Offshore Fishing – How To Select A Spreader Bar

Offshore Fishing – How To Select A Spreader Bar

saltwater edge offshore fishing
August is the time of year many northeast anglers thoughts turn to offshore fishing, bluefin tuna and the other bluewater species. We created this “How To” in order to assist those interested in giving offshore fishing a try by providing some ideas on selecting effective spreader bars for fishing “south of Block”. This year in particular has been full of warmwater surprises as the weather pattern has brought cobia into Narragansett Bay, false albacore off New Hampshire and at least one sailfish into the Cape Cod Canal! While there are many seasoned veterans obsessed with bluewater and with very adamant opinions we also talk to a lot of anglers who are interested in getting a taste of the offshore experience Rhody has to offer. With the variety of colors, trolling speeds, rigging methods and other variables figuring out where to start can be a daunting task.
saltwater edge offshore fishing

Spreader Bars for Warmwater Trips

For your warm water trips to the Dump and Canyons do not leave the dock with out machine bars of all sizes, and stick to your usual canyon bright colors- greens, green zucchinis and rainbows. As 70+ degree water pushes past the Canyons see this as an opportunity to save on fuel by getting the same fish from a 60 mile trip as opposed to a 100 miler. In the blue water focus on temperature breaks and warm pockets. Most anglers troll between 6-7 knots and adjust from there.
saltwater edge offshore fishing
These areas have been loaded with fish as of late, including big eye, yellowfin tuna, longfin tuna, mahi, marlin and wahoo. If these species are on your bucket list now is a great time to go.

Spreader bars for Bluefin Hunters

For the Bluefin hunters sticking to 11” and 13” bars is safe. As far as color choices, it has been as varied as the BFTs location this summer..  Dark shades of green, purple and black are the usual “go to” for fishing offshore of Block. Be sure and have a bright bar onboard as well when the bite is not there and you need to change things up.
Check out the selection from Carlson Offshore here.
Your bar spread should be starting around the 3rd wave behind boat and plenty of space between them. As always it is advised to switch up speeds to find the sweet spot for that particular day. Bluefin trolling speeds are typically a bit slower than those used for yellowfin with 4.5-6 knots being most common. Additional lines can be run way way back as well as flatlined in the wash with birds, daisy chains, ballyhoo, cedar plugs or deep divers.
joe spread
Don’t forget your inshore casting gear as topwater mahi and small bluefin could pop up at any moment. We will cover that in another blog post shortly
Tight lines!
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