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cfh
11-08-2006, 11:08 AM
I stated in another thread that I mostly fish with minnows for crappie and have good luck with them. I have fish with jigs and catch one every once in a while, so I don't use them much. I know it's me that is doing something wrong, because to many people catch fish on them. My question is. Is there a standard method to fish with jigs or do I keep trying until I get it right.
I have fished all my life, but until now have never just targeted crappie. Thanks in advance for your help.

deathb4disco
11-08-2006, 12:27 PM
Jigs work! They will catch crappie, bluegill, bass, trout, etc. If there's a universal lure, it's the jig.

My basic technique: 1/32 oz. white or chartreuse marabou and chenille jig, 4lb. line and UL spinning outfit. Cast the jig out, count it down to the desired depth, and bring it back with a slow, steady retrieve. Change depths till you get hits.

A great book to learn jig fishing is "Charlie Brewer on Slider Fishing" by the late, great Charlie Brewer:

http://www.fishingworld.com/Slider/Details.tmpl?ID=95687443052914&Cart=1090...ackle&SKU=Book

Although Charlie's talking mostly about bass and his slider worm, the technique is the same. There's a lot of jig fishing wisdom in that little book.

skiptomylu
11-08-2006, 01:06 PM
I stated in another thread that I mostly fish with minnows for crappie and have good luck with them. I have fish with jigs and catch one every once in a while, so I don't use them much. I know it's me that is doing something wrong, because to many people catch fish on them. My question is. Is there a standard method to fish with jigs or do I keep trying until I get it right.
I have fished all my life, but until now have never just targeted crappie. Thanks in advance for your help.
I have a some what simple beginner type How To on my web site. Take a look and see if any of that may help. Here is a link... http://thumpitjigs.com/HowTo.html

cfh
11-08-2006, 01:23 PM
deathb4disco and skiptomylu, thanks for the advice and links. I have bookmarked both of them and will study them tonight when things calm down.

mighty
11-08-2006, 04:10 PM
Just my two sense. I have been sitting next to someone catching fish on jigs. We both were using the same lure and everything. The difference he know about the thump, and he watched his line. Crappie bite so soft that sometimes you wont feel a thing. You have to watch for the line to jump, and also feel for the thump.
Just keep using until you notice a pattern.

crappieseeker
11-08-2006, 05:55 PM
mighty you got it right. alot of people dont know that much about jigs. I have actually watched people get bites before that they never detect, and of course most of the time they dont get the fish. Crappie have a different bite to them and when you learn to use the jigs, you can tell 99 percent of the time by the feel of the strike that its a crappie.

Darryl Morris
11-08-2006, 06:55 PM
Whether you're tightlining a jig vertically or casting and retreiving a jig, it was the bite that was so hard for me to detect when I first started using jigs. Of course, sometimes they just engulf it and run away with it. That's easy.

It's the light, finicky bite that is so hard to feel. Crappie can suck it in and blow it out so fast. You might be finding yourself missing the bite altogether because you didn't feel it or you're doing something with rod and hand position that is preventing you from feeling a light bite. Sometimes it's setting the hook on the blow out in a delayed reaction (we call that being asleep at the reel). Once I started reacting to that little "tic" or even a line going limp situation, I started catch more fish on a jig.

One thing an older gentleman told me one day is, "When are you going to set the hook?" Of course, I had no idea what he was talking about and he said I'd been getting bites all day. Apparently, he could see them but I couldn't feel them. He told me to close my eye. I did and then it was on. I felt that light bite and then I knew what I was looking for. Another thing I do (I mostly tightline vertically) is run the line between my fingers so I can feel the slightest of bites or even the line going slack. Stay in contact with your jig at all times and set the hook on anything different. Always be in a position (hand, fingers, rod, reel, etc.) to ensure you'll feel the slightest of bites and to instinctively set the hook. After a while, you'll build muscle memory for it and you'll be setting the hook in your sleep.

Have some fun with your fishing buddies and when they're not looking and paying attention, reach over there with the tip of your rod and tap their line. See if they set the hook, LOL.

CrappiePappy
11-09-2006, 12:41 AM
I stated in another thread that I mostly fish with minnows for crappie and have good luck with them. I have fish with jigs and catch one every once in a while, so I don't use them much. I know it's me that is doing something wrong, because to many people catch fish on them. My question is. Is there a standard method to fish with jigs or do I keep trying until I get it right.
I have fished all my life, but until now have never just targeted crappie. Thanks in advance for your help.

If you haven't already ... read this article : http://www.crappie.com/articles/crappiepappy.htm

Use the method ... it works. And, pay close attention to the paragraph about "detecting bites" ... alot of those "signs of getting a hit", are also present when using other methods (like casting, & vertical jigging).

