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JT Bagwell

Do You Struggle?

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I think it is pretty common knowledge that I am a jig guy.

 

I love fishing jigs.

 

I love the fact that I can skip and pitch them into areas that

most guys could only do while they were sleeping (ie dreaming).

 

Did I mention that I love fishing jigs (especially Siebert Outdoors jigs = shameless plug for a board sponsor)? lol

 

With all that being said, I read a lot of posts on here, Facebook, Twitter, etc

where anglers are talking about how much they struggle with fishing jigs.

 

So do you struggle with fishing jigs or are you a jig angler too?

 

If so, what is it that you feel is the reason you struggle with them?

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In my case I am fairly new to jigs. I ordered some Evolution jigs off Fishhound that I just recently received. Here are my struggles with jigs:

1. Jig seems to be a fairly universal term used in bass fishing that can confuse a novice like me. With terms like lead head jig, football jig, and swim jig, how am I supposed to know the difference and know when to use which one?

2. How am I supposed to know the best technique to use when fishing a jig? Do I use a steady, slow retrieve or just bounce it along the bottom?

3. After receiving my Evolution jigs, I carefully tied one on and added a matching trailer only to promptly get it hung up on the bottom and breaking it off a few minutes later.

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To me, strike detection is harder with a jig than a T-rig even if the weight is pegged.

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I have been using jigs for the last 2 years and am gaining confidence in their ability to produce nice bass. My main struggle is that I hate losing jigs and will often fall back on a Texas rig in an effort to save some money. Losing 5 jigs in 6 casts turns me off rather fast.

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Catt posted a thread on this subject recently. The incredible jig, it can catch nearly every type of predator fish but not all the time.

You can try to force feed bass jigs, but when they don't want it, they will not strike it! It's knowing when to hold em or fold em!

I doubt anyone has spent more time on the water jig fishing than I have..about 6 decades, longer than most bass anglers have lived. Rarely do I bass fish and not try jigs, just keeping the bass honest.

Strike detection can be difficult and the majority of bass jig anglers miss more strikes than they detect. I hear it now...not me!!! Guess what, that includes you and me! We all detect the very aggressive active bass strike, we all miss some some strikes that we simply can't detect. The frustrating part of missed jig strikes is bass over 8 lbs with big mouths that reject the jig before we know they bit it. Fish long enough and you will detect that big bass strike and that is what jig fishing is all about.

Tom

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I'm a jig guy no doubt. With that being said I struggled more to learn how to fish a jig than probably any other technique I've ever tried to learn. 

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I am a novice bass fisher, and I have had trouble adjusting to jigs as well.  I can't seem to get my jig in the water without making too much commotion. 

- Is it mandatory to be able to pitch to fish jigs effectively?  (I still use only a spinning reel and have trouble pitching with it).

-I have caught 3 fish on swim jigs, but none on a standard jig.  I fish the standard jigs pretty much the same way I do T-rigged worms/brush hogs/grubs/etc, but with no success.  Am I fishing too fast, too slow?

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In my case I am fairly new to jigs. I ordered some Evolution jigs off Fishhound that I just recently received. Here are my struggles with jigs:

1. Jig seems to be a fairly universal term used in bass fishing that can confuse a novice like me. With terms like lead head jig, football jig, and swim jig, how am I supposed to know the difference and know when to use which one?

2. How am I supposed to know the best technique to use when fishing a jig? Do I use a steady, slow retrieve or just bounce it along the bottom?

3. After receiving my Evolution jigs, I carefully tied one on and added a matching trailer only to promptly get it hung up on the bottom and breaking it off a few minutes later.

I'm with  you man , I have an assortment  of all you mentioned ,I bought a rod and reel just for jig fishing but it's hard and frustrating to get good at it.

I'm pretty much convinced that it's almost impossible to learn how to jig fish on your own.

 

I had the pleasure of fishing a little while ago on someone else's boat and watched him work a jig almost exclusively the whole time .

