of 30-50lb fluorocarbon leader using a 75lb barrel swivel. The rig is completed with a 5/0 or 6/0 offset style circle hook.  An egg sinker just large enough to allow the angler to keep the eel just off the bottom should be used.

Spinning Rod & Reel

For catching stripers on live eels when fishing in conditions where an eel can swim to the bottom unassisted (slow drifts, shallow water, or when stemming) we recommend a 7′ spinning rod and a spinning reel loaded with with 30lb fused line attached to a 5ft length of 30-50lb fluorocarbon leader using a 75lb barrel swivel.  The rig is completed with a  5/0 or 6/0 offset style circle hook.

Hooks for Live Eels

Whether using spinning or conventional tackle we strongly suggest using circle hooks.  Eels are a very easy bait to swallow and indiscriminately target fish of all sizes.  A typically day will see many undersized fish brought to the boat.  The best way to release these fish is by using a dehooker at boat-side (do not net them).  This will greatly reduce the stress on the fish and ensure the best chance of a quick recovery.

Braided and Fused Lines

We recommend using 30lb or heavier braided or fused lines.  The thin diameter of these lines will improve the presentation by allowing the eel to dive deep quickly and stay deep.  however, it is critical that the angler leaves the reel in free spool at all times to allow the striper to grab the eel and turn away before closing the bail or putting the reel in gear.  No hook set is required as the circle hook should set itself in the corner of the fishes mouth.  Using lines lighter than 30lb is a mistake.  Bigger fish may be impossible to stop and the duration of the fight will create additional stress on the fish.

Rigging a Live Eel

Whenever fishing with live eels it is important to have a big supply of dry towels.  Take an old  big towel and cut it into many small towels and put them in a dry place.  Once the towels get wet and covered with eel slime they need to be washed and dried before they can be used again.  Grab the eel just behind the head and put the hook through the lower lip and out through the upper lip.  Be careful not to set the hook too far back or you may kill the eel.

The Right Bottom

The best spots for targeted trophy striped bass with live eels are rocky bottoms, boulder fields, ledges, and drop offs.  Use your sonar unit to locate the best spots and hopefully to see some fish on those spots.  When fishing in strong current or wind assisted drift it is critical to start the drift well above the targeted bottom.  This gives the eel a chance a swim down to the right depth and be in the hit zone as you drift across your target.

Striped Bass Tackle Checklist – Live Eels

  • 6’6″ to 7′ conventional rod or 7′ spinning rod
  • Conventional or spinning reel capable of handling 30lb braid
  • 30-50lb fluorocarbon leader
  • 75lb (or equivalent) barrel swivel
  • 5/0 – 6/0 circle hooks

Contact us if you have questions about our recommendations


Tackle Recommendations
Click on any of the images or names to visit the manufacturer's website.  Click on the links or retailer logo to see prices or purchase.  If you can't find the product you want, try searching Amazon. Please contact us if you find any broken links!
Rods
Penn Legion Spinning Penn Legion Spinning
Inshore spinning rod - 6'6" to 8' - multiple models suitable for 6-40lb mono and 6-65lb braid - fast to extra-fast actions
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Penn Legion Spinning Penn Legion Spinning
Shimano Teramar Northeast Inshore Spinning Shimano Teramar Northeast Inshore Spinning
Inshore spinning rod - 6'6" to 8' - multiple models suitable for 10-30lb mono and 8-30lb braid - medium fast to extra-fast actions
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy direct at Amazon
Shimano Teramar Northeast Inshore Spinning Shimano Teramar Northeast Inshore Spinning
Reels
Penn Spinfisher V Penn Spinfisher V
Spinning reel - models rated for 4-50lb mono and 10-80lb braid - 4.2:1, 4.7:1, 5.6:1, and 6.2:1 gear ratios - 5 ball bearings
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Penn Spinfisher V Penn Spinfisher V
Penn Clash Penn Clash
Spinning reel - models rated for 4-30lb mono and 8-80lb braid - 4.7:1, 5.6:1, 6.2:1 gear ratios - Full Metal Body, CNC Gear Technology, Leveline Oscillation System, HT-100™ carbon fiber drag washers, 8 Sealed stainless steel ball bearing, Instant Anti-Reverse bearing, Heavy-duty aluminum bail wire, Braid ready spool and line capacity rings
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Penn Clash Penn Clash
Shimano Spheros SW Shimano Spheros SW
Spinning reel - models rated for 6-30lb mono and 20-100lb braid - 4,4:1, 4.6:1, 4.8:1, or 4.9:1 gear ratios - 4 ball bearings, Hagane body, Hagane gear, X-shield, cross carbon drag, and CF aluminum cold forge spool.
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Shimano Spheros SW Shimano Spheros SW
Shimano Stradic FK Shimano Stradic FK
Spinning reel - models rated for 2-20lb mono and 10-65lb braid - 4.8:1 and 6.2:1 gear ratios - 6 ball bearings - Hagane gear provides power with cold forged drive gear, precision cut gears for power and smoothness, Hagane body, Dyna balance, Fluid Drive II gearing system, and cold forged aluminum spool
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy direct at Amazon
Shimano Stradic FK Shimano Stradic FK
Line
Berkley Fireline Fused Berkley Fireline Fused
Fused line - more resistant to nicks and abuse than braided line - blaze orange, flame green, or smoke colors - available in 6 to 30lb test and 125, 300, 1500, and 3000yd spools
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Berkley Fireline Fused Berkley Fireline Fused
Hooks
Mustad Circle Hook Mustad Circle Hook
39951NP-BN - Opti-Angle Needle Point, chemically sharpened, Nor-Tempered, Z-Shaped offset secures plastic, fine wire, extra wide bend, black nickel
Learn more and buy on Amazon

Mustad Circle Hook
Terminal Tackle
Mustad Rolling Swivel Mustad Rolling Swivel
77900 - Black Rolling Swivel w/round eye - available sizes/rating: 4/144lb, 6/118lb, 8/104lb, 9/77lb, 10/70lb, 12/49lb, and 14/42lb


Yo-Zuri Fluorocarbon Leader Yo-Zuri Fluorocarbon Leader
Fluorocarbon leader  - invisible, durable, max knot/crimp strength - clear  and disappearing pink colors - 4-200lb test and 30/100yd spools
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Yo-Zuri Fluorocarbon Leader Yo-Zuri Fluorocarbon Leader
Yo-Zuri TopKnot Fluorocarbon Leader Yo-Zuri TopKnot Fluorocarbon Leader
Fluorocarbon leader - additional abrassion resistance, lower diameter, invisible, durable, max knot/crimp strength - clear and disappearing pink colors - 8-200lb test and 30/100yd spools
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Yo-Zuri TopKnot Fluorocarbon Leader Yo-Zuri TopKnot Fluorocarbon Leader
Berkley Prospec Leader Berkley Prospec Leader
Fluorocarbon leader - invisible, durable, max knot/crimp strength - clear, blue, pink, brown colors - 20-200lb test and 25/33/75/100yd coils
Learn more and buy at Tackle Direct
Learn more and buy on Amazon
Berkley Prospec Leader Berkley Prospec Leader
Other
Berkley Floating Dehooker Berkley Floating Dehooker
Soft grip buoyant handle - removes embedded hooks safely - lanyard included
Learn more and buy direct from Berkley
Learn more and buy direct from Amazon
Berkley Floating Dehooker Berkley Floating Dehooker