Bottom Jigging for Ling Cod on Vancouver Island with the Hogy Sand Eel Jigs

Posted by Jamie Costa on

We spent 15 minutes on the phone with Capt. Kingsley Grant to discuss bottom jigging for Ling Cod with the Hogy Sand Eel Jig off the South East Corner of Vancouver Island. Here's what we learned... 
Capt. Kingsley Grant
Website: KingSize Adventures
Targeted Species: Ling Cod
Location: Victoria, British Columbia, Vancouver Island, Canada

Capt. Kingsley is located on the South East corner of Vancouver Island between Haro and Juan De Fuca straits in Victoria, British Columbia out of Oak Bay Marina. But the main area where this father-son duo both fish and take clients is found between Discovery Island and Trial Island.

Tides: This area where they target Ling Cod is tide dependent with big tides up to 12-feet. The best time to target these fish is on the last hour of the high/low tide or the first hour of the high/low tide but beware of the full moon tides which can cause the current to rip so hard, anglers end up snagging the bottom and losing jigs rather than catching their favorite dinner fish.

Capt. Kingsley Grant with his father Hunter Sr.

Approach: According to Capt. King, Ling Cod like really rocky pinnacles and although they can get up to 70lbs, they don’t see those monsters up in Victoria any more but you don’t have to travel too far up the island to get into them. The best fish to eat are the smaller ones that are 15lbs or less which can be found on the tops and sides of the pinnacles. The big ones can be found up on top of the pinnacles with the smaller often too small to keep on the sides or backs of the pinnacles

Rigging/Lure Selection: 

There are a few lures that work really well for targeting Ling Cod. Any heavier jig is going to work well in this scenario but especially the Hogy Sand Eel Jigs and the Hogy Pro Tail Paddle style jigs, ranging between 6 and 12-inches. The Sand Dab Softbait works really well too but the soft plastic needs to be replaced after every single fish. Because of their many large and sharp teeth, the sand dab is often ripped to shreds or pushed up into the jig head, making the soft bait look unnatural and obscure.

“They might be ugly and stupid but they are picky,” said Capt. King, “they like a natural presentation.


Why This Bait? Some people in the area refer to the popular bait fish as “needle fish”, but they are sand lances which look exactly like the Hogy Sand Eel Jigs, making the lure great for Ling Cod and the local Chinook salmon as well.

Colors: Black/Silver, Olive/Black and Green/Black

Retrieve: According to Capt. King, the best way to catch these fish is to drop the lure straight to the bottom, reeling up one or two cranks and then begin to jig by bringing the rod tip up about 3 to 5-feet. Drop it back quickly, creating slack in the line, and allow the jig to "flutter" down so it looks like an injured bait fish. 

“Ling cod are famous for chasing,” said Capt. King. “They know they are big, toothy and ugly so most things don’t sit in front of them.”

Similar to tuna fishing on the east coast, jigging the lure a couple of times while implementing short cranks then jig then crank a few times again is the best way to attract a strike from a Ling Cod because the lure looks like it’s moving away from them.


Rod: 7’ Ugly Stik Tiger Boat Roads

Reel: Daiwa SALTIST4000 Spinning Reel  

Line: 50lb PowerPro Braid

Leader: 50-80lb 4-foot monofilament, Big Game tippet. You can afford to use a heavier leader because Ling Cod are less line shy and heavier line is always recommended because they have such big, sharp teeth.

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