Neil Taylor, Strike Three Kayak Fishing

Hooks and Jigheads:  Everyday tackle that is more important than most people think.    I inspect my clients’ gear.  One of the biggest deficiencies:  Cheap jigheads.    It is worth the investment to have better moving lures by spending more to use a quality jighead.  Three to a pack for four bucks?   One pack goes a long way (unless you are really bad at tying knots).   Want to catch more fish?  Use a better jighead.  Better lure performance always translates to better results.

The jighead is your weight.    The total picture:  How does it swim with your plastic tail attached.  I use 12 Fathom Lures.    I will use the regular jighead for all the choices.   The Edje for weedless rigging of the SlamR and the Buzz Tail Shad.   You can order them direct with free shipping on orders over $75.    With a few 100 count bags that will get you to free shipping.  





Treble hooks versus conventional jigheads.   Safety supplies:  Industrial wire cutters.   , zinc oxide, Hydrogen Peroxide and Neosporin for preventing infections.   Protective eyewear, particularly for night fishing.   Treble hooks create new dangers.   Personally, I like barbless treble hooks.    Hooks with barbs I use my pliers to make them barbless.  Anyone who has had a hook in their hand can tell you the advantages of barbless hooks.   With a conventional jighead you are dealing with just one hook.  With that, I am fine with leaving the barb.    Barbless also easier for removing from fish, it also makes it easier if you get the hook caught in your shirt or pants.

Regular hooks

For live bait choices I would propose the following:   Mosquito hook- the “in between” solution.    Be a tight liner:  Efficient feeders means, when you feel that strike set that hook.   The mosquito hook splits the difference between a conventional J-hook and a circle hook.

Reef species: Requirements for live bait fishing.    You must use circle hooks when targeting reef species with natural baits.   It is the law.  

I’m all lures all the time so regular hooks are not something that I use that often.

My choice:   The Owner Mosquito Hook.  For whatever species, go with a size 2.  You may have another size you prefer but the size 2

will get the job done for most of what we do around here. 

A cheap straightforward J-Hook:  The Mustad 3407.





I know a lot about jigheads.  For years I used to make my own.  So much easier to juist buy them, I got rid of all my molds and never really looked back.   If you want to make your own I suggest locating a “Sparkie” mold. 

Like everything else in the fishing world, there are choices.   I will narrow it down for what I would use.   Many styles for different uses, you may like another style for what you do.   A majority of what I do a “football” shaped jighead is king.    Keep it simple.  Get these three jigheads:





#1:  The Mission Fishin’ 1/8 ounce.    The best all-around jighead for what I do.   This is your redfish jighead.   Any tail will perform well with this jighead.  It casts well.  It swims well.

#2 The Joe Jig, by Captain Joe’s Fish On Lures, this is another quality choice.  The jighead for the Captain Mel Classic it is available in any weight you would require.  My choice?  The 3/16-ounce.  See them HERE

#3    A decision on a weedless jighead.   I am going to go with The Edje.   Also a Captain Joe product, this is a great tool for targeting fish in very shallow water with thick grass.   You want to use this one with grooved body baits.   See them HERE

This is your jighead for a swimbait.  The Mission Fishin’ weedless:

Neil Taylor

Kayak Fishing Specialist- Strike Three Kayak Fishing


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