Strong currents sweep over the rocky reefs of Puget Sound everyday. Camouflaged and patient, the Lingcod lays in wait to ambush its prey.
These are a true bottom-fish that lack a swim bladder and will rest in the cracks and crevasses of rocky structure. When the opportunity arises, they use their oversized fins to lunge toward their next victim, swallowing them whole with their bucket-like and toothy mouths.
Everything from Herring, Squid, Octopus, Flounder, Rockfish or Salmon is on the menu.
Being a springtime fishery, it is truly our first big opportunity to get out on the calm seas of Puget Sound. The season runs from May 1 to June 15th, everyone can take home a Lingcod if they happen to catch one within the slot limit of 26″ to 36″, but there will be some shorts and a few goliaths lurking the reefs as well.
Searching for Lingcod areas in Puget Sound
When we are on the hunt for the perfect Lingcod habitat we look for rocky areas of the seabed. Fishing restrictions on depth keep us looking in waters less than 120 feet. Further North to the San Juan Islands and West to Sekiu and Neah Bay we find well defined rockpiles and substantial reefs. Deeper into the glacially carved-out Puget Sound, that rocky structure that houses Lingcod is more scarce and subtle. But it is there.
A Puget Sound diver will tell you that a small ledge or a single sofa-sized rock is all it takes to find a couple trophy Lingcod hanging around. Luckily we also have several artificial reefs that harbor a larger population and every spring we seem to make the most of what we have and catch some beautiful Lingcod.
Fishing for these amazing reef species is as easy as rigging a 5″ to 6″ Swimbait onto a lead jig head and drifting along a rocky area, or if you want to get really into it, rig up a live flounder on a double 6/0 to 8/0 Octopus Hook Setup with a sliding 3 oz to 6 oz ball sinker and get ready for the takedown of a lifetime!