FlatsFisher.com banner flats fishing information
Search r_gearshop
Article Archive

Back to current article

June 2002
Silver Spoons
August 2002
Starting Flats Fishing
September 2002
Beginning Gear - pt. 1
October 2002
Beginning Gear - pt. 2
November 2002
The Courteous Angler
Dec 2002/Jan 2003
Reflections at the
Tide Change
February 2003
Jerkbaits, another look
March 2003
How important is presentation?
April 2003
When to fish...?
May 2003
New ideas
September 2003
Flats Fishing 101 (recap)
December 2003
Another flats fishing year ends
Jan - Feb 2004
New year, new opportunities
March 2004
Flats fishing on any budget
August 2004
Special Request - Hurricane Report
Jerkbaits, another look
Feb 2003

Fad or Fact?
I have had to rethink my opinion of jerkbaits. If you have been reading along for the past months you know what I think about the 'go to' lure. The silver spoon is still effective. There was a time though that I tried the jerkbait and decided there was no use for it. There is no doubt that a jig and grubtail are one of the most productive lures of all time. In think I recall that a jig was part of the survival kit for soldiers at some point. Using the jog on the flats will be reserved for another time.

Even though they are made of similar materials there is a big difference in the two baits. You know the jig is versatile as it can be fished vertical in extreme depths or bounced above the grass in shallow water. The jerk bait offers similar versatility. Bass anglers have been rigging soft baits for years with a variety of methods. The jerkbait on the flats has many options for rigging and fishing.

One major difference in the jig and the jerkbait is the weight. You can have jigs of different weights but you have a weight. Jerkbaits can be fished weightless. This can be a great strategy for spooky fish. With the advances in line technology it is possible to fish at greater distances with a light lure.

Fishing without a slug of weight also has an affect on the action an angler can impart to the jerkbait. Of the anglers I fish with and articles I have read there are differing ideas on what action is desirable. I have no answers but as most lures there are many ways to fish it and you will need to experiment. The jerkbait can be retrieved causing it to twitch and dart wildly. It can also be retrieved more deliberately, surging and sinking to mimic an injured baitfish. I have caught fish both ways but lean to the latter as a more lifelike action.

Yet another option for jerkbaits is rigging. They can be rigged on a weight jig head or simply a bass style worm hook. There are saltwater worm hooks available and for strength I suggest those. As mentioned you can just insert a hook and fish the bait. For added flexibility though you can insert weight directly into the jerkbait. You can use the bass angler trick of small nails. Bead chain is another option. I have used those after buying a plastic lure rigged with the bead chain eye. The bead chain may provide some rattle as well.

My preferred method is to visit the fly fishing department and get lead eyes. These insert neatly and securely into the head of the jerkbait and offer less to snag than the bead chain. These also come in a wide range of weights down to almost nothing. I mentioned the rattling effect of the bead eyes. While you are in the fly department you can pick up glass bead rattles that will insert into the body.

Which jerkbait?
That is an excellent question. Many anglers use the Mister Twister Exude. This is a scented jerkbait and has been a good producer. Other scented options include the Powerbaits and freshwater plastics that can be used. Storm has some interesting new offerings in their 'Wild Eye' series. Along with brand there is the decision on color. Popular colors are a clear or pearl with iridescent flecks. You may also want a dark color. I have had good luck using the white with a chartreuse tail. A green color may also be a good option.

Try a jerkbait and give it a chance. The second time around it was apparent that it is a bait that should be a part of the flats tackle box. The varieties of ways they can be fished allow them to adjust to the ever changing conditions on the flats particularly in the winter months.

If you have any questions on fishing the jerkbait pass them along and I will find the answers if possible. As well, if you have some tips, submit them for additions to the new
'Tips and Tricks' section of the site.

Let me know what you think.

Good Fishing,

Search | Home | Articles | Reports | Reviews | Photos | Resources | Species | Contacts | Gear Shop
Privacy Policy - [Copyright 2004 Webb Information Exchange]