Group: Super Administrators
Joined: Jan. 2004
||Posted: Oct. 29 2007,10:10
... About Technique:
I'd like to close my part in this series with a bit about technique. But first a few more related definitions:
Skittering: a jiggerpole technique using a 10 or 12 foot pole with an equal length of line. A frog or strip of perch belly on a single hook is "skittered" across openings in the lily pads. Performed to catch bass who attack aggressively. The original Florida technique in the late 1700's was to connect three single hooks, back to back (like our modern trebles), and covered with deer hair and/or feathers to create a fist sized tassel or tuft called a "bob". The "bob" was swung back and forth, just above the water, along the lilypad or weed line, with occasionally dabs or dips into the water. Again for bass hiding under the pads which would finally explode and attack the "bob".
The modern version of skittering still uses pork rind or fish belly, often with a Johnson Silver Minnow spoon (weedless) dangling from the tip on a short piece of line, and dragged around.
Doodlesocking: Unlike skittering, is always performed using a very short line of about 2 ft. This technique uses noisy surface lures, often with props. The idea is to swish the lure around in small circles or figure eights in any small openings, and making a real commotion. This is also done using a 3/0 hook using big minnows hooked through the mouth and out the side, and using a small sinker to get the bait under water. Same technique, and same result: smashing strikes by big bass.
Jiggerpoling Drift/Troll: In this technique the poler drifts or slow trolls a noisy topwater to work an edge. Uses a short (1 to 2 ft) line, the jiggerpole butt is held by say the right hand, rests on the left knee and extends to the left side. In this example the left hand will tap the pole causing the tip to flip water in front of the lure. This is intended to give the illusion of a small baitfish being chased by the topwater lure. Considered irresistable to big bass who interpret this as a feed going on.
A modern practitioner speaks:
|As Howell explains, "To jiggerpole fish, I've replaced the cane jiggerpole with a durable, 20-foot, fiberglass, telescoping pole, the Tuff-Lite, made by the B & M Company in West Point, Mississippi. This pole's strong enough to handle heavy bass, has a flexible-enough tip to flip water and is long enough to reach the bank from a boat." Howell ties 85-pound-test Dacron line behind the last joint of the pole at the butt end and wraps the line around the pole to within 2 inches of the tip, leaving 6 inches of line at the end of the pole. Using electrician's tape, he attaches the line to the pole in several places. Then Howell ties a #5 stainless-steel snap swivel to the end of the line. To the snap swivel, he fastens a Creek Chub jointed wooden lure. Howell has found that a wooden lure performs better and floats better than the plastic imitations do.|
Although old-timers who jiggerpole fished sat on the front of a wooden boat and sculled the boat down the bank with a paddle, Howell prefers a foot-controlled trolling motor to slowly move his craft down the shoreline. "I hold the jiggerpole in my left hand and balance the pole across my right knee," Howell instructed. "Then by very gently shaking the pole with my right hand, I can cause the tip of the pole to flip water. When a bass blows up on the lure, and only 6 inches of line are between the fish and the pole, the angler has all the excitement he can stand at close range."
"When a bass hits, I set the hook by pushing down hard on my jiggerpole to get the tip under the water," Howell commented. "At the same time, I push the pole down, I roll my hips forward and push the pole toward the front of the boat. As I start to sweep the pole around the front of the boat, I begin moving my hands down the pole toward the pole's middle. I keep steady pressure on the bass as I'm swinging and sweeping the pole around the front and toward the back of the boat on the opposite side of the boat from the bank. By the time I get the tip of the pole to the back or the middle of the boat, I have about two-thirds of the pole behind me. Then I carefully lift the bass over the side of the boat and lay the fish in the boat." One man can jiggerpole fish just like modern-day flipping to cover an entire shoreline. Too, Howell has successfully jiggerpole fished with a partner."
It is important to note that the pole is NEVER lifted (esp. with larger fish) but pulled in hand-over-hand. Howell (above) does this while keeping the tip underwater, and swinging the rod forward. This pulls the fish in while also moving it out away from the clutter.
In sum, this oughta give all of us some ideas about how to rig and use the modern jiggerpole. In its current form - a light and telescoping floating pole - this easily used device may be of real interest to kayakfishers who can easily approach areas conducive to jiggerpoling...
Further affiant sayeth naught.
Edited by Capn Jimbo on Oct. 29 2007,10:14
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