drop shot rig

I am a noob to salmon or steelhead fishing and have tried several times with little to no luck and lots of frustration. The waters that I have fished although not recent have been rivers with deep ledges and water that isn't moving extremely fast where you can see the fish and they are suspended more than a foot off the bottom. In the past I have fished for mostly bass and some trout. Now what I have done in the past to catch a good amount of suspended fish which in my opinion are the most difficult especially in a lake is to use a drop shot rig. Now I was going to try this my next time out on the river for steelhead or salmon but someone told me that it is illegal because the weight is below the hook and tied directly to the main line and I by no means have the intention of snagging and don't want to get caught by using this method of catching fish hence why I am asking. My thought on this is constant tension on the line to indicate even the most minute strikes and keeping the bait lure in the strike zone productively. Can someone help me out with this I am assuming everyone here knows what a dropshot rig is and can clarify this for me. Any help would be much appreciated.
Last edited by a moderator:
I think you're asking about a 'plunking' rig


just add the desired amount of "dropper" to your weight, and you're good to go, often times 12-24 inches is what you're looking for. Match the weight to the speed of the water. If they're more in the middle of the water column, I would go with a bobber set up. One other thing I have seen used successfully for springers on the north umpqua in a situation you described was using BuzzBombs from rock cliffs and jigging them through the hole back to the base of the rock.
I have tried the plunking rig before with little success. Search drop shot rig and then you'll see what I am talking about. Thank you for the reply. The only disadvantage is that the weight is at a fixed depth on the rig i am talking about
drop shot rig doesn't look like it would work very well for salmon/steelhead, because you dont have any leader from your main line
Boy.... After looking at the drop rig my gut tells me that's gonna get you more trouble than results. True enough that design isn't for "snagging" but that set up w/ a few more hooks is used often by those who do. RWS has it right. You'll have better results working out that system than the other. Because S&Gs float you can specifically target suspended fish at any level. Using a sliding bead and bobber stop you can adjust how much line you let travel beyond the weight and dial in your hunting depth. (in theory.... currents will dictate if you can get away with a slider)
Last edited:
There is something bouncing around in my head in the fishing regs about this.:think: I think single hook with gaps of more than 5/8 inch and multi pointed hook must have the weight at least 18 inches above the hooks when salmon or steelhead fishing. I don't know if this effects your drop shot or not but it would be worth checking out.;) Check bottom of page 10, and top of page 11...2011 Oregon Sports Fishing Regulations.
Last edited:
Call your local ODFW for guidance.....Better to check with the people who write the laws. JMHO
They don't bite, well maybe Jeff Zeller ;)

(800) 720-ODFW

Regardless of the legalities.... show up next to another fisherman with that rig at a deadline hole... and you might end up in it-
Google "hover fishing"
:)Then adapt what is described from a boat to the bank...i.e longer dropper..almost back bounce from the bank. it works
Similar to drop shotting except your bait is 2-4' horizontally and vertically from your lead
Last edited:
From the book:
"Hook and Weight Regulations: (continued from previous page)
• Single-point hooks larger than 1-inch and multiple-point hooks larger than 9/16-inch gap are prohibited.
• All weight, if not part of a conventional lure, must be attached above the hooks. When using single-point hooks larger than 5/8‑inch
gap or multiple-point hooks, the attachment of the weight must be 18 inches or more above uppermost hook.
5. When angling for salmon or steelhead in the ocean, anglers must refer to Marine Zone Regulations for Salmon and Steelhead,
page 103, and the Northwest Zone Special Regulations for Tillamook Bay, page 32.
6. Barbless hooks are advised for fisheries where the release of fish is anticipated, unless specifically required."

This stuff is never that hard for me to find, fast!:rolleyes:
Way illegal for salmon and steel. Most don`t suspend so it doesn`t make sense anyway. Salmon will stack but bobber and eggs/shrimp is a better method for this situation.
Top Bottom