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Fish: Cutbow Trout

Small Jigs Over Spinners Any Day For Big Trout

Post By: ND Transplant      Posted: 10/18/2021 5:52:18 PM     Points: 10104    
Over the summer my fishing evolved from using spinners and Rapalas to small jigs tipped with either a small plastic tube or small plastic nymph. Basically anything to mimic small crustaceans or other underwater bugs that trout love to eat. For me this method has proved to be the most consistent by far for not only catching a ton of trout in high-country alpine lakes or foothill reservoirs such as Gross with little to no vegetation but giants. If you are finding yourself skunked off of some of these lakes try a small jig, 1/8oz or 3/32 and see where it gets you. Here's some beasts I landed this past weekend at a local reservoir in Boulder County. Many fisherman I speak with who are friends have been skunked a lot here using spinners or Rapalas. Tight lines y'all!
 Reply by: spicyhombre      Posted: 10/18/2021 6:05:11 PM     Points: 6144    
Totally agree. Also, you canít beat the bite on a jig
 Reply by: ND Transplant      Posted: 10/18/2021 6:15:35 PM     Points: 10104    
@spicyhombre, right?! There is just something magical about swinging your rod up and feeling weight or even better watching your line move on a deep drop and then setting the hook.
 Reply by: malty falcon      Posted: 10/18/2021 8:33:30 PM     Points: 7898    
I agree on the jigs. As I get older, I find less attraction for just cast 'n' retrieve baits like spinners. I enjoy trying to entice the fishies with rod action, and jigs are perfect for this technique.
Way to go, Spikey!
 Reply by: Team CO.F.F.      Posted: 10/18/2021 10:08:52 PM     Points: 110    
Yesssir! Good post...I too have been having success with this technique this summer😀🎣
 Reply by: i2fly      Posted: 10/19/2021 7:46:32 AM     Points: 2084    
All the rage these days is flies on jig hooks. Look at peridigons with their over sized beads. Balanced flies on jig hooks, blow torch, sexy walts, crayfish patterns the list goes on and on. The point of using jigs is not lost on fly fisherman. We can bottom bounce or fish them suspended under a indo. Your right they catch big fish. I got this one last summer on balance minnow pattern. Fished suspended the waves and wind jig your offeringsÖ deadly effective.

 Reply by: ND Transplant      Posted: 10/19/2021 8:10:53 AM     Points: 10104    
@i2fly thanks for the product tip! I also flyfish with my son so we will check those out.
 Reply by: Trailerman      Posted: 10/19/2021 8:50:22 AM     Points: 88    
Canít beat the old hair jig 1/4 oz and down! Deadly effective rivers and lakes. Walleye and other panfish love them too!
 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/19/2021 12:13:38 PM     Points: 42    
I would be interested in trying those small trout jigs such as I have seen Tyler (Team COFF) use so effectively. However, when I have gone into Sportsman's and Cabelas, I can't find any, and the store people have never heard of them. You must get them on the internet. Could you provide some product names/ companies/ and websites where I could purchase them?
 Reply by: Troutbisquits      Posted: 10/19/2021 1:16:21 PM     Points: 857    
Nice! I know that reservoir. I have caught a 20" splake and a 24" cutbow out of there. My preference for that lake is actually tube jigs. You are right though it can be tough. Oddly enough there are some Walleye in there as well. The rangers want you to keep them as they are not supposed to be in there. Did you hike all the way back to inlet? I imagine browns will be moving soon, but still seems a bit early.
 Reply by: Anteroman      Posted: 10/19/2021 1:20:53 PM     Points: 6151    
Good info and I agree more each year.
Iím not a big fan of jigs but am a fan of bending the rod whether itís with chicken feathers or metal mullet. I2 and I spend a bunch of time together on the water and his research and tying abilities have opened many new windows for me, especially in this area.
About the only thing I disagree with is, the jig bite is the best, I personally believe nothing compares with a 20+ inch fish gobbling a size four or six dry fly off the surface to me this is magic.
Again, thatís why they make vanilla chocolate and a variety of other flavors in ice cream, make your selection and enjoy it!
 Reply by: ND Transplant      Posted: 10/19/2021 2:23:24 PM     Points: 10104    
@Troutbisquits ya I've heard that too about the walleyes, I'd keep them if I ever caught them there. The fillet mignon of freshwater fish in my humble opinion.

