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Thread: Jigging

  1. #1
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    Default Jigging

    Almost all of my halibut fishing has been done by putting a herring on a circle hook and letting it soak for as long as it takes. However, I keep hearing proponants of jigging say that jigging out fishes bait nearly every time. I've tried jigging a couple times and have not had any luck. I guess one question is how aggresivley do you work the rod? Do you move the rod just enough to give life to the jig or do you move the rod tip from all the way down to as far up as you can go? Or, is the answer somewhere in between.

    Also, if jigging is more productive than bait, why don't the charters do more of it?

    Thanks,

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    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    I use a jig probably 5x as often as I will just soak bait. The added movement brings the lure to life and induces a lot more strikes from what I have found. My guess about charters is that circle hooks are almost idiot proof and they can simply hand the customer the rod and tell them to hold on . Jigging usually uses J hooks and the fisherman is responsible to set the hook at the right time which actually takes a minute bit of skill .

    I use a large jig head (10-12oz) with different color rubber tails, then I will cut a small cross section of herring and put it on the hook as well for a little scent. I have heard many options for adding bait like squid, salmon skin, etc...

    The action is whatever you want it to be. If the water is slack and calm and I am fishing straight down, I will do a mix of 75% short strokes (<3') to 25% full strokes (raising the rod high). I find I get more strikes on the shorter jigs and they are usually on the fall or right as I turn to pull it up. It seems like the fish will lay on it when it hits the ground to "trap" it and I end up snagging a few. On the fall, remember to keep the line snug and don't let it go slack. They often hit the fall and will let it go before you can react if the line is slack.
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    Up until last summer I rocked the same pink sparkly squid jig for several years and outfished anyone on the boat time and time again, my catch was atleast 4:1 against anyone else when I jigged with it over a regular hook/herring
    We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it. We get it rough enough at home; in towns and cities; in shops, offices, stores, banks anywhere that we may be placed

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    Default Action

    AKMud,

    You mentioned how you jig during flat water conditions; how does your method change when you're fishing on 3' - 6' rollers?

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    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    For rollers, I don't give the rod much action. Just try to pay attention to what the boat is doing and imagine what the bait action looks like on the bottom. I will give some occasional quick jerks when fishing rollers to spice it up a bit, but the boat action keeps the lure moving pretty well, just add to the action a little bit.
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    Default Thanks

    Looks like the few times I've tried it, I was working way too hard at it; I was moving the rod tip 6' - 8' up and down constantly. It doesn't take long to lose interest doing that.

    It sounds your technique for jigging Halibut is the same thing I do when mooching for Silvers. Different size lures and different depths but same idea.

    Thanks again.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    The only time I drop bait is when I'm wanting to leave the rod in a holder, other then that I jig.

    How much you move the rod depends on what type of line you are using, and how deep you are fishing. If you run mono line and fish 200' of water, you likely couldn't move the rod enough to get much action. But if you're fishing braid shallow, it doesn't take much action.

    I do recomend you get a jigging rod, they have the backbone to pull up a big fish, but they are light enough not to wear you out running jigs all day. I also like to run 50# braid, as you can use slightly lighter jigs, and a two speed reel is nice for retrievals if you're drifting high spots.

    The nice thing about jigs is the same rig can take rock fish, ling cod and halibut. I did well with a 14 oz butterfly style jig I got off of e-bay, but unfortunately I managed to loose all three of them this summer Often times I'll cut herring into 1" steaks and use them to sweeten the jigs.

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    Default Anchor vs. Drift

    I have been soaking bait on anchor out of Seward in about 250' of water. Some days are better than others but I usually go home with fish in the box.

    Do you prefer to drift or sit on anchor? If drifting, do you have any problems keeping your jigg on the bottom?

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    Member AKCAPT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boater View Post
    I have been soaking bait on anchor out of Seward in about 250' of water. Some days are better than others but I usually go home with fish in the box.

    Do you prefer to drift or sit on anchor? If drifting, do you have any problems keeping your jigg on the bottom?
    I would spool up a reel with some #50 pound braid like Spiderwire and drop a 6 - 8 oz jig with a white power bait tail down to the bottom when you are soaking bait and I bet you will go home with a lot more fish in your box. jig it slowly and set the hook when you get a bite!

