Claire Corlett

Fish Food, Fish Tanks, and More
How To: Jigging Through Sand Eels for Striped Bass

How To: Jigging Through Sand Eels for Striped Bass

We’re on the back side of Cape Cod and around
the corner from Race Point. So with all these sand eels — there’s literally
millions of them here — when this happens, and the fish come up and feed on the sand
eels. It can be very difficult to hook a fish because
they’re just rolling through the schools basically with their mouth open. Fish everywhere, but they’re just not biting
because there’s too much bait. So my strategy is to get away from the bait,
and put this jig in the zone where we’re marking some fish at about 30 feet. Yeah, Mike that fish took it on the way down. Right underneath all of the sand eels. Not the biggest fish out here but it’s a good
start anyway. I’ve got a bunch of them from 20 to 40 feet
down. Shaun, we’re in what, about 100 feet of water
right here? 75. So I’m gonna let it down to the bottom. You’ll notice how I have the line in between
my fingers. Often times you’ll get a hit on the drop. It slows down substantially when you get a
hit, so I’m ready to convert a hit on the drop here. I’m on the bottom, I’ll give it a few jigs. I’m just gonna slowly work it like this until
I get closer to the surface. What I’m doing is effectively twitching this
jig 30 to 40 feet below the bait ball. Just making it look like maybe it’s a wounded
baitfish or wounded sand eel that has fallen down. I’m looking for those bigger fish that aren’t
keyed in on the masses. The fish on top drilling on those sand eels
are lazy and they just want to bucket feed right through the masses. As far as I’m concerned this is the best technique
to fish through these highly finicky situations. Decent fish. Not huge. It’s crazy how many sand eels are here. There’s fish working on the sand eels but
they’re really hard to catch because the sand eels are so thick in the water. I literally just had to tickle that bait and
I put it down about half way, in this case about 50 feet of water and just tickled that
jig, the metal jig, the sand eel jig and the fish just hopped right on.

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