The Pacific Ocean waters host many different species of Rockfish and they sure are fun to catch! One of my favorite summer pastimes is to go out fishing for Rockfish. When you drop down into a school of hungry Rockfish, you are in for a fun time. On top of the fun of catching, they are amazing table fare! There is no wrong way to prepare Rockfish fillets, pan fry in butter, deep fry, bake, or make some delicious fish tacos! This post shares my favorite lures for catching Rockfish, both in deep water and the inshore. Hopefully it helps you find success out there!
Best Metal Jigs for Catching Rockfish
One of my favorite ways to catch Rockfish in the Pacific Inshore is with metal jigs. These lures sink down into the Rockfish zone quickly and are very effective. Typically, I will drop them straight to the bottom and lift and drop the rod tip to give them an enticing action.
Not all Rockfish species are found right on the bottom. So, if you mark schools on your sonar in mid-water try and target that zone.
Puget Pounder Jigs
Puget Pounder Jigs are versatile and effective, and they catch pretty much everything in the sea. I always carry an assortment of Puget Pounder Jigs when I head out bottom fishing. Every color they offer looks good!
Fisherman’s Gold Flutter Jig
This Seattle area tackle company really scored when they created the flutter jig, I have been amazed at the effectiveness for Rockfish, as well as other reef fish such as Lingcod, Cabezon and even the occasional Halibut! While they will produce other colors, their Glitter Root Beer color is the one that has out-produced all the other metal jigs that I have in my tackle box! Fisherman’s Gold Flutter Jigs are available in 2 – 9 ounce.
P-Line Lazer Minnow
P-Line Lazer Minnows are one of my all-time favorite lures for Rockfish. They are reasonably priced, so when you snag one on the rocks it doesn’t hurt the wallet that much. Their mylar-foil finish offers attraction that can entice even the most finicky Rockfish. They are 1 – 6 ounce and P-Line did a great job with color offerings!
Copper Pipe Jig
A classic lure for Rockfish, Lingcod and Halibut. When you are fishing the bottom in water deeper than 200′, a copper pipe jig will give you a great chance at a prized catch. This lead filled copper pipe creates an amazing amount of electrolysis that bottom fish cannot resist. Off the Washington Coast, we bring a selection of 16 ounce for those 100-150′ areas, and 24-32 ounce for deeper waters.
Best Soft Plastic Lures for Rockfish
Soft Plastic lures are a staple for your Rockfish tackle box. They are inexpensive and when you fish them on a lead jighead or a chicken rig, they can put limits in the boat.
P-Line Twin Tail Soft Plastic
These soft plastic lures have some crazy action in the water, and are now one of my go-to rigs when I’m hitting the Rockfish reef. P-Line Twin Tail Soft Plastics come in 4.5″, 7.5″ and 9.5″ in a variety of great color patterns. I like to rig them on a lead bullet jig head and give them a swift jigging action to really get the unique tail some crazy flutter.
Curly Tail Grub
Swimbait Fishing for Rockfish
There are a variety of swim bait companies that sell effective lures. Our favorites are Pitbull Tackle 4″ and 5″ Swimbaits. Pick a lead jighead that is heavy enough to get you down to the bottom and work them! Also a favorite of hungry Lingcod.
One of those great all around catching lures. Rockfish love B2 Squid. Like other soft plastics, I prefer to fish them on a lead bullet jig head, but you can rig them however you please and they will catch!
Shrimp Flies & Chicken Rigs for Rockfish Fishing
Shrimp Flies have been used by bottomfish charter companies for… like… forever. Rig them on a chicken rig and catch two Rockfish at a time! Aside from the classic shrimp fly, there are a nunber of soft plastic versions that also work really well.