Whether targeting yellowfin in the Outer Banks, blue marlin in the Gulf or South Florida sails, fishing a bait or lure from a kite is one of the deadliest techniques on the water. The kite creates a stealthy presentation because the leader remains suspended vertically, out of sight of wary game fish. Here are the essentials you need to add kite-fishing to your offshore toolbox.
(a) SFE’s Ultimate kite is one of the most versatile on the market and will fly well in winds ranging from 5 to 25 mph. (b) The Hooker Electric Penn 16 electric kite reel can retrieve at speeds up to 800 feet per minute at 40 pounds of drag, with full variable speed. (c) With features like auto-stop, auto-retrieve and an oversize line guide, the Daiwa Tanacom 1000 is a powerful reel for the Capt. Harry’s kite rod. (d) A helium balloon helps fly the kite on days with little to no wind; a release tool should also be kept handy. (e) Rigging needles and small rubber bands are used to carefully bridle live baits onto the hooks. (f) This selection of pre-tied 60-pound-test fluorocarbon leaders and light wire non-offset circle hook is perfect for sails, mahi or tuna. (g) A replacement kite line is ready to go with release clips already attached.
(a) The Penn Fathom 40 NLDHS is a workhorse live-bait reel and a perfect match for the Capt. Harry’s Caribbean Series stand-up rod. (b) Shimano’s Talica 20 BFC holds 640 yards of 20-pound-test line and has a high-speed retrieve of 60 inches per crank. Pair it with a 7-foot Destination Series sailfish rod. Note that both reels are spooled with high-visibility monofilament line. (c) A kite thong easily attaches the helium balloon to the spars on the back of the kite. (d) Plastic tri-beads prevent the weight from fraying the leader at the knot. (e) Two different styles of brightly colored floats allow anglers to keep track of multiple lines. (f) Small egg weights keep the baits hanging vertically on windy days, while split-shot weights are attached to the edges of the kites so they fly in opposite directions. (g) Metal rings for the main lines and high-quality ball-bearing snap swivels round out the rigging.