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    Default Well, I guess that settles it

    I'll be making some trips down to B&J's over the course of the winter and picking up a selection of different jigs.

    Thanks for the advice.

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    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Boater View Post
    Almost all of my halibut fishing has been done by putting a herring on a circle hook and letting it soak for as long as it takes. However, I keep hearing proponants of jigging say that jigging out fishes bait nearly every time. I've tried jigging a couple times and have not had any luck. I guess one question is how aggresivley do you work the rod? Do you move the rod just enough to give life to the jig or do you move the rod tip from all the way down to as far up as you can go? Or, is the answer somewhere in between.

    Also, if jigging is more productive than bait, why don't the charters do more of it?

    Thanks,
    Jigging can get the fish to bite when they have the case of lock jaw. Jigging you will loose more hook up then fishing with bait. I love jigging now. When I jig I hit bottom and I lift the jig off about two to three feet. Most of my hits come when the jig is on the down side. On how fast I go that depends on the day. some days you have to barley move it and there on it and others you have move it alittle faster.

    Color still up on the air with that one.
    Size I think can play a factor. I go big!!!!!
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    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

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    Alaska what are you favorite colors. I know that changes from day to day but there have to be some favorites that you go to first.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by kgpcr View Post
    Alaska what are you favorite colors. I know that changes from day to day but there have to be some favorites that you go to first.

    I like to jig stuff that looks like candlefish, squid, herring, or octopus. There are a lot of good look-a-likes out there. While I would say that color seems to matter, it just doens't seem to make a huge difference. But, with that said, have an assortment because sometimes it can. Like others have said, when I jig, I normally catch 4 times as many fish as anyone else on the boat that is simply soaking bait. As others have pointed out, braided line is a nice way to go. However, out of Seward Daycron isn't bad either as the tides are not crazy big like they are in the Cook Inlet. Mono in depths past 100 fett is a complete waste of time. Do know, when you belly hook a hog you are going to be in the fight of your life. They normally get really pissed......

  14. #14
    Member arcticfox77's Avatar
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    Default go for the double tails

    i think they outfish the singles anyday of the week. white and pink are my two go to colors when the fish are being finiky...

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    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kgpcr View Post
    Alaska what are you favorite colors. I know that changes from day to day but there have to be some favorites that you go to first.

    White with Red tails, Chartreuse and green. Blue head with a white body and brownish smoke color with metallic flakes.
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  16. #16

    Default Fine....

    I have found white works well too. But, my favorite jig is my black pipe jig with the flashing LED. I don't know why it works, but it does.

  17. #17
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    Onething this year I tried and is sold on is the Boneyard jigs. The tails are bigger and last allot longer them other jigs.

    Also the double tail I like allot.
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

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    Default Rigging

    On another thread I see some discussion regarding how to rig jigs up with various leader material.

    Why? Is there a reason why you shouldn't just attach the jig directly to your line using a corkscrew swivle? I can see some benifit to using leader material for protection against teeth and rocks but is that pretty much the only reason for doing it?

  19. #19
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
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    I do it atraight to the corkscrew. I will say this. Some of the Lings this year swallowed the jig. Never lost one but with the teeth on the line it could of snapped very easy.
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  20. #20
    Member Mort's Avatar
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    If you are using braided line, you will probably want a leader of either heavy mono or gagnon. This will give you something to hold onto as you try to either land or release the fish. Holding on to the main line will get you cut in a hurry!

    Also, when using lead-head jigs (12 oz or larger), consider some kind of stinger hook. I lost tons of grub tails getting torn off as fish might grab the tail, not the head of the grub. As I set the hook, the fish winds up with only a mouthful of rubber and no metal. Put on the stinger hook, and hookup percentage went up dramatically. Just get the ones with a nylon loop built in (Gamakatsu is what I use) and attach it to the main hook of the leadhead with a loopover clove hitch.

    As for fishing success, I definitely prefer jigs, but I do a combination of bait and jigs until I know there are fish in the area. My biggest fish are caught on jigs!

    Mort

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