#19 – Jig-n-Pig
Jig-and-pig… jig-n-pig… jig-and-trailer…
Call it what you want, the jig is one of the most effective big bass lures available. It’s extremely versatile and can be fished all year long, deep or shallow, fast or slow. There is SO much to cover on the topic of jigs, one article isn’t nearly enough. They come in many different varieties: flipping jigs, swim jigs, football jigs, casting jigs, grass jigs, hair jigs, and more–all of which will be covered in future posts. For now, this will serve as an introduction for those of you that have yet to tie one on.
There are two basic components of the jig-n-pig; a skirted jig head and a soft plastic trailer. The trailer is attached to the jig hook to mimic the look and action of a crayfish.
The “pig” name comes from the traditional use of a pork rind trailers. Some anglers still prefer to use pork trailers in certain conditions, but they have become far less popular with the development of soft plastics.
The most common use for a jig is fishing heavy cover. The weed guard in front of the hook allows the lure to make its way in and out of the thickest lunker bass habitats the same way a crayfish might get around. For this reason, jig fishing takes a lot of concentration. When the lure is dropped right on top of a bass you might notice a quick line twitch as the fish inhales the lure without running off with it. When you notice your line jump, reel in any slack and set the hook HARD. You’ll need a solid hook set to penetrate the fish’s jaw with a heavy jig hook as well as pull the fish out of the cover it’s caught up in. With this in mind, jig fishing takes some heavy duty gear–heavy line, a long stout rod, and a high gear ratio reel to quickly pull bass out of the thick stuff. We will cover more specifics on gear and the ways to fish jigs in future posts.
Some beginner jig-n-pig notes:
- Combine a soft plastic trailer with a skirted jig hook to mimic a crayfish.
- Fish the lure in heavy cover like weeds, trees, rocks, etc.
- Think about how a crayfish would move along the bottom. Drag it slowly, give it a little hop, or let it sit still.
- Pay close attention to your line. Set the hook if something doesn’t feel right. Nothing hurt if there isn’t a fish on the other end.
- Try dark colors combos like black and blue in water with low visibility. Natural colors like green or brown for clear water. Experiment to find the right jig-n-pig combo for your local fishing hole.
- Be patient and have fun! This lure can attract some BIG bass.
Jig fishing is an endless subject. New lessons are discovered by bass anglers around the world every day. Keep an eye out for more posts in the future.