 

I knew after by watching him how little I knew about jig fishing,

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I dont know anything about jig fishing other than you hop them in the bottom and you pitch or flip them. I dont know how to pitch and while Ive tried it a bunch of times i cant do it. I can flip but I dont thing thats the best way to cast em, considering I have to be relatively close to the targets.

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Never caught a fish in a jig.. Have tried for hours in prime locations with nithing

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No doubt in my mind nothing beats a jig.  Learning how to fish them in the surf greatly improved my bass jigging, there really isn't much difference.  Whether I use a traditional bass style jig, flats jig, bucktail or flairhawk, trailer or no trailer, I can work them off the bottom or swim them with an erratic motion, they catch fish.

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I love fishing jigs, but when I started using them I didn't have a clue.  I read all the articles here on BR, and looked up other articles on the internet.  Seven months later I finally caught one on a black jig with a black trailer.

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I struggle with jigs ;)

When I pull up on structure & look down @ the Texas rig & jig on my deck I sruggle deciding which one to pick up.

If y'all really want to learn how to feel the bite go out @ night during a new moon!

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I've done OK with jigs, but they aren't my go-to by any means. I too found some of the info on this site and others to be confusing or even contradictory. (How does one hop it AND maintain contact with the bottom?) My kids have each caught fish on 1/4 oz. Strike King Bitsy Bugs, so it's not impossible. We have had the most success where the bottom composition is mostly rocky, especially transition areas from weeds to gravel to rip-rap. We also get hung up and broken off the most in these same areas, and I tend to pretty quickly switch baits at such times, so jigs really haven't gotten a fair shake from me probably; other lures just plain work better for me. 

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I am learning to fish jigs and have a few plano boxes full of them just ot give me extra motivation :)  While i have been no means super succesfull the few fish i catch seem to be larger than other techniques.  So to me, it is a big fish bait that may be slow action wise but a few decent fish can make the wait a little longer.

 

I still have a lot to learn and every trip out i have a jig tied on and try it in al lthe usual spots.  One thig that has helped me a lot is going out and working on what everything feels like.  I take one of the seibert brush head jigs and toss it in the laydowns and stick ups and go super slow trying to feel every limb and when it gets hung a little, how to get it back out again.  While i have caught a few fish doing this, what it has done is helped me to stay in contact with the jig and tell the difference between somethign that is stationary and a fish.  I do the same thing in the grass and in ledges.  It still amazes me how much of the bottom contour you can figure out just by dragging a jig super slow through an area.

 

One place i do pretty well with jigs is the smaller versions for smallies.  Seems like no matter the time of year they flat out produce.

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So could one of you guys who are highly knowledgeable about jigs give us novices a breakdown of the various kinds of jigs?  As I stated in my earlier post, I have a lot of confusion with regard to the difference between a swim jig, a football head jig, a leadhead jig, etc?  Can somebody just give a clear and concise breakdown of the various types of jigs, how to fish them, and in what conditions to use them?

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So could one of you guys who are highly knowledgeable about jigs give us novices a breakdown of the various kinds of jigs?  As I stated in my earlier post, I have a lot of confusion with regard to the difference between a swim jig, a football head jig, a leadhead jig, etc?  Can somebody just give a clear and concise breakdown of the various types of jigs, how to fish them, and in what conditions to use them?

http://www.bassresource.com/bass-fishing-forums/topic/12403-jig-fishing-questions/

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I enjoy fishing jigs, starting learning to use jigs a few years ago.  I read, watched many videos including Gene's on Jigs and went to a local pond and learned how to use them.  They key here is time on the water and really when learning any new technique for me I need to know that I will catch bass to build my confidence level.  This pond I would normally catch a few fish, when I tried the jig for the first time I think I caught 12 in two hours which for this pond is my record, this gave me confidence that I needed.  Rarely I find do bass eat how I want them to and most times a jig works, once a bass is hooked I have never lost one.  A jig basically imitates two food items, mainly crayfish and sometimes bait fish but I believe bluegill specifically, swim jigs are another story.  For me imitating a crayfish is easy because I grew up in streams with these awesome animals so I have a decent understanding of how they swim and move in the water and this is what I imitate when I jig fish, warmer waters I may hop it more(no more then two hops at a time and not huge vertical hops), cooler waters I may drag it more but I start fast and slow it down and let the fish tell me how they want it.  Some action of a jig imitates a bluegill especially color choices, but really your making a jig look like a crayfish so imitate one.

