I never in a million years thought I’d be putting up a “Humpy Page” because I never thought that folks couldn’t figure out how to catch these “unsung” fish.  It isn’t like its rocket science because out of all the salmon species the Humpy Salmon, Pink or what my friends and I like to call the Salmonoid has to be the most plentiful and stupidest fish out there next to the steelhead.  Actually a humpy is smarter than a steelhead but that’s a whole different argument since humpies won’t hit on a dry fly and steelhead will.

This page will contain my tips for catching the sought after Humpy Salmon.  Now one and all don’t be ashamed for seeking out your trophy Pink.  If you are a novice fisherman, pinks can get you all geared up for learning how to play bigger fish and building that “setting the hook reflex” that doesn’t come naturally to some.  You wouldn’t want to learn all the mistakes when playing a fish on an actual meat fish or steelhead would you?

Pinks are also great entertainment for children and wives.  When they start to show in the rivers the weather is conducive (sunshine) to incredible fishing as long as it isn’t too hot.  So dead beat dads what are you waiting for?  Get off your duffs, turn off that Mariner Game and take your wife and kids “Pink Fishing”!
Okay, this is a no brainer.  Find a school of pinks and do what you normally do out in the salt for salmon.  They are close to the surface so 20 to 60 feet should work.  Troll coho killers, cutplug herring, pink tinted flashers, anchovies and what ever else you have.  Buzz Bombs?  Hell yeah!  Use the smaller ones the fish don’t miss them as much.

Pink yarn and a corkie, with a lead weight.  Throw at the head of the school not in the middle of it.  Throwing in the middle of the school is called SNAGGING and is frowned upon by the Game Warden who is watching you.  No one else cares but his ticket book does.

Little pink flies on a floating line.  Note I said FLOATING.  I’ve seen guys out in the estuaries with sink tips and we won’t mention what happens but barnacles do bad things to sink tips.

The main tip for estuary fishing is to wait for the incoming tide, stand in the right place and cast to where the school is going.  The lead fish will pick it up so that you can have that perfect hook set of a life time.  Man, I hate that quote.  What do I mean when I say stand in the right place? 

When the school is trying to come into its creek they only travel in one way, if some dumbass is standing off the point where the fish are entering the fish won’t come in and you’ve ruin the fun for the guys standing on the proper side of the creek.  How do you know if you’re standing in the wrong place?  If they are yelling at you to move, I suggest you do or one of them buzz bombs may find their way into your skull and you deserved it.

You can get them on a bobber and sandshrimp, you can get them on a spoon or a spinner but you can SLAUGHTER them on pink jigs.  What about white, green or black jigs?  Sorry folks.  It’s all about pink pink pink.  The pinker the jig the more them fish are gonna slam it.  Jig fishing for pinks is also one of the greatest things to do when fishing because they do slam the jig so brutally.

Find a big deep salmon hole, cast as far as you can and let the jig sink to the bottom and jig jig reel, jig jig reel, and jig jig reel.  You can have fun for hours.

Fly fishing for pinks?  I do the same thing.  Sure you can get a pink on the classic swing but if them pinks aren’t in the deep holes but hanging out in happy currents they are in two feet of water and sitting right below you in a direct line to the river bank.  So when your small dumbbell eyed, pink marabou fly is swinging jig it or twitch it the whole time.  It’s the action that they love so much!
Please see my jig tying page,
"Getting Jiggy With It" on how to tie
Notice the color pink I use.  I bet the crystal flash doesn't make a difference but hey, ya never know!
This is a glow in the dark jig head.  I really like them in deep salmon holes.  You know because they glow in the dark.

Pinks have soft mouths almost as bad as the sockeye so you can rip the hook right out of their mouths and get it embedded in their hump.  If you are plugging for them, (talk about desperation) don’t set the hook too hard.

Store bought jigs are made with cheap hooks.  Take your pliers and turn the tip inward slightly. 

Remember stay pink.  Not baby pink but a deep fushia pink.

You might want to use gloves when handling pinks they are mighty slimey.

Can’t cast your jig very far?  Put a nice big split shot two to three inches above the jig on your main line.

If you catch a pink over 15 pounds it is a world record and you can get on the cover of Fishing & Hunting News.  I’m sure the record has been broken before but then not very many people want to be noted for catching the “World’s Largest Humpy”.  It’s kind of like being known for killing the “World’s Largest Rat” or “World’s Largest Slug”.

Oh, and if you hook a pink in one of these deep salmon holes on a jig and the fish doesn’t bare down deep.  Guess what?  That’s a coho and hold on.  Mid September will find cohos mixed in these holes and they love jigs as much as the pinks do but green and white seem to be their favorite colors!

Pinks only come in every two years.  So, if you wonder around aimlessly next year trying to find them.  You won’t.

So have fun and if you’re not going to eat them Humpies target the kill for hens.  I love the small Humpy Eggs for steelhead and so do steelhead!

Remember the number one rule when fishing!

Good beer and Humpy Salmon were put here on Earth by the Goddess to make everyone smile....