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#7000512 - 12/18/17 06:53 AM Open water hunting
FeetDown Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 08/10/12
Posts: 140
Loc: North Texas
I recently went sea duck hunting in the Chesapeake Bay, and it got me wondering how many guys use a similar hunting approach in Texas lakes and larger rivers. Rather than setting up along a shoreline, you're right out there in the middle of the water targeting divers.

Curious, do you need a layout boat in order to have enough concealment, or can you get away with hunting right out of your v-hull high wall? Sea ducks didn't seem to care too much either way, though notably they fly very low to the water and I could see the waves breaking up your outline pretty effectively. Seems like this style of hunting would be a great way to get away from the crowds here in Texas.

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#7001443 - 12/18/17 04:20 PM Re: Open water hunting [Re: FeetDown]
Matpk Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 03/06/15
Posts: 1146
aim
Good idea. I think both technique should work.

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#7001648 - 12/18/17 07:11 PM Re: Open water hunting [Re: FeetDown]
GoBears870 Offline
Woodsman

Registered: 12/04/12
Posts: 100
Loc: Dallas, TX
I know at least one lodge on the TX coast that does layout boat hunting. I assume itís for divers. I canít see it being that effective with puddle ducks in the big lakes, but Iíve wondered the same thing you are wondering when Iíve seen rafts of divers out on the main lake.

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#7001933 - 12/18/17 10:58 PM Re: Open water hunting [Re: FeetDown]
Streater Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 09/15/04
Posts: 486
Loc: Lake X, Texas
I turn all my old deeks into divers. Have a few dozen on the shelf. Iíve been thinking about rigging a few long lines and learn that style of hunting. Looks like fun.

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#7001946 - 12/18/17 11:17 PM Re: Open water hunting [Re: FeetDown]
Sniper John Online   happy
gumshoe

Registered: 08/31/05
Posts: 16856
Loc: North Texas
I have an antique wooden boat set up for open water layout hunting. I usually mud the deck or throw bank drift on top of it. Sometimes a couple decoys on the deck too. It now has reversible oars so doubles as a sneak boat too. Over next summer I am changing the dark green stain to a texas brown lake water color and adding a 1970s made low profile flip top pirogue sneak boat blind for those rainy days. The upgrade project keeps getting put down the priority list because I don't use this boat very often but it is is nice to have when the conditions are right for it. I do not think a big deep v hull would work at all. Even divers have been hunted hard by the time they get this far, nor do we have the same kind of waves here. For open water with no cover, your have to be low profile and look like water, a big log, or an island. But one Teal season when mojo decoys where still new, I watched a ski boat pull up to the edge of a stump field on the edge of deep water out from the bank I was hunting. They put two mojo ducks out, one on a stump about 3 yards out each side of the boat and no other decoys. They killed a quick limit every morning I saw them out there, so anything is possible.







Edited by Sniper John (12/18/17 11:21 PM)

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#7001955 - 12/18/17 11:33 PM Re: Open water hunting [Re: Streater]
Sniper John Online   happy
gumshoe

Registered: 08/31/05
Posts: 16856
Loc: North Texas
Originally Posted By: Streater
I turn all my old deeks into divers. Have a few dozen on the shelf. Iíve been thinking about rigging a few long lines and learn that style of hunting. Looks like fun.


The divers in this picture on the brine lake are on a long line. They can be wonderful or they can be a curse trying to untangle on the water. Puddle ducks will not like seeing the line in clear water. Divers don't seem to notice. Shorter is better on Texas water IMO. For example two shorter lines instead of one long one. Less to tangle. I try to reload the longline in the bag or into the bottom of the boat, so that it for sure plays out onto the water without any tangles. If storing the long line or traveling a long distance with it, I just unclip all the decoys and roll it up. Easier to clip them back on just before needing them than it is to try to untangle an impossible mess.



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#7003271 - 12/19/17 06:10 PM Re: Open water hunting [Re: Sniper John]
Streater Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 09/15/04
Posts: 486
Loc: Lake X, Texas
Originally Posted By: Sniper John
Originally Posted By: Streater
I turn all my old deeks into divers. Have a few dozen on the shelf. Iíve been thinking about rigging a few long lines and learn that style of hunting. Looks like fun.


The divers in this picture on the brine lake are on a long line. They can be wonderful or they can be a curse trying to untangle on the water. Puddle ducks will not like seeing the line in clear water. Divers don't seem to notice. Shorter is better on Texas water IMO. For example two shorter lines instead of one long one. Less to tangle. I try to reload the longline in the bag or into the bottom of the boat, so that it for sure plays out onto the water without any tangles. If storing the long line or traveling a long distance with it, I just unclip all the decoys and roll it up. Easier to clip them back on just before needing them than it is to try to untangle an impossible mess.





Yessir. That was my plan but Iíll use 36Ē leaders made out of the line I use for my Texas rigs to connect them to the main line with trot line clips. Other than a big swivel every 20í or so, nothing will be permanently attached to the main line so WHEN it gets tangled and WHEN I end up cutting it, ill only be out some tared line, a few bricks and a few swivels. Ten minute replacement. Iíll hunt from a Grumman Sport Boat configured as a layout boat or just hunt from main lake points and islands. Never hunted like this. Iím expecting a lot of trial and error. Your advice is appreciated.

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#7004563 - 12/20/17 02:47 PM Re: Open water hunting [Re: FeetDown]
Sniper John Online   happy
gumshoe

Registered: 08/31/05
Posts: 16856
Loc: North Texas
I have had good luck hunting the leeward side of windy extended points setting up on the edge of the eddy it creates. Birds will pocket right into the eddy along the edge of the rough water. Think like your trout fishing. Since your out there away from the bank it can also present some close but fast pass shooting for ducks avoiding the bank cutting around those long points with someplace to be. And double tap the mergansers and canvasbacks or you will lose some when they hit the water diving.
I use very short leaders with something similar to Tuna Clips. One longer and one very short line, plus few singles on texas rigs rigged for deeper water I only use it for the occasional diver hunt, so I don't worry too much about the line being visible. I think I got my gear from doctari longlines, but that was a long time ago.

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