What is Deep Drop Fishing?

Deep drop fishing is an exhilarating way to catch big fish in deep ocean waters, using specialized gear like weighted lines and downriggers. This method targets species such as Queen Snapper and Tilefish and requires precise boat positioning and the right bait. Safety is so important! remember to wear life jackets and use float lines.

Dive into this rewarding fishing adventure and master the depths. Continue reading this article for more tips and tricks!

deep drop fishing

Where to deep drop fish?

Deep drop fishing is a type of fishing where anglers fish in depths of over 200 feet. This type of fishing requires specialized equipment and techniques and knowledge of the deep water environment.

Deep drop fishing can be an extremely rewarding experience. There are many ways to deep drop fish, but using a weighted line to lower the bait into the water column is the most common method. Once the bait reaches the desired depth, it can drift with the current. Still, it is important to understand the risks involved before attempting it.

The deep sea is a hostile environment, and anglers should always take precautions against getting swept away by waves or currents. In addition, anglers should be aware of the potential for snagging on undersea objects. But with proper preparation and safety precautions, deep drop fishing can be an exciting and productive way to fish in the open ocean.

How to position your boat for deep dropping

When deep drop fishing, it is important to position your boat so that the baited line can reach the desired depth. This can be done by anchoring the boat or using a drift sock.

Anchoring the boat is the best option if you are fishing in an area with little current. This will allow you to keep the boat in a fixed position and fish without worrying about getting swept away. However, anchoring can be difficult in areas with strong currents or waves. In these conditions, it is often better to use a drift sock.

Drift socks are an essential piece of equipment for deep drop fishing, and they can be very helpful in keeping the boat in place. A drift sock is a large bag filled with water and placed over the back of the boat. This bag acts as a drag on the boat, slowing it down and helping it to maintain a more consistent position.

deep drop

Fish to catch deep dropping

Many different deep drop species of fish can be caught during your trip. Some of the most common include:

  • Queen Snapper
  • Yellow edge Grouper
  • Tilefish
  • Scorpionfish
  • Swordfish

Each of these fish has its unique set of challenges, and it is important to understand the biology and habits of each species before attempting to catch them. See our blog on fish identification for more information.

No matter what fish you target, deep drop fishing can be an exciting and rewarding way to catch them. With the proper preparation and safety precautions, you can have a successful and enjoyable experience deep drop fishing in the open ocean. You may even come across one of the weirder creatures lurking beneath the surface.

Baits for deep drop fishing

One of the most important aspects of deep drop fishing is choosing the right bait. Many different types of bait can be used, each with its advantages and disadvantages. Some of the most popular baits for deep drop fishing include:

deep drop reels


Squid is a popular bait for deep drop fishing because it is durable and has a high success rate. However, squid can be difficult to keep on the hook and is often eaten by smaller fish.

Cut Bait

Cut bait is any bait cut into small pieces. This type of bait is easy to keep on the hook and is often successful in attracting larger fish. However, cut bait can be difficult to find in some areas.

Live Bait

Live bait is any bait that is still alive when it is placed on the hook. This type of bait is often very successful in attracting fish. Still, keeping alive in the deep sea environment can be difficult.

Learn how to hook a live bait in this blog.


Jigs are small, weighted lures designed to mimic the appearance and movement of baitfish. Jigs are often successful in attracting fish, but they can be difficult to keep on the hook.

Depending on the fish you are looking to catch, each bait type has its advantages and disadvantages.

deep dropping rigs

Equipment for deep dropping

In addition to bait, a wide range of specialized equipment is used for deep drop fishing. Some of the most essential pieces of equipment include:


Downriggers are devices that are used to lower baited lines to great depths. Downriggers use weights to counter the buoyancy of the line, which can be very helpful in getting the bait to the desired depth.

Deep drop reels

Deep drop reels are specially designed for deep sea fishing. These reels are often larger and heavier than traditional fishing reels and have a higher drag capacity. This allows them to handle the heavy weights often used in deep drop fishing.

Deep drop rods

Deep drop rods are specially designed for deep sea fishing. These rods are often longer and heavier than traditional fishing rods and have a higher sensitivity. This helps the angler feel the fish's bite in deep water.

Deep drop terminal tackle

Deep drop terminal tackle is any tackle used to fish at great depths. This includes hooks, weights, lines, and lures. Deep drop terminal tackle is often very specialized and can be challenging to find in some areas.

Deep drop fishing lights

Deep drop fishing lights are devices that attract fish to the bait. These lights are often placed above the bait, and they can be very helpful in attracting fish to the hook.

Deep drop fishing can be a very rewarding experience, but it requires specialized equipment. Make sure you have the proper equipment before heading out on your trip.

deep drop rigs

Safety precautions for deep drop fishing

Before going deep drop fishing, be sure to follow these safety measures to avoid any accidents. Some of the most important safety precautions include:

Wearing a life jacket

Wearing a life jacket is one of the most important safety precautions for deep drop fishing. Life jackets provide flotation and help to keep anglers safe in the event of a fall overboard.

Using a kill switch

A kill switch is a device used to shut off the engine in the event of a fall overboard. Kill switches are an essential safety precaution for all boaters, but they are especially important for deep drop fishermen.

Using a float line

A float line is a line that is attached to the boat and used to keep the angler safe in the event of a fall overboard. Float lines help to keep anglers from being pulled under the boat by the weight of the equipment.

Using a flare gun

A flare gun is a device that is used to signal for help in the event of an emergency. If you are stranded in the middle of the ocean, a flare gun can help to attract attention to your location.

Since deep drop fishing can be dangerous, it is crucial to take the necessary safety measures before going. Ensure you are familiar with the safety procedures before heading out on your trip.

Want to know more?

Here at Reel Coquina, we are passionate about deep drop fishing. If you want to learn more about this type of fishing, check out our blog or call us at 404-438-8732. We would be happy to answer any of your questions. See you on the water!

Be sure to check it out The Ultimate Guide to Offshore Fishing: Everything You Need to Know to learn more about deep sea fishing.

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