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Halibut fishing techniques Norway

As more and more people travel in search of the mighty sportfish, the Halibut, you will find that people will come up with brand new ways to catch Halibut and it’s this that leads to the progression of specifically catching and targeting Halibut and the progression of Halibut Fishing techniques Norway.

Halibut floats, circle hooks and anti-twist leads with a split ring

Back when I very first visited Norway I struggled when looking online for “Halibut Fishing techniques Norway” or “How to catch a Halibut” until I visited the waters myself and I was taught very valuable lessons probably like many other anglers new to Norway, in that I thought that everywhere I put my rig I would pull up big Halibut.

Well, this isn’t the case and it’s taken me a few years of learning from some of the best guides in this field on where, when and how to target Halibut while putting all the circumstances in my favour. What I have noticed in the very short time I have been fishing in Norway is the development of shads and how they have changed from very basic rubber shads to something that the actual predator feeds on. Some colours on shads look to us absolutely bizarre but once you put them in the water at a reasonable depth they change their appearance and are irresistible to a feeding Halibut.

Large halibut shads
Our favourite crazy Daisy colour-ways

What I look for in a shad is important, it needs to have good movement in the tail, not too big, excellent quality hooks (replace if the hooks are of not a good standard). Colour isn’t a huge factor to me but what I do like to have is a light coloured shad and a dark coloured shad both will be good choices depending on what the weather is like.

Halibut shads
A Sandy Andy is a perfect Halibut meal!

Halibut Fishing techniques Norway

Be Confident In Your Shad

  • Once you have chosen your shad, and one that you have confidence in which is a huge part of shad fishing and not just about Halibut fishing techniques, Norway requires you to always believe in the shad you are fishing with, this way you will not always be changing the shad and wasting time out of the water as when you have not got a shad down in the kill zone it may be a wasted opportunity, the more time in the water and the less time spent re-rigging with a different shad, the more chance you have got of hooking that fish of a lifetime.

Find The Correct Depth

  • So once you have rigged your shad its time to lower it to the bottom using the correct class rod, once you have felt the shad touch bottom quickly wind it up around 1m from the bottom. Quickly make a mental note of the depth on the plotter. Try not to put too much movement into the shad, try more of a sweeping movement to make the shad look more like a fish rather than an up and down movement.
  • Once you have fished at this depth for about 5 minutes wind your shad up another 1m and repeat the process. After you have tried different depths you will need to lower your shad back to the bottom and then repeat as before. Sometimes you will be surprised on how far up in the water layer you will hook Halibut, you have to remember that the Halibuts eyes are always looking upwards towards the surface so anything in the water columns will be silhouetted and the Halibut will come up to investigate.

Set The Hook

  • Ok, down to the bite – Sometimes Halibut can be very finicky and bites may simply feel like small fish plucking at the tail, just be patient. Finicky bites can last for 15 – 20 minutes but do not strike unless you feel a weight on the other end, just wait for the Halibut to decide that he wants it. You have to remember that down there, there probably isn’t much competition for food so the Halibut will have all the time in the world to decide if he wants to take your lure but when he does and that rod bends over and line screams make sure that you give the rod 3 or 4 really good strikes to pull the hook free of the shad body and in to the Halibuts mouth.
  • On the other hand, the bites can be instant and the Halibut will simply dive-bomb your lure and take it straight away, again make sure you set the hook with 3 or 4 good strikes.

Find The Correct Stance

  • The best way to stand and hold your rod whilst Halibut fishing is as such – Once you have lowered your tackle stand with your rod pointing towards the water’s surface and with a sweeping motion move your shad back and forth. I find the position of your hands is also important, (I am right-handed) I will have my left hand at the top of the handle of the rod with my thumb resting gently on the braid.
  • This will be almost like my bite indicator as any small plucks from the Halibut will be felt up the braid and straight to your thumb. My right hand will then be placed under where the reel is located again with my thumb pressing on the spool of my multiplier. I have my reel in freespool just in case you feel like you need to give the Halibut time to get the shad in its mouth and with my thumb, I hold the spool from moving and when you get the bite and want to strike I just apply more pressure to the spool via my thumb. Once I know the fish is hooked I will then engage the clutch and carry on with the fight.
  • Well hopefully that is shad fishing pretty much covered and this is just my personal thoughts and techniques for Halibut fishing and people will always have their preferred methods, but the above information is enough to get you started. There are other Halibut Fishing Techniques, Norway is a great place to test new methods like dead baiting or Float fishing For Halibut which we have covered in other blogs. This is a great method to attract the bigger fish and makes you feel like a child again, watching that float as it disappears!

Some of my most recommended Halibut destinations are ;

Tight lines


Contact Sportquest Holidays

All the information on our website is kept up to date and we even have live availability. You can also take a look at some of the action which can all be found in our handy Youtube Sea Fishing Playlist. So if you fancy joining us at any of our Norway Sea Fishing destinations you can simply call us on 01603 407596 or you can email us directly at and a member from our sea fishing team will be there to assist you.


  1. Simon Anderson

    Hi Paul.
    With you in havoysund in August.
    I notice alot of YouTube videos people using halibandit lures, do they stock them in the camp shop. We already have the crazy daisey lures.

  2. Paul Stevens

    Hi Lee, The sandy Andy’s come in two sizes 150g or 300g both ideal sizes on certain days

    Tight lines, Paul

  3. Lee Swire

    I can see the Crazy Daisy lures are 300g, how about the Sandy Andy’s? I can’t quite make out the weight / length. Thanks

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