When the conversation among fishermen turns to downrigger releases, it seems there are as many opinions as there are fishermen…and, almost as many brands as there are opinions!
My approach to fishing has always been to keep things as simple as possible and when it comes to releases I firmly believe that simple is best! In fact, if you search my boat, you’ll find one style of release and we’ll get to which one in a moment but first, lets talk about why.
There is an old frontier saying that has always stuck in my head: “Beware the man with only one gun, for he surely knows how to use it!” So, it is with downrigger releases. If you have a variety on board your boat, how will you ever become familiar and therefore effective with them all?
Is there an inherent advantage to having several release brands and styles on your boat? In my opinion, there is not. Unless you’re comparing trout or kokanee tackle to saltwater salmon gear or using braid mainline instead of monofilament, I cannot imagine a single benefit from stocking your boat with anything but a single release style.
So, what release?
The Offshore Release in basic black for whole or cutplug bait presentations:
…and the Offshore Red for faster trolling of large flasher gear and plugs:
Whichever release you choose, to optimally function, the correct release for you must keep your rod fully bent in a full arc and dependably, predictably hold your gear at all depths and trolling speeds. If you’re experiencing “false releases” your release is costing you fishing time while you reset your gear.
Your time and effort on the water shouldn’t be wasted on a downrigger release that doesn’t work as hard as you fish!