Crappie Swim Jigs
July 22, 2012
Mary Savage just told Dave Genz, "Mine's bigger." He's formulating a response.
Well, yeah. Different species. C'mon, Mary. She wanted to try something different and rigged up a pearl, 2-inch Bobby Garland Hyper Tail gub on a 1/32- ounce Lunker City Fin-S-Head. The Fin-S jig has the best collar for securing a plastic bait and keeping it viable for the longest period of time. She began swimming it through the cabbage beds, directing it around the tall corn with a 7-foot St. Croix Avid ultralight rod. Crappies were up and aggressive.
Mary caught some slabs. Dave and I couldn't stop She corralled several big bluegills with the grub, too — but it was soon obvious which species was dominating the weed tops. Crappies and largemouths were more likely to be up high, based on what Mary was doing.
A light, little Shimano Symetre reel filled with 4-pound braided line makes swimming small grubs, tubes, and crappie swim jigs a blast. We tie in three or four feet of 5.8--pound Raven fluorocarbon leader using back-to-back uni knots. The Avid can bring big fish with delicate mouths through timber and tall weeds with a light, braided line.
A lot of companies make 2-inch plastics that excel at triggering crappies. We use Kalin's and Yamamoto grubs a lot, along with 2-inch Gulp and Berkley Power Bait swimbaits and Southern Pro Crappie Stingers. Little shad bodies, 2-inch soft jerks, grubs with paddle tails, mousie-shapes — all kinds of plastics work for this. But Mary likes a grub. She has confidence in it and that makes her pretty darn good with it.
Grubs on jigs. Works for everything. Smallmouths and largemouths, crappies and bluegills, pike and muskies, steelhead and lake trout.
If you know how to present a jig on a grub, you'll never go hungry in the wild. When the boys get on the radio way up north and sing the collective "we can't catch a lunch fish" blues, out come the jigs and grubs. I'm not going hungry up there.
We let the big crappies go, but took plenty of images for future In-Fisherman magazine pieces.bUsing a controlled swim for crappies, showing all the current plastic options, is probably something we'll cover in detail (again) before long.