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"Since I was 6,  I've used live bait: Worms, minnows, leeches, crawlers, frogs and bugs.  I do agree from time to time meat may be the ticket for the day.  I've fished some lakes that those frisky walleyes only wanted a leech and nothing else.  Fishing for panfish, I have found that I can drill thousands annually without using any meat whatsoever.  I know this is a tough pill to swallow. I was one of those guys that had to make the stop to the bait shop."

   It took several outings with the guy who taught me how to tie T.H.E. Jig and getting outfished consistantly to make the change. It was like pulling teeth for sure, but there came that infamous day.

   I can remember we were ice fishing and he had 30 crappies to my 2.  I had seen this too many times to count and he was really giving me the KING business.  I'm King he was saying and it busted the camels back.  It was the last straw.  I you have another one of those.

   Well that was the day I found I could consistantly pound those fish right along-side him.  I found that no matter how tough the bite was I could catch those fish even when everyone around me was getting nothing or next to nothing.

   As I read these posts in this forum and others, I see guys struggle.  I want to take them by the hand and show them T.H.E. Jig, but they just think I'm selling jigs.  Most guys say a jig is a jig.  That is ignorance speaking.  They have never used T.H.E. Jig and have no idea how deadly they are or why they are so deadly.

   At there are many guys telling of their day on the water even with small children and how they pounded fish. No meat, no minnows, worms or crickets....nothing nada zilch!

   T.H.E. Jig is not the only tiny jig out there, Zig makes one just like it.  There are also some small plastics out there like Lil' Atoms, Maki's or Tournemet plastic baits.  These small baits really work well because they are small.  It's called finesse fishing, which not many guys really understand nor do the bait shops.  Go to a baitshop. Try to find a hair or feather jig smaller than a 32nd oz...Good Luck!  Stop struggling to find bait or keeping it alive.  The types of baits I use do not need air, just water with fish in it!

   Finesse fishing is the act of downsizing your baits and slowing down your presentation.  In the ice fishing videos, I am lowering my bait to where the fish are.  Then with the help of my electronics, I can see the bait and the fish I am pulling up.  As I pull my offering away, I am triggering the strike sense.  Thus it will take after my bait.  There is a point that the fish will stop.  We call that their ceiling.  So drag or lift that fish to it's ceiling and wait for the hit.  If you come to my site there is some extra explanations.  I believe I had posted some of that info here as well.

   While fishing, the fish are in different feeding modes.
Aggressive, neutral or negative. During an aggressive bite, you can catch fish on just about anything.  If it moves they will hit it.  Fish are not aggressive very often.  You'll find more often they are neutral.  Then there is the other end of the feed mood spectrum.  A negative bite is a bite where most guys go home skunked or catch just a fish or 2 compared to the fast action they had just the other day.

   During these neutral or negative days, we can still go out and stay busy catching fish, but we need to change up to match what they want.  Downsizing our presentations and slowing down is the key here on those negative days.  Artificials are great in the respect of you can control your bait size.  So when that water gets below 50 degrees and/or a front comes through and now you've got high pressure on the back side, you can still go out and have fun rearing on fish.

   I'm not just talking about my hair jig.  All fish go through these moods.  When I go for walleye openers and they just got done with the spawn and the water is low oxygen and cold, those eyes are on a slow or negative pattern.  At best maybe neutral, so to get them I'll use a sassy shad swim bait on a jig.  During this time I know to downsize to a 2.5" size body.  As the weeds grow and fill the water with oxygen those eyes pick up on aggression.  The females also get over being tired from the spawn. Then is the time I'll go to a 3 or 4" sassy shad.  I can also pick up on my retrieval speed.  Sure I have to go to a bigger jighead too to stay in the strike zone, but I'm getting bigger with my baits, and I'm working the water faster because they are more aggressive.


Author:  CrappieKeith  
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