this picture shows and old women displaying her prized catch from the Redington long pier. A giant 53lb record Kingfish for the pier.This picture displays a giant Kingfish being gaffed and coming over the gunnel of the boat. The man gaffing the fish is an old salt and very heavy set and clearly a professional king fisherman. He stands tall with his chest puffed out knowing that he has won a kingfish tournament with this fish. The man standing behind him just caught the fish and is very handsome with a huge smile on his face looking at the old salt that gaffed his fish.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This picture shows a proud father with 2 sons and two 25lb kingfish. he is sitting on the front of a center console boat with his 2 sons at his sides.


Get ready to fire up your smoker and have your friends and family over for some world famous fish spread. We are going to cover two of the best ways to successfully target Kingfish.

1) Hardware

Trolling hard bait is probably the most common way that recreational fishermen target these fish. A #1 or #2 planer rigged with a Kingspoon  is the typical choice. Another great way to target these fish is with a lipped plug that dives on its one to specific depths such as the Halco lures, Rapala Mag 20 and 30's, and Nomad DTX Minnows. Planer's are used to bring the bait being trolled to the depth of choice.


A longer leader between 25 and 35ft will get you more bites and fill the boat faster.

Planers used for Kingfish start with a size one and go to size four. The number of the planer dictates a 10 foot increment, and so a number one would dive ten feet and a number two would dive twenty feet, etc. The leader of choice is 80lb monofilament leader.

Kingfish are caught every year with these baits. Nomad DTX Minnows, Rapala Magnum 20's and 30's and a glow 350 Kingspoon's. Rods and reels used to troll hardware are different than those used for live bait trolling. A 6'6" to a 7' rod with a heavy action rating paired with a Shimano TLD 25 reel with 40lb or 50lb line.

2) Live Bait

Slow trolling or anchoring up and chumming with live bait are very productive ways to get the job done. A 7' to 7'6" rod paired with a high speed conventional reel that can hold at least 400 yards of 25lb mono line is the standard. The terminal tackle to use is single strand hardwire or 7 strand cable with a 2/0 to 4/0 nose hook and number 6 to a number 1 treble for the stinger. If your not in the mood to tie your own kingfish rigs, no need to worry we hand tie them in house and are available for purchase here. 


Springs and higher relief wrecks are good places to start your search for your smoker.

As shown in the the diagram, wire size ranges from #3 to #7 in a solid wire and in 27lb to a 60lb cable. Bait choices will depend on where you are fishing. Inshore, you will want to use bigger baits because you will be fishing for bigger fish. This includes Mullet, Ladyfish, Menhaden, Spanish Mackerel, and Blue Runners. Offshore bait includes Scaled Sardines, Blue Runners, Spanish Mackerel, Spanish Sardines, and Cigar Minnows. If you have any further questions feel free to call our store and talk to one of our expert team members.

3) Rod and Reel Suggestions

For hardware trolling, we suggest our Dogfish Stik 15H. This is a 7' 40-80lb rod paired with a Shimano TLD 25 reel. For Live Bait fishing, we suggest our Dogfish Stik Kingfish Series Rod, it is a 7'6" model paired with a Shimano Torium 30 reel.