Blue Marlin - Fishing Tackle with Kevin Hibbard

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Instructor: Kevin Hibbard

Captain Kevin Hibbard, a seasoned marlin fishing captain, shares his expertise on chasing and catching big marlin. He has tested various rods, reels, and line, and provides insights on reels, backing, mainlines, drag, drag settings, usage, custom rods, and custom cuts. Hibbard's unique ability to articulate his approach makes him a smarter fisherman. By listening to his insights, you can become a more effective marlin fisherman.

Description / Review / Instructor


  • Blue marlin fishing is unpredictable in terms of fish size.
  • Certain destinations are known for larger marlins.
  • Having the proper fishing tackle is essential when fishing in these areas.
  • Big marlins are caught worldwide, both by commercial and recreational fishermen.
  • Captain Kevin Hibbard, an expert in marlin fishing, shares his wisdom on the best tackle.

Blue marlin fishing is a game of chance. You never know what size fish is going to eat your bait. Sure, in many places averages will dictate size and you can feel confident in using 50 or 80 pound reels paired with appropriate rods. But, and there is always a but. In some destinations, the destinations we all like to or wish to fish, marlin are a bit bigger. You never know whether the fish that piles on your presentation is a 150 pound rat or the 1200 pound mama. When fishing destinations where there is even a remote chance of tangling with giant marlin, your fishing tackle better be up to the challenge.

From Hawaii to Cabo to the Gulf of Mexico, North Carolina, Bermuda, the Azores, Madeira, Cape Verde, Ascension, Mozambique and on around the world, big marlin are swimming in the ocean and being caught on a regular basis. Many of these fish are caught by commercial fishermen, but they are out there. Us recreational guys never know when a freight train is going to appear in our spread and wreck havoc. You better darn well be ready by having out the proper marlin fishing tackle.

Marlin Fishing Tackle with Kevin Hibbard

Meet the Expert Captain Kevin Hibbard

Captain Kevin Hibbard, of Kona marlin fishing fame, has fished all over the world in hot pursuit of big blues and blacks. Kevin is stricken permanently with marlin fever. He is learned in the ways of dealing with big fish and is here to share some profound thoughts on smart considerations related to reels, rods, line, drag and chair fighting. If you even remotely expect to do the dance with big marlin, then your marlin fishing tackle should be well suited for the task.

With experience comes eventual wisdom. Having been directly involved in catching a lot of big marlin, Kevin has had the benefit of using a multitude of different products. With this type of experience you begin to distill down to the gear and practices that works the best. What reels, what line materials, how to get the most out of them, the answers become second nature. Using various bits of fishing tackle over and over brings a lot of clarity. Kevin has done this at the highest level. His knowledge is encyclopedic. There is a lifetime of experience to learn from a fisherman like Kevin.

Insights from a Kona Big Game Fishing Expert

What Kevin Hibbard is going to do in this marlin fishing tackle video is share some of his magic with you, so he can bring light to some of the areas you might have questions about. He will cover reels, backing, mainline, drag, the fighting chair and rods in great detail. Tag lines and how to set them up properly is another interesting topic of discussion. If you incorporate just a smidge of what Kevin is talking about, you will be a smarter fisherman.

There are some really good insights on the backing the reels are spooled with, how much and the preferred top shot. It is all pretty simple, very well thought out.

Kevin makes the point that your fishing rod is the most important part of your connection to the fish. He will discuss the mechanics of what you want from a big fish rod, how he cuts his blank and most importantly why he cuts them that way and how stiffness helps lift big fish. There is a lot to chew on here.

One area you should find of particular interest is Kevin's breakdown of the two-speed reel, drag, drag settings and manipulation during the fight. A deep fundamental understanding of the reels, based on years and years of usage, and how to get the most out of them is well articulated by Kevin. Being able to make proper and deliberate drag adjustments from first run to boat side is something that differentiates the top fishermen.

With what Kevin Hibbard shows you about marlin fishing tackle, you will be operating from a deeper well of knowledge. That is the difference maker. Nothing pays like the opportunity to learn from really smart fishermen.

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Why is having the right tackle important?

Having the proper fishing tackle is crucial, especially in destinations known for larger marlins. The right equipment ensures that the fisherman can handle the fish, irrespective of its size.

Who is Captain Kevin Hibbard?

Captain Kevin Hibbard is an expert in marlin fishing. He has fished all over the world and is known for his knowledge and experience in dealing with big marlin.

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Kevin Hibbard

Captain Kevin Hibbard, a renowned blue marlin fishing expert, has a deep connection to the ocean and has honed his skills in heavy tackle and lure fishing. He has honed his knowledge and techniques from the best captains in the business, including Henry Chee and George Parker. Hibbard's approach to fishing is simple, focused, and trusting, ensuring the best lures are chosen for the ocean's conditions. His dedication to the craft and his passion for the ocean's giants make him a sought-after fishing expert.

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