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Jeff Polys

Getting Jiggy with it - March Taney Trip

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Hello, 

I have been bait fishing lake taneycomo for the past 10 years. Drifting, watching rod tips and spending all sort of money on power bait. The whole group a guys i fish with use this method. "what colors are they biting on" is a question often asked. We have been doing our trip in either Feb or early March each year and each year I tell myself each year i will start using jigs. I have even bought several olive and white 1/32 jigs, but never had much luck. In full disclosure, I give up quick once i see my buddies catching them on powerbait. 

So whats the trick? With water moving, do i just throw and sink to the bottom? Jigging my rod each time feel the bottom? With no movement, do i put them on a float around 6 ft deep? We typically float from Fall Creek down in the middle of the channel. We also fish from the powerlines down to the landing.  I bought some 2lb test, and have 6 foot 7 st croix light action rod. 

I just started watching Lileys one cast, which is the best fishing report around. The recent minnow series is great. It looks like I can watch Phil work a jig and get a pretty good idea, but any other tips would be helpful. 

Looking for bigger fish and more action. Please advise. Thanks in advance. 

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Here's a few different videos I made last year of me fishing jigs, straight and micros under a float, as well as one of me fishing a pink power worm under a float. The pink power worm is my favorite technique for putting numbers of fish in the boat. It should give you an idea on where to begin. Lilley's shop can hook you up with anything you need for either technique. I'd recommend orange head/sculpin/peach, green head/sculpin/ginger and white for colors. Black and black/olive are also good, but I always start out with the first three that I mentioned. Rarely do I not catch them on the first two. White can be great or terrible. It's very hit or miss.

Pink Power Worm Under a Float


Micro jig under a float for midging fish (you can throw this on a spinning rod just the same)

 

Water off fishing a 1/16oz jig

 

Heavy generation + flood gates with a 1/8oz jig

 

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Here's a little tip to save you the trouble of re-baiting and extracting swallowed hooks.  Use those jigs tipped with a crappie nibble.  Trout love them too.  I have buddies that have used powerbait for years and I laugh at the troubles they go through catching 12-14 inch trout.  They are re-tying and re-baiting so much that they lose a lot of their fishing time.  Not to mention how often those poor trout swallow that tiny hook covered in dough.  There are days when you can work that jig fast and erratic and days when they want it slower and deep.  Try a few different techniques and you will figure out what works for you and the fish.  Good luck!

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Jigging is an artform, and unique to each individual. :) I've never seen 2 people fish them exactly the same.  Generally there's two main types, slow with an occasional pop and drop, and fast where you are "swimming" the jig.  Both will catch fish, I'm primarily a fast jigging guy, but will slow jig more now although I'm still learning that craft especially out of a boat.    

I also think the water condition plays a big factor in how you want to fish it.  Wade fishing a seam or in faster moving water I will slow it down and drift and pop.  Water off with little or no generation and I'll swim it to get some movement going.  Differs if you are wading or in a boat too in how you want to present it.  Best bet is just force yourself to fish a jig all day with no power bait.  Just need to commit to it for a little bit.  You will likely end up catching less fish than with bait, or ya never know you might be surprised and outfish them too.  Depends on what mood the fish are in. :)

Best advice is watch Seth's videos and watch Phil, Duane, Ryan, and the rest of the crew on Onecast as they provide a video example of some great techniques.

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Once you get the jig thing figured out, you will rarely be out fished by a baiter IMO. The ability to put your lure in front of a lot more hungry trout versus just waiting for one to swim by your bait really pays off. I started off watching Phil's videos and then just tried to mimic him. Learning to keep a jig down in heavy current is definitely the hardest thing to learn when jig fishing. It's much easier with 0-2 units of water running. My buddies that are fairly new to jig fishing are starting to get the hang of it in low generation, but still struggle when the current is heavy.

