Deep-Dropping 101

deep-drop-wreckfish.jpg
Species like this wreckfish spend their lives in extreme depths, as deep as 2,000 feet in some cases.Sam Root / www.saltyshores.com
deep-drop-rig.jpg

Deepwater Rig

Julylia’s go-to rig works for a wide variety of species. “I use a Kristal rig with four 13/0 circle hooks (1) and a battery-powered light (2),” he says. “This combination will work on fish from 10 to 100 pounds, and the light will work at any depth. You need a weight to get down to the bottom. I start with a stick lead weighing 2 or 3 pounds (3), depending on the current. The water on the east coast of Florida has a strong Gulf Stream current, and a heavier weight is needed — sometimes the current is so strong you can’t fish. The water around the Bahamas has less current and can be fished with 3 to 6 pounds of weight, even in 1,000 feet of water.” A 1-inch piece of outboard-motor gas hose above the swivel (4) absorbs shock.Joe Mahler / www.markerjockey.com
deep-drop-queen-snapper.jpg
Many deepwater dwellers make fine table fare, including the beautifully colored queen snapper.Sam Root / www.saltyshores.com
deep-drop-scrombrops.jpg
The Atlantic scombrops is another deepwater resident.Sam Root / www.saltyshores.com