This was one of Tom's hairbrained ideas from when he was commercial salmon fishing in the early 2000s. The commercial technique for salmon trolling was refined in 2007 to accommodate fishing rods and off-the-shelf fishing gear which when combined makes MEGA-BITE the top salmon producing charter boat on Monterey Bay.
The commercial trolling gear consists of 500 feet of 900 pound test stainless steel cable connected to a shear plate and 35 or 60 pound lead ball with "double stops" every three fathoms (18 feet) on a hydraulic controlled gurdie (a supersized downrigger).
Upon arriving at the salmon grounds the deckhand will lower the ball over the side to just below the water surface then connects a Scotty quick release clip between the first set of "double stops" via an AK snap. The deckhand then pays out 18 feet of fishing line from your rod setup (flasher and lure/bait) and inserts the line into the scotty quick release. Then puts the rod into a rod holder. Then the deckhand lowers the rigging via hydraulic gurdies to the next set of stops (three fathoms/18 feet later) and repeats the scotty quick release procedure with a second rod. Then again for a third and fourth rod. Then lowers the entire rig to depths where the salmon are. If salmon are at 310 feet, we lower the rig 17 stops (306 feet). Then repeats the setup on the other side of the boat. By law charter boats can only run one rod per fishing license so six people get a rod and the crew get rods for a total of eight rods trolling.
We troll from 2 to 4 knots depending on the bite.
When we hookup a fish, the Scotty quick release automatically releases the "hot" fishing line from the gurdie cable and the angler is now connected directly to the fighting salmon. All the remaining rods continue to fish and on occasion one or two other rods will pop their release with fish on! We have had multiple triple and quad salmon hookups using this technique. It's controlled chaos and it's wild and it's fun.
To ensure we maximize our time on the water, the boat doesn't stop moving until we get back to the dock at the end of the day. Which means, you hook into a fish and we're still fishing with all the other rods while you fight and land your fish. Quite exciting. Quite effective.
This process has been attempted by others with limited success. MEGA-BITE is the pioneer in this fishing technique and has enjoyed tremendous success. Others may mimic our techniques but they can never duplicate or success. MEGA-BITE is the best charter boat in the world.