I did do the inlet the past few weekends. There's a shortcut you can take above the lake and makes the hike down instead of up. You're right, still to early for the Brown spawn. Water is still too low I think.
 Reply by: Piscifer      Posted: 10/19/2021 2:55:12 PM     Points: 36    
Nice, and I totally agree! Good to see some nice fish coming outta there. I haven't been back there much since the flood, and only caught little guys there a couple years ago. Food for thought for next season...
 Reply by: i2fly      Posted: 10/19/2021 8:10:42 PM     Points: 2084    
Fisheveryweek, try sites like, Fly fish food. High quality fly fishing web/store. Catch and the hatch, Allen Garner. Heís a local guy that sells flies. He also has webinars on flies and how toís. Big Y Flies, crazy good price point. Or find someone who will custom tie for you. Better yet get a vise and join the addiction. Jig flies and jig hooks dressed up are easy to do. Tons of videos for tutorials.

Oh and BTW not everyone at Sportmanís is clueless guys. Some of us can fish too. i2
 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/20/2021 12:04:47 PM     Points: 42    
Thanks. I will check those fly sites, but what I was really looking for are jigs closer up the 1/4 oz. mark that I could cast a significant distance out from shore with spinning gear. That's what Tyler uses. If I went with a fly and bubble, I couldn't get the jig down all the way to the bottom like I know Tyler does. But he does not need to cast so far, since he usually is out in his float tube. Since most of my lakes are hike-ins, I need to fish from shore. Also, there are many types of plastics to use with the jigs which you just can't find at the local stores - my local meaning Grand Junction. During ice fishing season they do put out at least some of the kind of jigs that would work. And I do have a vise and have tied flies, but that was many years ago, and I never actually fished those flies. I guess I will do some internet searching next.
 Reply by: ND Transplant      Posted: 10/20/2021 1:36:59 PM     Points: 10104    
@Fishneveryweek I am much the same as you and hiked up to Alpine lakes all summer long and was casting from shore. This rod is the best lightweight one I found on the market and at a great price. I use 4lb braid tipped with 4lb flouroleaders. It can cast a mile with a 1/4 oz jig but I found that timing my casts with the wind was plenty to get these 1/16 and 1/8 oz jigs out to deep holding fish.I honestly think they could make a 9' rod in three pieces and it would be even better. I am thinking of getting a custom made for next season it worked so well. I bought two of these 7'6" footers for when I take one of my kids or a friend. The friends are blown away about how well it works for getting light gear way out there.

For plastics have you ever checked out the "Berkley PowerNymphs"? Those are my jam. I get them ordered from Bass Proshops. They are like trout crack.
 Reply by: riper69      Posted: 10/20/2021 5:08:52 PM     Points: 1801    
Love the little 1/16oz jigs
I'll have on on my rod til text may
 Reply by: Piscifer      Posted: 10/20/2021 5:52:18 PM     Points: 36    
Hey Fishineveryweek, you may want to check out Thomas Custom Lures. Good stuff on there!
 Reply by: SurfaceIron      Posted: 10/21/2021 11:00:04 AM     Points: 366    
Peter's custom trout worms micro minnows.
If you're fishing under a bubble, I guess you could use a heavy jig head, but they work best with the jig head provided. 1/16 oz. #4 hook.
I can throw them about 50 feet on a 2500 reel with 6lb copolymer.
They catch everything and the xx hook won't straighten out on big fish.
 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/21/2021 12:41:55 PM     Points: 42    
ND: I, too, use a 7 1/2 ft. medium light spinning rod - a Cabelas Pro Guide (no longer available after Pro Bass buyout). I use 6 lb. flourocarbon with that and can cast like 100 feet with a 1/4 oz. weight on the end. But that gets cut in half with 1/8 oz. or less which can really leave me short of the real hot spots. Another problem is several of the lakes I go to have a lot of big boulders all over the bottom which results in an immediate snag up as soon as you hit the bottom. Bigger jigs like Diggins's favorite maraboo jigs are heavier and cast a long way, but I have yet to get bit on one, and they, too, are easy to loose on rocky bottoms. Maybe if I go to 4 lb. line, I can get more distance with the lighter jigs. Also, the plastic adds more weight to help the cause.(tipped with maybe a meal worm?). I think I will check into that on-line. I do agree with you that a nine foot spinning rod would probably cast real nice, but try and find anything longer than 7 1/2. I did once run into a jig master guy back in the woods over a decade ago. He was using really long casting rods and reels with braid and a fluoro leader. I also saw a woman one day fishing with about the same rig only with fly and a bubble. She hauled in a nice 17" cut and could "cast a mile" as well.
 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/21/2021 12:47:07 PM     Points: 42    
Piscifer: I will definitely look into those. They sound like something I have heard of a few times and always wanted to try.
 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/21/2021 12:50:36 PM     Points: 42    
Surface Iron: I will check into those, too. I think Tyler uses something similar. Thanks, you guys.
 Reply by: Crit      Posted: 10/21/2021 1:54:45 PM     Points: 3    
4 or even 6lb Nanofil for main line with flouro leader as mentioned above will get you more casting distance. Lots moreÖ

