The following was taken from a Pier Fishing In California Message Board Posting on 7/20/2000 by Leapin' Bass and is used with the author's permission.  It is a perfect description of lure fishing technique for halibut. 

For halibut in 0 - 5 ft. of water I use 3 inch Big Hammers (Prizm Pepper Trout, Clear Red, & Mackerel) on 3/16 or 1/4 oz. Fishco lead heads and usually just reel them straight in giving little shakes of the rod tip.

For halibut in 4 - 10 ft. of water I use 4 or 5 inch Big Hammers (Blue Green Sardine, Silver Sardine, Kei Lime, Clear Red, Bleeding Olive Herring, Rainbow Trout, Mackerel) on 3/8 - 1/2 oz. heads. My typical retrieve is reel 2 or 3 times, stop hit bottom, repeat.

For halibut in 10 - 20 ft. of water I use 5 or 6 inch Big Hammers on 1/2 - 3/4 oz. heads. Same colors and retrieve as above.

Experimenting with different retrieves is key. I've had halibut in 15 ft. more of water come up and smack a plastic I was reeling straight in just under the surface. Up in Monterey last spring I was fishing from the shore near the hotel and couldn't get them to hit the retrieve mentioned above (0-5 ft. water) so I started bumping it along the bottom and that's what got them.

Remember this... Halibut live on the bottom but they don't necessarily eat there. Most people assume since halibut are bottom fish that they are also bottom feeders. This is not necessarily true. They are predators and will chase schools of fish like any other predator. I'm not saying don't fish near the bottom; I'm only saying don't limit yourself to only fishing the bottom.

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