Kayak Fishing How to: Vertical Jigging for Tuna
Vertical jigging in a kayak can be an exhausting technique. Jigging even for 30 minutes can leave you feeling like you want to chop your arm off and go to bed. I try to use the lightest rod and reel I can get away with without losing to much drag and power. Pairing that light setup with a technique that alleviates pressure on you shoulder and arm will set you up to have a long and hopefully successful day on the water kayak fishing.
I use a Shimano Trevala 30-80 pound jigging rod paired with a Quantum Cabo 50 spinning reel. The reel is spooled with 30 pound braid and a 40lb Yozuri fluorocarbon leader attached via uni to uni knot. A 3-5 ounce speed jig caps off the set up. I prefer using the speed jigs, as they are slender and cut through the water quickly giving you less resistance to work the jig to the surface. Jig fishing is all about getting a fish to react to the jig. In the case of a fast moving tuna, a quick moving jig gets the job done.
When specifically targeting tuna, your target depth of water is 200-320 off Delray Beach Florida. When you reach your target depth see what the current is doing. If it is 1-2 mph try using a 3 ounce jig, if faster bump up to a 5 oz. You want the jig as vertical as possible when retrieving it. If the current is over 2mph throwing the jig ahead of your drift is a good idea so that when it reaches that drop zone of around 150ft down it will be directly under your kayak.
When you start your retrieve try to find a place to plant your foot on your kayak. Your thigh is going to become your base to rest your elbow when jigging. Using this technique will take most all pressure off you shoulder and reduce fatigue. From here it’s just setting up a rhythm of reeling and bouncing your rod tip. Again I like to work the jig fast, if that doesn’t seem to be working slow it up with different retrieves. Check out the video below to see me using this method on the water.
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