 

Swim Jigs are new to me caught my first fish with one this year, they are just that you swim them slow or fast your mainly imitating a bait-fish.  If you look at a swim jig its more point shape head, more fish looking, the skirts are normally shorter and you typically use a trailer with lot of action, I know most guys here use a swimbait as a trailer but I caught my fish using a rage craw..

 

 

Some jig heads are better suited for weeds, some for rock such as a Football jigs the head design keeps them from snagging.  The head design is what determines the use, not always but they are the baseline choices.

 

Now in my tackle box I have more jigs and trailers than any other lure combined they are a must learned technique in my opinion.

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So could one of you guys who are highly knowledgeable about jigs give us novices a breakdown of the various kinds of jigs? As I stated in my earlier post, I have a lot of confusion with regard to the difference between a swim jig, a football head jig, a leadhead jig, etc? Can somebody just give a clear and concise breakdown of the various types of jigs, how to fish them, and in what conditions to use them?

I have posted several threads on this subject and don't know how to recover them on this site using the search tool.

You can swim any jig by retrieving it through the water column instead of slowly along the bottom.

There are hundreds of jig head shapes, all trying to improve some design feature to enhance the jig performance. Knowone has the panacea jig design for all presentations.

Common mistakes are;

1. Using jigs that are too heavy.

2. Using jigs with the wrong style hook, size and dull points.

3. Fishing jigs in the wrong place at the wrong time. Location is critical to bass fishing success.

4. Fishing jigs with too light of tackle.

5. Trying to fish jigs up hill from shore.

6. Relying of the rod to feel strikes.

7. Not setting the hook fast enough.

8. Failing to concentrate on what the jig is doing or feels like.

Tom

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I struggled with the weedless "bass" variety for years.  I'd used bucktails, hair jigs, and grubs on ball heads for years, but that was more like cast and reel in type fishing, or letting current sweep the bait, ticking along the bottom.  It wasn't until I saw an older man meticulously pick apart a weed flat that I got it.  He used short casts - pitches, and an occasional flip cast, and simply tore up the fish with his graceful, quiet approach.  I still can't work a jig like he did, but I'll die trying.

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J Franco that's what I call "Finesse" fishing ;)

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I liken it to finesse as well.  Not as in finesse gear, but as in finesse through the weeds, quiet, soft presentations.  Once hooked, there's no finesse,but mayhem, lol. 

 

There are other times, when I'm using a heavy, heavy jig, and crashing through there.  But, often it is the former. 

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I have posted several threads on this subject and don't know how to recover them on this site using the search tool.

You can swim any jig by retrieving it through the water column instead of slowly along the bottom.

There are hundreds of jig head shapes, all trying to improve some design feature to enhance the jig performance. Knowone has the panacea jig design for all presentations.

Common mistakes are;

1. Using jigs that are too heavy.

2. Using jigs with the wrong style hook, size and dull points.

3. Fishing jigs in the wrong place at the wrong time. Location is critical to bass fishing success.

4. Fishing jigs with too light of tackle.

5. Trying to fish jigs up hill from shore.

6. Relying of the rod to feel strikes.

7. Not setting the hook fast enough.

8. Failing to concentrate on what the jig is doing or feels like.

Tom

 

Sometimes it's the opposite of number 1,  there are times that I have been successful fishing heavy jigs on outside weedlines to get a reaction strike by bass that will ignore a lighter jig. I tend to do this in clear water lakes during the summer. That said good post.

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I rarely throw anything under 3/8 oz ;)

I rarely throw anything that aint Black-N-Blue!

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Swim jigs are an entirely differnet animal and i have had some really good success with them this year.  I like to think of them as a silent spinnerbait and they come through cover very well.

 

Also depending on teh trailer it is really a skirted swim bait and it gives you the opportunity to let it fall into pockets as you reel through an area.

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