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Jiggin Pole ?

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This one may have been covered, I did a search but didn't find anything, so please excuse me if this has already come up.

I have starting thinking about my family's annual trip to Keuka, and wanted to give jigging lakers a more serious try this year. We always end up renting a pontoon boat (cause my brother and wife get sea sick if they look at water, but don't on a pontoon), and my dad just likes dead sticking sawbellies and having a beer. I enjoy that but I like to be a little more of an active fisherman, so I have started to try jigging. In the past few years I have caught one or two, just fooling around, but I think my biggest issue is the rods we have. They are lighter weight so that they have a little give if a fish takes a live bait so we can react and give them some line to eat it. This does not seem to be ideal for jigging, especially some of the heavier jigs that I would like to use to get to the bottom better.

So what length/action/brand/type of rod would work best? I have reels of all manner and size that should fit almost any rod (well at least close enough for now).

Also how heavy do you go with the jigs? I have heard mention of up to 2 1/2 oz, but being a PA trout guy that feels really damn heavy compared to my usual 1/32 oz rooster tails!! I have been using 3/4 and 1 oz jigs the past couple years, but again I think mainly because they felt better on the light rods.

Thanks for any and all input. Love this site even though I am usually just a lurker!!

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you definitely want a stiff/heavy action rod, but one that is also sensitive (not a ugly stick!). i prefer a 7' rod but 6- 6 1/2 will also work. the brand is not that important as long as it's lighweight, stiff and sensitive. i got mine at gander mtn for about $60 and i've caught 100s of lakers on it

equally - probably even more - important is non-stretch line, such as braid.

in 100 fow, 1 oz jig is fine. i use 1 1/2 oz if fishing 130 fow or more. good luck!!!


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For a Jiggin rod I like a rod that is at least 7-1/2 to 8 ft and most of the time I use a 9 ft rod I made myself. I like a lighter action rod than most, ML or M. My feeling is that if you get a big fish to the surface on braided line and he make a surge to the bottom, which Lakers often due, it is crucial to have that little bit of a softer tip. Also if you get into a pod of Salmon that are just short striking your lure the light action rod will show the lightest of bites. Also if you do hook into a fair amount of silver fish the lighter rod will make a big difference on weather or not you tear the hooks out with the fish goes ape sh*@! at the boat. My favorite blank for this is a 9' ML St. Croix Salmon Steelhead blank. The 8' M Browning Six River rods make good Jiggin rods the components aren't the greatest but the price is right. Another good rod is the BPS 8'-6" ML walleye deadstick rod. I think the fight is much more enjoyable on a lighter rod too.

Just my two cents,

Hope it helps

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On Keuka you only need 3 things to make jigging work.

1. Be on the water at sunrise

2. Be able to mark fish on the Sonar

3. Get your jig to the fish using the marked depth

If you don't have a way to mark fish, 100 FOW will work for most of Keuka. Seeing who is catching fishing and tag along, just not too close...

I know many people have favorites, but for us the rod/reel setup is really not that important when jigging, we do great with our medium action trolling rigs and with light weight spinning tackle ( which makes it a blast when you get something over 5 lbs). Having 10-20' of 10lb fluorocarbon and a small snap swivel on the end seems to improve the numbers.

We went over to Seneca Bait last year a got a bunch of Luhr Jensen jigs that work!

Almost anything that looks like bait will put fish ( Lakers) in the box.


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I typically use a 7' meduim action rod with 10 lbs. test. Make sure to use clear line. One year I had some green line laying around and tried it. Big mistake. Once I changed back to clear the fish were bitting.

I used to troll a fair amount on Keuka, but with the price of fuel I tried jigging and never went back. I make a few trips a year to the lake from PA and have success, no matter if it spring or the dead of summer.

The spring time I stay up near Branchport and in the summer I fish down around the bluff in about 100' FOW.

Good Luck!

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm also looking to try jigging for lakers for the first time on Keuka. After reading this thread i now know what kind of rod and line to use, can anybody give me a little more info on what type of jig/lure to use, and more on the presentation of it? Actually, any information on jigging would be helpful and appreciated :) Thanks in advance to all that reply!


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I use a medium light 6 1/2 foot graphite spinning rod with 15 Lb. braid and a 10-15 foot 10 pound test flourocarbon leader.

My buddies favor level wind gear, but I prefer the open face spinning outfit and they seldom outfish me.

I feel it is important to have a light enough rod to jig one handed without fatigue.

The rod should be stiff enough to give a good upward SNAP to the lure..Many fish hit the lure when it is fluttering down after the snap..

My bread and butter lure is a one ounce silver diamond jig with treble hook. The trebles complicate releasing fish, but give me a much better hookup ratio than singles.

You can buy the diamond jigs for less than $2 apiece at www.jigsrigsandstuff.com on Glen Avenue in Corning...

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When it comes to jigging on the Finger Lakes you can't beat the info/advise of John Gaulke .....IMO


I'll second that advice. His website is a very good resource, but you also might consider a guided trip to learn the technique and some good locations in your area. I've gone out with John and found it incredibly helpful and fun, too!

White 3-4" rubber baits with some type of an action tail (paddle tail or forked tail) on them make great jigging baits. Put them on a 1-1.5 ounce jig head and make sure you are making good contact with bottom.


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