Edwin Evers ranks a swim jig as one of the most versatile lures because it is weedless and mimics a wide range of forage. For some, it’s a shad imitator during the shad spawn, and for others, bluegill looking to snatch some eggs from a nest. Whatever your intent, Evers shares his favorite 3 methods for fishing a swim jig and when each one shines best.
TACKLE USED (retail links)
- JIG – Berkley PowerBait Swim Jig
- TRAILER – Berkley PowerBait Chigger Craw
- ROD – Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Platinum Signature Casting Rod, 7’1″ Medium
- REEL – Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Platinum Signature Casting Reel, 8.3:1
- LINE – Bass Pro Shops XPS Hyper Braid 8, 50-pound
As with any freestyle lure, there are no hard and fast rules; instead, there are generalized guidelines based on experience. Pay attention to all aspects of your cast and retrieve when you get a bite, and repeat what works. Bait nuance, such as your chosen swim jig trailer, weight, and color, can also impact success.
Evers’ top 3 favorite swim jig retrieves:
- Fast and erratic. Evers always starts his day shaking the swim jig, which makes the skirt flair and the trailer react. Fishing fast and erratic allows him to cover the most water and trigger the most active bass into biting. The fast and erratic technique shines during the post-spawn when bass are fry-guarding but try it any time of the year.
- Steady swimming. Like retrieving a swimbait or crankbait, a steady retrieve is always worth a try and tends to excel in cold water, during the prespawn, or when bass are hanging deeper.
- Sink and pump. More like a traditional retrieve, Evers often lets the jig sink to the bottom, followed by a pump that flushes the bait forward and up and allows it to drop back to the bottom. Use when bass are not responding to conventional retrieve.
And finally, Evers explains what he looks for in a suitable jig and his go-to rod setup. Use a swim jig with a heavier hook and brush guard, which can withstand the stress of hard hook sets in cover using a no-stretch braid. Additionally, pay attention to the line lie. Vertical line ties work best by helping “keel” the bait on the retrieve and are more streamlined when coming through cover.
Perhaps most important here is choosing a high-speed reel in the 8.3:1 range for rapid line pickup to get solid hooklets when using an erratic retrieve. Evers uses a quality 50-pound braid when fishing swig jigs and reduces his rod to a medium-heavy power to account for the no-stretch braid. If you like this content, be sure to check out Edwin Evers Fishing.