 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/22/2021 3:42:13 PM     Points: 42    
Is Nanofil a copolymer line?
 Reply by: Smelly      Posted: 10/22/2021 4:13:24 PM     Points: 26776    
Fisheveryweek.. Coploymer line uses 2 diffent types of nylon to make the line.. Itís still nylon line like mono. Nanofil is considered a braid . Itís kinda in its own class. Google calls it a mono/ braid hybrid. The stuff is super thin and silk . It can launch a lure into another time zone ! I used it for 5 seasons. My take ? Itís good line , but itís high maintenance line. First , better have a PHD in knot tying. The stuff is sooo slick it hard to get a good knot when tying a leader. Second, don't believe the claim that is still ok when the end starts fuzzing out. So you gotta always be checking your line and cutting it back as needed. And when you cut enough off. Time to respool, or you lose some distance. If you want to set up a reel just for casting small stuff itís fantastic. Iím getting lazy in my old age. I switched to fire line ultra 8. A little less casting distance. Whole lot less maintenance .
 Reply by: Santiago84      Posted: 10/22/2021 4:21:27 PM     Points: 5015    
Smelly is totally right. I use nano and can cast to the moon but God help me when my leader needs to be replaced. You really need a good knot to tie floro onto nano. The FG is the best I have found but I gotta watch a YouTube video every time I need to do it. Itís a pain in the ass in the middle of the lake on a float tube. Luckily it doesnít happen too often. The first time a trout hit a lure on nano it felt like a truck hit it. No give at all. I have come to love it.
 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/23/2021 4:06:12 PM     Points: 42    
Wow! That is really cool. I am for sure going to try some of those new lines. Some significant pros and cons to consider. I can relate to that issue of trying to tie together 2 dissimilar types of line. When I tie backing braid on my bait casting reels to the fluorocarbon that I am primarily putting on the reel, I really need to make a special effort, but I don't generally ever have to test the knot while fishing. Now it finally makes sense to me how folks can, indeed, use small trout jigs and still get good distant casts with an open bail spinning reel - excellent!
 Reply by: i2fly      Posted: 10/23/2021 4:24:42 PM     Points: 2084    
I googled all the knots. PIAÖ if your on the water well thatís not exactly easy. Any of you guys ever use tippet rings on the end of the braid? It makes a quick easy change out of the leader. 3mm is what I recommend that should accommodate a heavy leader. Clip it off and tie a improved clinch knot when ya changeÖ. trick is to thread it on the braid prior to removal from the snap swivel.

 Reply by: Smelly      Posted: 10/23/2021 5:12:38 PM     Points: 26776    
I donít want to hijack this thread . So last post on this. We can start a new post if there are any more ?s. Like I said I have 5 seasons experience with Nano. Enough to form an opinion on it . The one major downside to it , and why it starts to fuzz out . Really poor abrasion resistance . Guess thatís the trade off for casting distance. And one the reasons I call it a high maintenance line . Always check the last 5 Ď or so feet. I learned this lesson the hard way ( normal for me ) broke off a few decent trout , and one that shouldnít have broken me off. The bigger ones I wrote off to bad luck, when the small fish did it, I started inspecting my gear for problems.I2 , Iíve never heard of tippet rings. But Iím not a fly guy either . Still the tackle junkie in me would like to know more 🙂.

