Everyone always wonders if they're biting (the walleyes that is) and if the answer is yes, the next question is "Are you riggin' or jiggin'"?
Riggin' is short for live-bait rigging (or Lindy Rigging), jiggin' is slang for jigging (using a lead-head jig and a minnow).
I prefer to rig when the water is between 60 and 80 degrees. I feel that jigging is more effective (a lot of times) when the water temperature is cooler than 60 degrees. Vertical jigging that is. Vertical jigging is a method that is great for walleyes that are hungry, but not so willing to chase all over to get a snack.
It's kind of like going to the restaurant right down the street (you get the job done, but it might not be the most awesome in the area). I guess another way of saying it might be the convenience of the meal.
Anyway, these two presentations are both very effective for fall walleyes. I love to jig, but the rig has been working well thus far. I prefer to rig with redtails and jig with rainbows (chubs). Are you following me? If not, call me and I'll explain. Both of these presentations have their advantages and disadvantages.
When I jig I like to use a stinger hook as insurance, but sometimes that darn stinger seems to act as a magnet to anything that may be around (carpet, nets, fingers, thumbs, coats, gloves, you name it). In fact I have only had a hook buried past the barb once (in my body) and it so happens that it was a stinger that did the damage.
But taking one for the team, I ripped it right out and kept my clients on the feeding school of fish. The thing that is so nice about fishing with a jig is that you can drill 'em right away, where as fishing with a rig you need to let them get that minnow in their mouth before you drill 'em. And sometimes (if they are really hungry) you can get a fair share of gut-hooked fish.
Fishing with a jig this doesn't happen very often. Which presentation catches more big fish? I will say the rig. I have caught my share of nice fish on jigs, but I think a big, fat redtail bags more big fish than a jig and a minnow.
I have fallen in love with Fireline for rigging, but when it comes to jigging I think I like monofilament (unless we happen to be fishing deep water).
Q: Do you miss the tiller steering now that you are using a wheel boat?
A: Only when the wind is crankin'! But for the amount of times that happens, I can "handle" it. I am very satisfied (and so is my back) with my wheel, in fact the new one is on the way.
Walleyedan (Dan Eigen) may be reached at www.walleyedan.com
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