There's no "standard method" ... there's just lots of different methods. Which method you use depends on the whereabouts of the fish (depth, proximity to cover, type of cover) and how best to present the jig to them. How much "fun" you get out of using a certain method, will also help persuade your tendancy to use it. And, success with any particular method, will definitely increase your "fun" :D Ain't no shame in using minnows, either, especially if they put fish in the boat ;) Some. myself included, use all "three" :confused: .... minnow on a hook - jig alone - and minnow on a jig.

I love to cast jigs ... I'm a line watcher ... I'd rather "see" a hit, than feel it. I use weedless jigheads, in most cases, because I'm putting my jig right into the submerged cover and dragging it across/around/thru that cover. In those cases where I'm fishing open water, for suspended fish, I may opt to use a non-weedless jig.

I don't think you're "doing something wrong". You just don't have the same confidence level in jigs, that you do in minnows. That's understandable ... I'm a converted "minnow dunker", myself. :D Using jigs, and having success with them, will build your confidence level in them. Try this - next time you "find" the Crappie, and you're catching them on minnows ... put the minnows away. Quietly move away from the spot, but stay within a couple of boat lengths of it (or close enough to where you can cast your jig beyond that spot) ... cast the jig and hold your rod at the 10 o:clock position, and start reeling ... VERY SLOWLY. Watch the line !! When you see it "jump", even slightly, set the hook. If it starts moving off to one side ... set the hook. If it goes slack, and you're sure it hasn't hit bottom ... set the hook. If the line doesn't continue to get closer to you (where it enters the water), as you reel in, you may be over a branch or obstacle ... continue to slowly reel in, but concentrate your "feel" (thru the rod) and watch for the line to straighten out (between rod tip and point of entry into the water). When you feel the rod tip start to bend towards the jig .... drop the rod tip about 6 inches and then lift the rod tip back up about 12 inches (all in one smooth motion). This should cause the jig to "bump over" the obstacle. The jig is less likely to hang into it, if the hook point is "up" ... hang-ups occur when the jig is coming over an obstacle and the hook point drops to the side. And, be prepared for a possible hit, once the jig has "bumped over" and is once again coming towards you !! I don't know how many times I've had that happen !! Why, you ask, would you stop catching fish with minnows ... and start playing with jigs ?? Simple ... you know they're there - you know they're biting - you know how deep they are - you know what they're around .... that's the BEST time to build your confidence in using jigs, as well as teaching you what bites look like/feel like on a jig. Crappie will, sometimes, "play" with a minnow ... and because it's on a slack portion of the line (between sinker & hook), you intently watch your rod tip or float for a sign that the fish has the minnow in its mouth. With a jig, you're in direct contact with the jig ... so any line movement or rod tip bend is direct transmission of that sign. You don't "guess" the fish has the bait, you pretty much "know" it does. And ... if, for some reason, you fail to catch those fish with a jig ....... simply move back to your previous position, and break out the minnows. You can always try it again, another day. You can also use the Vertical Casting method ... in place of, or while using the minnows !! ...... luck2ya ... cp :cool:

cfh
11-09-2006, 09:33 AM
Thanks everyone for the advice, tips and links. I will put them all to good use.
If you have more advice and tips, bring it on. Knowledge is a good thing

ThrillSeeker
11-09-2006, 10:06 AM
Does anyone fish jigs under a bobber?

CrappiePappy
11-09-2006, 10:44 AM
Does anyone fish jigs under a bobber?

Yeah, I've done that "some" ... but find it restrictive, as far as depth control is concerned. It's great if you're fishing shallow ... or know the depth of the tops of submerged cover. It also works great if you have to fish 'dead slow', and let your jig "soak" for awhile in one place. .... cp :cool:

ThrillSeeker
11-09-2006, 01:16 PM
So when you're vertical jigging, what depth do you consider "spooking the fish" range?

Ken Kinser
11-09-2006, 05:04 PM
Best way to fish Jigs is don't take minnows with you, yes jig under bobber is a real good way especilly in weed bed, or casting in timber, i fish jigs and minnows and as a combaation but i had to leave the minnows to get use to fishing jigs, and work at fishing them. Jigs will catch larger crappie once u get the hang of fishing them

ThrillSeeker
11-10-2006, 09:15 AM
What's the minimum recommended depth for vertical jigging? I've always been worried that I'd spook the fish if I positioned my boat right above them in too shallow water.

Darryl Morris
11-10-2006, 05:25 PM
What's the minimum recommended depth for vertical jigging? I've always been worried that I'd spook the fish if I positioned my boat right above them in too shallow water.

Wow, what a question and a good one too! Most of the time we do what we call "Hovering." We are over or just to the side of the brushpile and pitching jigs or dipping minnows in and around the spot. I guess the shallowest I've ever hovered "over" a brushpile was in about 8-10' of water. Now, in the Spring when the crappie are shallower than that, we stay off the brushpile, buckbrush, willow tree, stump, etc. and pitch the jig into it not letting it fall too deep and do the best we can to rip-a-lip. Sometimes, even with clients, I will run the bobberstopper down to 18" or so and have them pitch the minnow or jig into the spawning beds doing the best I can to stay off them so as not to spook'em out.