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Swim Jigs & Jig Worms


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Any one have any special advice with these two techniques. I see them mentioned as primary options for a lot of guys and i just have no luck them.

Swim Jig - I spinnerbait fish alot and do quite well with that and most talk about using a swim jig in similar situations. I've tried a few different variations of swim jigs in areas i would use spinnerbaits and basically zeroed each time. So any particulars on jigs and what you are using for trailers, depth, retrieve etc you could offer up i'd like to get this figured out. I've actually had much better luck using swimbaits as alternatives to spinnerbaits which seems opposite of many on here.

Jig Worms - don't get this set up at all, all i get is weeds. Is this used more on hard bottoms with little vegetation? or is there a type of jig that keeps the hook covered. I keep thinking of using this as an alternative to a jig/pig but i can't fish it in the same areas without fouling. I was using a smaller jighead with a 7 inch powerworm primarily and nothing doing. But i honestly have not given it much time becasue of my issues with the weeds, and it seems too light to fish at any depth. I'd be curious to hear what your guys set up is and how / where you are using them.

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I love using swim jigs in reeds/bulrushes and in wild rice early/late in the season. My favorite is North Star's swim jig with either a ribbon tail worm or a paddle tail trailer. My favorite trailer is the Berkley Havoc Grass Pig.

They're also good as a search bait if you're fishing big flats and want to locate active fish.

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Hiya -

Re: swim jigs - I do use them in a lot of situations where I'd have used a spinnerbait in the past. I think this is especially true in clear water. I do tend to use them more early and late in the season than in mid-summer, but that may be just a personal quirk. I use 1/4 oz swim jigs most of the time, although I will use a 3/8 oz now and then if I either want to fish it deeper, or fish it faster and keep it down. I use a variety of trailers, from single or double tail grubs to thumper tail swimbaits like a Keitech Swing Impact. As for retrieves, I usually fish them fairly fast, and am always varying the retrieve with short pauses - not really a dead stop and fall, but just a stutter-step in the retrieve - bursts of speed, crashing it into cover, etc,. On a steady retrieve a swim jig is fairly subtle, and mixing it up really helps trigger fish. I fish them on a 7'2" MH X-fast rod with either 30 or 50# braid, depending on how heavy the cover is.

If you're having success with swimbaits, maybe try a swimbait as a swim jig trailer? Or, just use a swimbait if that's what works.

Re: jigworms... they can take some time spent to get the hang of them sometimes. I fish them on a 6'10" or 7' medium power x-fast spinning rod with either 6 or 8 lb fluorocarbon. Jigworms are, to me anyhow, basically a drop bait. Fish hit them on the fall, and when the jigworm bite is on the slower the fall the better as often as not. Unless wind makes me go heavier, I fish a 3/32 oz jighead the vast majority of the time, even if I'm fishing a weedline in 18' of water. Fishing a jigworm is kind of strange if you're used to heavier baits. You're really not going to feel it most of the time. Actually, if you can feel it, you're using too much weight. You're just fishing the weight of the jig. Pitch it out, and really, really watch your line. If you see it move, twitch, or just go slack before it should have, set the hook. Back when I guided I used to tell clients "If you think it's a weed, set the hook. If you KNOW it's a weed...set the hook. If you aren't sure...set the hook."

Another advantage of light jigheads is they will settle on weeds rather than rocketing down through them and hanging up. With a med or med-hvy power X-fast rod, if you hang on a weed, get the line tight, then snap your wrist to pop it loose. Most of the time it will come free. You can fish a jigworm through most weed cover like coontail and cabbage. If it's a lot of stringy junk weeds, you might be better off with something else though. When you snap it off a weed, let it drop again. Lots of jigworm bites come right after you snap it off a weed. The key though is a short, sharp snap of the writs. If you just pull, you get salad every time. Also can be trouble if the rod you're using is too soft or too slow. That's why I really prefer an x-fast rod. I use a Powell Endurance 6'10" M X-fast most of the time, and Powell Endurance rods tend to be 1/2 a power or so heavy compared to most rods, so it's on the med-heavy side of medium.

As to where to fish them, they shine on deep weed edges. They're not a great search bait, but you can be efficient with them - fire them out, let the drop, lift/fall a couple times, then reel in and do it again. I never fish them all the way back to the boat, and sometimes, all I do is cast them out, let it drop, then reel right in and cast again. Boat control and reading electronics are big factors - have to know what you're casting to.

Really though, for many MN waters, jigworms are exceptionally effective, but it's a learned skill, and it can take some time.



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I've been looking for a situation to use a jigworm, but most of the lakes I fish have stained or green water with junk weeds and an undefined weed edge. I would assume you want the opposite conditions for optimal jig worm fishing. Unless you're fishing deeper than 10', is there an advantage to using a jig worm over a wacky or t-rigged senko?

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I think the reason for the jig worm vs a texas rigged one is that the jigworm falls straight down vs the texas rigged one falling at an arch. This allows you to drop your worm closer to the weed edge in deeper water.

They do work best on a deeper, well defined weed line for me. Calmer days are also better as it is a slower presentation, and you can tell when it hits bottom or see a fish hit it then. If it is scattered weeds, then I find myself using the texas rigged worms more as they are more weedless. My favorite bait with them is a 4" ring worm with a curly tail.

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