Basically mooching is the method for shallow water trolling since you are using lead weights in the 2-6 oz range and no sinker release. Deep water trolling requires a 2 1/2-3 lb. lead ball and a sinker release. Your rod/reel combo will need to be lighter for mooching and a heavier/stiffer pole for deep trolling.
There seems to be no difference when the salmon grabs your gear. You'll notice the tugging immediatly. Just hang on and keep equal tension with those barbless hooks. Hopefully you can get the fish before a seal grabs it. Nothing better than a couple of "fish on"s at the same time. Keeps everybody awake.
How are the "fleas" in the salmon gills lately? Alot showing up this year?
Banana rig (used in Monterey) - tie a 2, 4, 6, or 8 oz banana sinker, depending upon current and drift, to main line. Tie to other end of sinker a 3 to 6 foot mooching leader. The mooching leader can have either one or two barbless circle hooks. If 2 hooks, they must be hard tied within 5 inches.
Slydo rig - slide a large slydo onto the main line. Tie a large swivel onto the main line. Tie mooching leader (same as above) onto the other end of the swivel. Clip a ball weight (2, 4, 6, 8, etc ozs onto the snap on the slydo.
2. Mooching is always done by the party boat fleet in Monterey bay. The 6 packs there, and the fleet elsewhere mooches when the fish are tightly schooled around "hard" bait - anchovies and sardines. You attempt to fish in relationship to where the salmon are and the bait ball they are holding on.
The primary mooching bait are anchovies (frozen or thawing). The anchovy may be threaded as described in the previous post, or may be hooked through the nose and dangled ala a minnow, or may be hooked across the forehead with a half hitch around the tail. For a two hook rig, put the top hook through the forehead, and the trailing hook through the tail. With both of the later presentations, attempt to put a slight bend in the anchovy. This will cause the anchovy to roll in the water, giving it a bit more movement, especially if you work the bait. Sometimes people will use a cut plug anchovy. I've had success with both the single and double hook rigs. The second hook helps with short strikers. I also have more luck without the hooks deeply embedded or hidden by the bait. I get more hookups and less marked baits when the hook is more exposed.
3. Haven't heard of this being done in fresh water but guess it could be.
4. When you mooch, drop your line slowly down to below where the fish are holding, then very slowly reel up a few feet of line every few seconds. Work your bait to above the depth where the fish are holding, and repeat. Worked baits generally (but not always) outfish the non-moving baits. You drop slowly because many hits will be on the drop. If your line goes slack on the drop, begin reeling immediately, as you are being bit!
Once you are down to the depth of the fish, and working the bait, the bite will generally be a tap, another tap, and a slow takedown. Resist the urge to set the hook! You will pull out the circle hooks without hooking up if you do this. When the rod begins to dip, slowly reel until the rod loads up. The circle hooks should turn and embed themselves in the corner of the fishes mouth. At this time continue reeling, never letting up until you land the fish. There is some disagreement on the boards how to play a salmon. The generally accepted way of playing a mooched salmon is to have the rod tip high and continue reeling , and never pump the fish. Any slack in the line, even for a split second can allow the fish to spit the barbless circle hooks.
If you get bit but don't get either the 2nd hit or takedown, let out a few feet of line. This often encourages the salmon to come back and finish its meal.
5. Mooching is usually done either on the drift, or under just enough power to hold the bait ball.
I've been mooching with my in laws. I've never trolled. One of them is a professional bass fisherman who held the state ocean caught salmon record for 10 days immediately after they made it a separate classification. (You had to catch a 35 lber to qualify to be the first record holder. His was 51 lbs.) Somebody else caught one a little bigger. The guy who caught the record fish is a great sportsman and a great person, but we are bad luck for each other. I've fished with him five times and we both got skunked every time.
Anyway, they used a single hook rig that can be purchased ready made. They threaded it through a frozen anchovy with a threader. (I just bought one at Longs for $1.79.) A threader is like a knitting needle with a small hook on one end. The sharp end is inserted into the gill of the anchovy. The rig has a hard tied loop on one end and the barbless circle hook on the other. The hard tied loop is snagged by the hook and is pulled all the way through the body of the anchovy until the loop is out the back end of the anchovy. Once the loop is out the back end of the anchovy keep pulling the line until the hook is around the nose of the anchovy. Make the hook as inconspicuous as you can. Drop the line over the side to whatever depth seems best according to the fishfinder and whatever others are getting results at and wait for good luck. When you get a fish reel it back in. Keep the rod tip high and the line tight. The only thing keeping the fish on your line is the tension on the line. Any slack gives the fish an opportunity to slip the barbless hook.
There are also two hook mooching rigs. I have never used those because they look too much like they have a hook in them. I just can't see a fish biting them.