Fall is one of the best times to target wahoo in our region, especially along the 30 fathom lumps (though we note that recently, more have been caught farther out and at the canyons). This year they haven't been particularly thick - nor have many of the gamefish we usually pursue at the end of the season or for that matter, during the middle of it. But if we get a stretch of decent weather, you do still have a shot at putting a wahoo in the box to cap off your offshore season. And considering how few and far between tunas have been recently, targeting wahoo might not be such a bad move.
This is a trolling game, but to focus in on this species you need to give them some very specific offerings. If you want to target fall ‘hoo, be sure to:
- Get some lines deep. Use planers, downriggers, or “poor man’s downriggers” (a Z-wing with a release clip) to get a couple of lines well below the surface.
- Kick it up a notch. Wahoo like speed, and six knots is on the slow side for this species. Seven knots is better, and many wahoo sharpies take it up to eight.
- Use dark skirts. For some reason, wahoo are particularly attracted to ballyhoo run with black, red/black, and purple color combinations.
And we should mention, of course, that wire leader is a must when pursuing this species. These are some seriously toothy fish. Take care to stay away from those teeth when you get one aboard, or they'll put a hurtin' on you.