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Author Topic: Canyon Tuna Fishing | Chunking 101  (Read 9294 times)
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Hotrod
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« on: September 14, 2008, 08:06:10 PM »

By Ken Hager
(Brickken)



The Timing

OK, so you’ve heard people talking about chunking for tuna, or we were on the chunk and caught 6 yellow fins… but what exactly do they mean by this and how do you go about it? Chunking simply put is cutting up bait fish and throwing it overboard with the hopes of attracting tuna. There is nothing mysterious and it’s pretty simple once you learn some of the basics. Hopefully this article will give you a beginner’s understanding of some of the chunking techniques to make your nest trip more successful.

First thing you need to know, when is it worth my while to go out and invest the time in an overnight chunking trip? Is one time of the year better than another? The answer is a solid -it depends. Typically the best time for chunking for tuna is late August to mid October. Some won’t even start until Labor Day or thereabouts. If you can only get out once for the season then this is the timing I would suggest. This will give you the best odds for having a productive trip. I said earlier that it depends and the reason for that is each season is different than the prior ones. Sometimes the chunking will start to payoff in the first or second week of August and other seasons it will be later. You need to develop some “ears” out there as to what others are experiencing in order to make a decision.

Tuna at the DockText Box: Tuna at the dockour best resources are at the docks. If you live nearby any marinas start paying them a visit around early afternoon and ask questions. Watch the boats coming in and see if they are flying flags and what types of flags. If you see boats unloading fish don’t be afraid to ask questions. Most fishermen are happy to share their experiences when they have a good trip. Ask if the tuna were caught on the chunk or on the troll. Ask....
what baits they were hitting, what water temp? What was the action out there? Try to develop some contacts by being friendly and asking them questions about their experience. Give them a chance to brag and relive that trip while you are gathering information. If you know people you can start to gather information to help you decide when you should get out there.

Assuming you have no contacts at the docks and no possibilities to develop them then coming to forums like this one is a great idea. People who regularly get out there will typically post their results both good and bad. Read as much as you can to see if the fish are out there, check your local bait shops and especially those that cater to the off shore crowd. Don’t expect to hear anything in July for the most part, but get your feelers out starting in August and be ready to go when the reports start turning positive.

Next Article When to Run and Where to Set Up….
« Last Edit: September 14, 2008, 08:54:56 PM by Hotrod » Logged



Hotrod
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« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2008, 08:11:54 PM »

Great Job Ken.  This is great info for any up and coming offshoremen thumbs up

Can't wait for the rest thumbs up

If anyone has anything to add pertaining to the above info.  please feel free to thumbs up
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IrishAyes
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« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2008, 08:51:35 PM »

Nice article Ken, keep them coming.  thumbs up
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ped579
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« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2008, 11:39:39 PM »

Great start to what I hope will be a series of small articles.

Thanks for taking the time out to write... thumbsup2 greeting
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Bucktail
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2008, 05:49:28 PM »

Great article Ken! thumbs up  I hope to get out there for some tuna fishing one of these years! Grin
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« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2008, 07:53:51 PM »

Hey Bucktail, I'm looking for someone for Thursday. Your day off I believe, can you make it? Just going to the mud hole, not the canyons.  thumbsup2
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« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2008, 09:24:06 PM »

Great article!  Lots of stuff to learn.  Sounds like really fun fishing!!

 thumbsup2
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« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2008, 10:59:13 PM »

Hey Bucktail, I'm looking for someone for Thursday. Your day off I believe, can you make it? Just going to the mud hole, not the canyons.  thumbsup2

Joe,

I would love to go.  But I have to wait around for the cable man Thursday. Tongue
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« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2008, 07:16:26 PM »

I've  been tuna fishing since the 70's.
I fished for them on my own boat in the 80's when the YFT were in the butter fish hole.
in the 90's I booked trips on PB out of R.I.and CT.
Now I fish out of NJ strictly on the Voyager.
I have a vast knowledge of info, I would like to share with anybody who would like to know,I don't profess to now it all, but i have walked away with fish when no one else did.
Today it's a crap shoot out there,some trips your on , while other trips it's a bust.
 drop me a line,I'm only glad to help.
Tight Lines
Loneshark.
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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2008, 09:23:30 PM »

Thank You Lone shark. 

Feel free to add any Tips you feel like sharing thumbs up
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Loneshark
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« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2008, 07:50:00 PM »

First off your doing a fine job.

The best advice and you've already hit on it,
is don't be afraid to ask questions.
It's how I learned, and from the old salts I used to fish with you can learn a lot just by watching.

I will put together a list of what I use,how I use it and what I learned from fishing with some West Coast guys,to fishing for giant's with some of nuttiest people I've ever met.  

tight lines loneshark
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Hotrod
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« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2008, 08:16:39 PM »

First off your doing a fine job.

The best advice and you've already hit on it,
is don't be afraid to ask questions.
It's how I learned, and from the old salts I used to fish with you can learn a lot just by watching.

I will put together a list of what I use,how I use it and what I learned from fishing with some West Coast guys,to fishing for giant's with some of nuttiest people I've ever met.  

tight lines loneshark


Cool..  Thanks Loneshark thumbs up
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IrishAyes
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« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2008, 10:05:08 PM »

 thumbs up
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ped579
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« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2008, 11:25:23 PM »

Great article, thanks.  Can't wait to read more... thumbs up
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IN GOD WE TRUST

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« Reply #14 on: September 20, 2008, 01:36:45 PM »

Great stuff Capt. Ken  thumbs up  As a newcomer to this type of fishing myself, this kind of  "nuts and bolts" info is invaluable.. You really illustrate the right questions to ask and how to get it done..Your technique of trolling to the spot really strikes a chord with me.. This is something I've always believed in when fishing inshore and even in freshwater.. It never made sense to me to spend time slowly moving and searching over known fish haunts, without pulling some type of lure behind  the boat..  Now I'm glad the wind blew today, so I had the opportunity to sit and enjoy these articles.. Thanks!  Eagerly awaiting the next installment.
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Last Call
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« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2008, 02:03:56 PM »

Ken, great stuff.  thumbs up
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« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2008, 02:43:48 PM »

Ken,

Timing is perfect.  I have yet to venture out for tuna and have been seriously considering making the maiden trip.  The info you've posted is very helpful.  Considering making a run from the Highlands to the Mud hole then Oil Wreck doing the troll. Looking for life to jig and or chunk.  Will only consider with the right weather window and seas 2-3ft.  Not sure I want to challenge anything more on the 25' PH for now.  I've ball parked the mileage calculation to be 70 miles roundtrip then add another 30% factor for troll zig and zags.  Boat holds 142 gallons of fuel (should be within the 1/3 fuel rule).  Thanks again for timely info.

Pilot
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HK27
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« Reply #17 on: January 21, 2009, 04:00:33 PM »

i was striper fishing on the gambler in early december and they got a call on the radio from the fisherman saying a guy hooked into a tuna with his diamond jig and got spooled lol 
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« Reply #18 on: January 22, 2009, 06:01:34 PM »

i've had some success trolling out from 3 sisters (east of cholera bank)to the "NA" then thumbs up south towards the "HA" around the 19 fathom line in august....couple of bluefin, some skippies and falsies and of course mahi....then i work the pots along the mud on the ride home....not alot of weed line so u gotta work any structure there is....balloons floating and what not....two words....'live killies'....find a pot with a few mahi and toss a handful in along with a few on hooks and hold on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! thumbs up
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