Long range arsenal

Started by Alans Buddy, January 04, 2015, 05:44:37 AM

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Nope, but why would you want it to?
When I was your age Pluto was a planet!

Jon Vadney

Islandgypsy, that picture is a thing of beauty haha.

Also, part of what makes longrange so enjoyable to so many people is that you can make the trip what you want.  If you work a super high-stress job and you want to turn the phone off for a week and fish, drink and gamble with your buddies, you can do that!  If you want to sleep 3-6 hrs a day and break that up into 2 or 3 "sleeping shifts" so you can maximize your time at the rail, you can do that too.  It's all up to you what you want out of your vacation.

The one thing I think that should also be mentioned is that you could show up with nothing but your clothing, get all of your tackle from the boat, and do just fine.  In fact, there are plenty of fisherman who have their own gear but do it this way because they live far (other side of the country) from San Diego. The boats have really good rental gear.


Thats all so true. You can fish til you drop, or read a good book and catch up on your sleep. An how many times does someone on their first trip catch the lunker ? "I'd rather be lucky than good" is a popular expression on these trips. Though if I had one piece of advice it would always be " forget what you think you know and listen to the crew and skipper".  

And like Lee espouses , stay with the heavy stuff...when you are having  fun catching 100# school tuna on 60 and 80# that's when a couple or three 200-300 pound cows breeze through and mess up your whole day!  You never know what will eat your next bait.  GB


Most if not all has been covered in this thread as far as rods and reels go for long range trips but I'd like to add just a little.

When people that have never been on a long range trip think about maybe taking one and they think about gearing up many look to the boats recommendations on what gear to take. This is a good starting point but most boats list everything that (may) be needed on trips the length the angler is looking to go on. This gear list will range widely on any possible catches from years past to what may be working the time the person schedules their trip. This can be daunting to a newbie in terms of cost and how the heck can any one person get so much gear to a boat when traveling to SD by airplane.

I too have came to a minimalist approach when I go long and for me that has never been anything over 8 days on a boat. I did take my first long range trip when I was either 14 or 15 years old (a 6 day trip) and now I'm 50.

Wow has gear changed over that time and how it is used. No more is it a must to send your reels to Cal's Two Speed so he can do his magic giving you a fighting chance to land truly big fish from a LR boat (though his team does amazing work on reels if you want it), connecting your rod and reel to a backup rig and tossing it overboard while hoping and praying you get your setup back, strapping yourself onto a harness hoping you don't get pulled overboard or jumping onto a skiff in less than ideal weather chasing down the large tuna you hooked wondering if this is the smartest thing to do.

The biggest advances I have see over the years that are true game changers are the use of spectra/braided lines and more manufactures designing reels to handle big game, whatever game your chasing. Without these two the push for innovation to gain market share would be more limited IMO to the development of our sport.

Furthermore if your flying in to go on a long range boat your options are more open than ever before. No longer is it a must to ride on the best fleet in the world to catch world class fish. If you choose you can fly down to Baja, Puerto Vallarta, Costa Rica or were ever your hart desires. This puts you in range of these fish without the long boat rides.  

Ok off on a bit of a tangent, let me get back to gear. I'm a firm believer in less gear so I can afford more trips. I like to have backups for my most used rods and reels on any given trip. Also I take gear that can cover more bases, lets say 40 to 50 lb reels will be used most, matched to 6.5-7' rods, with 2 setups in this line class I can fish flylined bait, dropper loop, yoyo iron and use these for wahoo be it bombs/iron or metal leader bait. I will have these rigged up differently depending on what we may encounter on any given day and I can change these setups quickly if needed to. With these two setups and one 60-80 lb trolling outfit I have covered about 95% of the type of fishing I do.

Now when you get into longer trips over 10 days bigger gear is a must but you don't need to have backups as most of the boats and landing have loaner gear up to the task. Heck if you don't have, want to bring or buy any of these contact the landing or boat and let them know what you need and I'm sure the boats out of San Diego can cover your bases.  

Now what brings up cost and having more gear is the "specialty" setups, like using only one setup for yoyo fishing and another for dropper loop maybe another for wahoo bombs or iron and heck through in another for live bait. Having them all rigged and ready is very nice for the different types of fishing methods but it is not a must.


Spot on SoCal..anymore I/ we use the boats kite and trolling rigs and just bring anything we are partial to tie on. Pretty much all the LR fleet has state of the art loaner outfits for those in need. Tackle manufactureres often provide gear on LR boats as the ultimate " acid  test" as what works and holds up and what needs re- engineering.    GB

Robert Janssen

Quote from: MarkT
... and was a moderator with him on Allcoast (I was the tackle board and he was long range moderator) back when that meant something.

It still does, Mark.



BMitch, I agree with you completely.  The NE partyboat tuna trips rarely, rarely see a fish that couldn't be handled quite adequately with a 6/0 or even a 40 reel and 60 lb. mono.  Keeping tabs on boat reports, it's a rare day when the pool fish exceeds 100 lb.

Why, then, have my prior posts largely been about sending a 16 Int'l II to Cal? And a 30SW to the other gent who was doing the "Free Spooler" on Int'l reels? My wife would like to know.   ;D

....... becuz I watched a sword that weighed in at 275 take a Senator 9/0 down to the bottom of the spool.  And, having seen that, I want one.   :)


BrianBM, a sword at 275# is a chore on an 80W 2spd. Let alone a single speed 9/0. That being said I can't imagine all the gear I would bring on a 10-16 day trip. I get great satisfaction in fishing my own set ups and would most likely have waaaaay to much gear going.  These left coast guys have this wired and I have nothing but the utmost respect and admiration for the innovations they have brought to the table over the years. Some day I hope to have the chance to get on one of those trips too see first hand. If that ever happens I'm gonna have to rent the tackle. ;) ;D
luck is the residue of design.


The other gent was Larry Cofeen with his Cofe Free Spooler. I don't know if he's still around.
When I was your age Pluto was a planet!

David Hall

Looks like I'm gonna need a bigger boat!  :(