Another tip is that if the wind is really whipping along, you may need to go to a heavier jig so you can maintain better contact with it. The other thing you can do is go to a fast jigging retrieve like @JestersHK mentioned. When fast jigging, I like to use a rod with a whippier action. My reasoning for this is that since you are constantly bouncing the tip, you risk the trout feeling the sting of the hook point when it bites before you can react and set the hook. A whippier rod lets you get away with this more so because the flex will absorb some of the shock when the jig doesn't give due to being in a fishes mouth. You're giving up sensitivity with the whippier rod, but if you watch your rod tip as it bounces, you will learn to tell when a fish has grabbed the jig by how the rod loads up. When fishing the jig the traditional hop and drop way, you want something with a good backbone to drive the hook home on the hook set.

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Quote

In full disclosure, I give up quick once i see my buddies catching them on powerbait. 

First tip, don't give up on them. I was the same way for a long time. Even in the tournaments that allowed bait. Finally forced myself to stick with the jigs until I learned, or gained confidence in them. I have been a lot more successful since. 

Be ready to buy a lot of jigs. Between losing them, and having enough variety to find what they like, you will end up buying, or tying a bunch. My goto color for several years was sculpin/olive with olive head. But for the past couple years it seems sculpin/peach with burnt orange head has been #1. White can be a killer especially in Winter. I've also had good luck when the water is a bit dingy with black. Then there's Phill's favorite LOL, pink. 

Also don't just stay with casting straight jigs. A small jig, 1/80 and smaller down to the half micro fished under a float can be very good. But conditions, and the mood of the fish right. Cloudy, low, or no flow, and just enough wind for a little riffle on the surface.

Just stick with it, and you will get the hang of it soon.

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Seth, have you had luck with any other sort of color worm? I ask because I just bought the natural color , almost reddish. https://www.amazon.com/Berkley-Gulp-Floating-Trout-Worm/dp/B00870WPK8?th=1. Your video at the dam, during high water is awesome! Something I will have to try. Must have been a good day. 

Thanks everyone for all of your information. I am sure ill bring a arsenal and only use a few things all week, but that is how it goes. I am going to force myself to jig all day one day. I lived in Steelville, Mo for 5 years and jigged rubber tail jigs at meramec springs. Went a few times a week. I learned how to jig, but primarily on sight alone. That is the part I feel like I will struggle with, is feeling the bite and bottom jigging. All I can do is practice and buy plenty of jigs. 

Thanks for your help and I look forward on watching/reading updates. 

Happy Friday! 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thats an expensive rod for throwing doughbait 😉  but, in all reality, you should be having fun.  No matter the presentation it's about you enjoying it. 

I'm no doctor, but a mentor is always best.  I have only been on Taney twice. At Jigfest, I caught fish on Jigs. Thanks to @JestersHK, and @duckydoty , and the Brandon, and the others who steered me from my mistakes.  

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You can’t kso go to You Tube and type in Zig Jig or Zig jigging for trout and you will find some good videos my customers have posted. I’m in some of them but did not post them. Then check out www.zigjig.com

You will find some more info about jig fishing there.

Good luck!

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3 hours ago, Jeff Polys said:

Seth, have you had luck with any other sort of color worm? I ask because I just bought the natural color , almost reddish. https://www.amazon.com/Berkley-Gulp-Floating-Trout-Worm/dp/B00870WPK8?th=1. Your video at the dam, during high water is awesome! Something I will have to try. Must have been a good day. 

Thanks everyone for all of your information. I am sure ill bring a arsenal and only use a few things all week, but that is how it goes. I am going to force myself to jig all day one day. I lived in Steelville, Mo for 5 years and jigged rubber tail jigs at meramec springs. Went a few times a week. I learned how to jig, but primarily on sight alone. That is the part I feel like I will struggle with, is feeling the bite and bottom jigging. All I can do is practice and buy plenty of jigs. 

Thanks for your help and I look forward on watching/reading updates. 

Happy Friday! 

I pretty well just use pink because it always works, but I have heard of others using red and orange with success down there as well. I've got orange for Maramec though. Those park fish love those orange trout worms.

Learning to slow down and fish deeper takes some practice. I grew up learning to fish jigs at Maramec just like you so it took some time to get adjusted. Unless fish are midgning, you will typically want to keep your jig down near the bottom at Taneycomo. When they are midging, you can chase down the midgers and fish just like you do at Maramec and catch them.

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