Jug Fishing

Ever thought about jug fishing? Not sure what’s involved, or how to get started? If so, then this is for you. I want to take the time today to tell you just what jug fishing is, some of the methods of jug fishing, and how to rig up to go jugging. So let’s get started.

What is Jug Fishing?

Jug fishing is method of fishing geared toward folks that really want to catch a lot of fish. The typical jug fisherman will set many jugs, and therefore has many hooks and baits in the water at one time. When we go jug fishing, we typical set about 24 jug lines in the water. This means we have 24 pieces of bait and hooks in the water to catch fish.

A jug line is simply a large float with a piece of fishing line or twine attached to it with a hook (and potentially other gear) that runs below it. When a fish hits the bait and gets hooked, the float will bob or bounce, indicating that there is a fish on the line.

Most of the time, when fisherman use this style of fishing, they are going catfish jug fishing. Catfish is what they’re after, and if they do it right, they’ll get just what they came for.

Jug Fishing Methods

There are two basics methods to fishing with jugs. The first is my preferred method, which is the anchored (or secured) jug line. In this scenario, the jug is fixed to a position in the water, either by being tied off to a stump, branch or other fixed object in the water, or by including a large, 1 to 2 pound or greater weight to the bottom of the rig.

The second is called “free floating jugs”. This method is used for folks wanted to do some drift fishing, to wit they will forgo tying off to any fixed object, and will not use any large weights, but will simply attach a line and hook rig to a jug, set the jug somewhere out in the middle of the water, and let the current take it, thus canvasing an area to find fish.

These two methods do a good job of keeping currents, wind, and fish from moving the jugs very far from their original location. This will help you to keep your sanity when fishing a lot of jugs…

Within the two basic methods of jug fishing, you also have some variations. For example, we like to fish my jugs shallow most of the time. We will secure a jug to a stump, and only run about 3 feet of line underneath it with my bait. You may think this is crazy, but we will typically average somewhere between 20 and 50 pounds of catfish each day when fishing 24 jugs. And the added advantage to this method is that the fish will still have a good supply of oxygen, and will be fresh when you come by to pull them off the hook.

Probably the more popular jug fishing method is running your lines deep. Many juggers like to place their catfish bait right on the bottom. This does work well, but the disadvantage is that there is a lot of line, and thus a lot of room for the fish to play and possible get off the hook, as well as a lower supply of oxygen, which will often kill the fish if you aren’t on top of checking your jug lines every couple of hours.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’ post, where I go into how to rig up for jug fishing

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