How To Chum For Halibut

Today, Saturday May 17th, was the second inside waters halibut opener. Predictions of winds luckily did not come true. Wind stay calm, along with the seas. As mentioned on a previous post, we headed for a high spot near Protection Island and dropped anchor in 124 feet of water. Chuck Tamblyn, from Discover Bay Marine provided me with the ride today, and the perfect chum to send down on the downrigger. Since Chuck is a hard core, experienced shrimp guy, he had some of his shrimp bait to put in little plastic jars dotted with holes. He then put three jars in a chum back and clipped it to his electric downrigger and sent it to the bottom, then raised it six feet off bottom.

ImageThis picture shows the full chum bag and three plastic jars with plenty of holes throughout.


You can mix your chum using canned fish flavored cat foot, dry cat foot, herring or other fish parts and some herring, canola or mineral oil.

The chum lasts at least three hours and sends an attracting scent field down current. Be sure to keep the downrigger ball off bottom six to eight feet, to provide maximum scent field effect.

When we arrived at 6:45 the tide should have been moving from east to west, but it was slack, which forced us to use the trolling motor to reverse away from the anchor puller buoy. Not long after setting anchor and using the small trolling motor to get set on anchor, the current began to move, sending scent down current to the west. We caught two dogfish within minutes, a bad sign, or so we thought. Then, at 7:30 a.m. my rod bent over with a halibut pulling line. Yee ha! I quickly got the rod and began reeling the short distance to the surface.

ImageThis 27 pound halibut went for a 7.5 inch UV FAT Squid with a taste of squid. I had planned to use a double J hook leader with an upside down horse herring or sardine, but forgot to bring that leader.

After hitting bottom with the lead, I reeled up two feet. The halibut grabbed the bottom FAT Squid, but likely came it because of the chum and the glow FAT Squid two feet above the UV FAT Squid. Both squids had chemical lights making them bright and lifelike.

Please watch my How To Chum For Halibut video below, which also shows me catching this nice halibut.

Thanks and good luck to all of you halibut anglers!


About John L. Beath

John Beath is a writer, photographer, videographer, blogger, tackle manufacturer & Captain at Whaler's Cove Lodge in Southeast Alaska. He is also owner of and host at Lets Talk Outdoors @
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s