Jig Deep

How to catch fish down deep on vertical jigs.
Steve Dougherty
Whether you call them speed jigs, vertical jigs, flutter jigs or butterfly jigs, these flashy morsels will catch fish in any of the world's oceans. But when it comes to jig selection, anglers must consider weight, shape and size, as well as the target species of game fish, depth and ideal presentation. Tail-weighted jigs typically sink fast, while center-weighted jigs create a lot of commotion and flutter from side-to-side. Long, slender jigs slide from side-to-side as they fall, while shorter jigs flutter with a more erratic action. There's a lot to consider to get the perfect presentation for your targeted quarry. Story by Steve Dougherty
Unlike traditional jigs with hooks at the tail of the bait, vertical jigs feature assist hooks that attach to solid rings. The welded ring is then attached to a split ring, which is attached to the jig. It's important to tie your leader directly to the welded ring -- even the strongest split rings will eventually fail or open. This also enables the jig to hang without obstruction or create leverage to work out the hook. Photo courtesy of Shimano.
Vertical jigs of all shapes and sizes can be worked throughout the entire water column to tempt a variety of pelagic and bottom dwelling species. The trick is to pump and grind in a fast, fluid motion. Photo by Steve Dougherty / Doughertyphotos.com.
Vertical jigs are not cheap and anglers take great lengths to organize and care for these flashy lures. Shimano is among the leaders in the vertical jigging craze. Shimano's Butterfly System continues to produce a range of jig offerings with some slick paint jobs. When fishing with these jigs, you'll want a pair of split ring pliersto make quick adjustments to jig style, weight and shape. This will help you accommodate to the prevalent conditions and species. Photo by Steve Dougherty / Doughertyphotos.com.
Vertical jigging is a strenuous activity and your tackle, especially the rod and reel needs to be bulletproof. Successful vertical jigging requires specialized rods, reels with a high retrieve and braided lines with zero stretch. Okuma's Andros jigging rods are made of IM-6 graphite blanks that feature parabolic action to help anglers overcome big fish. They also utilize split rear grips to make underarm jigging strokes more comfortable. Photo courtesy of Okuma Fishing.
Because vertical jigs are so appealing as they flutter to the bottom, strikes often occur on the fall and can go undetected. It's imperative that anglers stay aware and look for subtle strikes as they rhythmically work their jigs with quick cranks and short sweeps of the rod. Photo by Steve Dougherty / Doughertyphotos.com.
While traditional diamond jigs like these Tady Lures have been around for decades, they continue to fool fish around the world. No matter which style jig you prefer, deep jigging is one technique that's here to stay. Steve Dougherty / Doughertyphotos.com.

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