Hey guys. Iíve heard of some ď extreme ď bluegill anglers , having spinning handles put on Ul Fly Rod blanks ( like 8 Ď 3 wt ).In order to make long casts with tiny lures for gills. Anyone consider that?
 Reply by: ND Transplant      Posted: 10/24/2021 6:18:16 AM     Points: 10104    
I hate that line to line knot so this is my cheat. I just use tippet rings. For the braid to ring use a Palomar knot. The tippet can then be tied using a clinch or whatever knot you like usually.

PS.. what a great thread this has been!
 Reply by: Smelly      Posted: 10/24/2021 7:37:31 AM     Points: 26776    
Thatís kinda neat ND. They look like ď rig rings ď that Carp fishermen use to make speciality hair rigs with. Soooo many gadgets out there. Ainít fishing great!

My last post might be misleading . Should have thought it through a bit more. What these extreme bluegill guys are doing . Are getting spinning rods made out of fly rod blanks. They use them to throw micro spoons and those itsy bitsy jerkbaits and crankbaits in search of trophy gills. Bet those with a UL reel spooled with Nano would get those baits out there. I too use some small plastics. I also paint my own spinners. So I have that ď giving them something differentĒ advantage going for me. Seems they will take one ore the other. I still throw bigger lures as my first line of attack for big trout. They usually get the job done. Call me ď old schoolĒ or just .. OLD ! Either way. You would be correct ! 🙂
 Reply by: Fishneveryweek      Posted: 10/24/2021 1:31:44 PM     Points: 42    
Hey, you guys - I was thinking about that knot of Nanofil to fluorocarbon problem last night, and it donned on me that there is a perfect solution that I have already field tested a zillion times: I used to have a big problem tying together two dissimilar pound strength fluorocarbon lines (20 to 6 lb) - the connection reduced the strength of the line greatly and the 6 lb would cut into the 20 lb, so eventually it's snap and good buy fish. First I tried tying a loop knot with the 20 lb, but the 6 lb still cut through it. Then finally, I came up with the perfect solution - similar to the tippet ring, but I believe, even better: Use a really small barrel swivel and tie the lines to each loop on it. I use a supper small SPRO #8 barrel swivel that is no bigger than one of those tiny little ants that come into the house for food in the spring - about 1/8 inch long, but it has a 50 lb. test rating. 50 of them would fit into a thimble and it wouldn't even be half full! I just use square knots with both lines plus one extra tie - brain dead simple and easy and it doubles the strength of the connection with no extra weight to speak of. I get those SPRO swivels by ordering through Cabelas on-line. Hopefully that will still work after the Pro Bass buyout. I bet ya that would work just perfect for a Nanofil to fluoro connection. The swivel is so small that it is like it is not even there when you are fishing.
 Reply by: idlerick      Posted: 10/24/2021 10:28:33 PM     Points: 19    
My apologies for reverting back to the original topic, but for you fly guys - ever hear of a Clouser Deep Minnow?
[log in for link]
One of the easiest ties around, no esoteric materials or techniques, durable, infinitely variable in color, size, dressing, and super fast to tie. Bob Clouser, of Pennsylvania, invented it as a smallmouth fly years ago, and it's probably caught more saltwater and warmwater fish than most any other pattern. And it's also a great trout fly. Easy to cast, but fishes like a small jig.
Hint: Keep it sparse.
 Reply by: Troutbisquits      Posted: 10/25/2021 1:13:42 PM     Points: 857    
@idlerick, oh yeah. Clouser minnows are an easy tie and alot of fun to fish. I also fish a kreelex alot, which is essentially a flashier Clouser.
 Reply by: SirGreg88      Posted: 10/25/2021 2:41:54 PM     Points: 92    
Just ask Bharper!! That's his ticket also...ÖÖ.
 Reply by: Digginjiggin      Posted: 10/25/2021 5:21:45 PM     Points: 354    
 Reply by: nparker      Posted: 10/27/2021 9:03:14 AM     Points: 1090    
I caught a Bonefish on a Clouser last week in Mexico. You could even catch a cold with them.

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