When choosing a fishing line for targeting amberjack, a lot will depend on where you’ll be fishing and how big the fish will be. In general, the deeper you go, the bigger the amberjack, but there will always be a few big ones on any good structure as long as it’s about 60 feet deep. Although amberjacks are recorded as large as 170 pounds in weight, they’re commonly found in the 20-to-60 pound range. In addition to their large size, they are one of the strongest fighters pound-for-pound, and don’t stop fighting until they’re in the boat, making line in the size class of 60-to-80 pound test a common standard for amberjack fishing.
Fishing Lines for Amberjack Fishing
Between the common fishing line materials available – monofilament, braid, and fluorocarbon – each have their pros and cons when it comes to amberjack. Below, we describe each of these line materials and when and why to use them.
Monofilament Line for Amberjack Fishing
When waters get deep – especially beyond 200 feet or so – monofilament material as a main line becomes less effective because of the stretch in the line. Fortunately though, most amberjacks are caught between 100 and 200 feet of water, so a strong 60-to-80 pound test monofilament line will suffice in this range. Captain Rieumont advises that due to the surface area of monofilament line, strong currents will move line out of the fish's strike zone. He also advises to adjust your bait for the "C" current.
Braided Line for Amberjack Fishing
Braided line material is excellent for targeting amberjacks for many reasons. For one, braided line has a thinner diameter, and is thus more sensitive than monofilament for feeling bites from far distances.
This thin diameter also makes it the line of choice when fishing in areas with really strong currents, because it will cut right through the water and leave your bait where you intended it to be! When using braided line, a shock leader made of fluorocarbon material is recommended.
Using Fluorocarbon for Amberjack Fishing
Monofilament and braided lines are the most commonly used for amberjack, but fluorocarbon materials always make good leaders due to its abrasion-resistance and invisibility to fish. Although amberjacks are incredibly aggressive, they can also be very leader shy, especially if they are not frenzied up by chumming. Fluorocarbon material is the most invisible of all the line materials, and is also very resistant to abrasion in case the fish does take you for a ride into the structure. Use fluorocarbon as a leader especially when using monofilament as a main line, but when using it as a leader with braided line, add a segment of monofilament to absorb a little shock.
Final notes about Amberjack Lines and Leaders
In summary, since amberjack are most commonly caught between 100 and 200 feet of water, either monofilament or braided line will work for catching them. Monofilament line absorbs the shock of a hook-set pulled too hard, so it can be used as a shock leader on braided line, even if a fluorocarbon leader is also being used. Remember too that braided line cuts through water nicely, so always use it when fishing strong currents.