There are three basic techniques for salmon fishing in the ocean. Your captain will determine which particular method is appropriate based on many different factors. Trolling is the most common approach to ocean salmon fishing.
With the help of a downrigger, trolling involves setting your gear at a specific depth and slowly running the boat so your leader trails behind the boat with a flasher – mimicking the appearance of bait herring, which is a salmon’s preferred meal.
Mooching is done with a double hook leader in combination with a sliding sinker and cut plug herring. This technique works well when the fish are actively feeding particularly in schools. This technique requires a lot of activity as you will want to move your bait through the water continuously.
Lastly, there is “jigging.” Jigging is done by lowering a weighted lure to a target depth. You then raise the lure up and down in a range between 2-3 feet. The repeating action gives salmon the appearance of a lame herring. Who doesn’t love an easy meal!