15 Minutes With Captain Ross Gallagher
What we learned….
Location: Offshore Gulf Of Mexico
Current: Depending on wind and moon phases, offshore current can vary dramatically. Jig weights may need to be adjusted to reach bottom.
Approach: Vertical jigging for grouper can be used at any depth. It’s a highly efficient and effective technique for quickly covering ground and locating fish. Especially when drift fishing is utilized. Specialized jigging rods and reels offer very high drags and lightweight design that helps eliminate fatigue, common with heavier traditional tackle.
Bait Selection: Hogy Harness Jigs
Why this bait? The unique heavy duty design and shape of the Hogy Harness Jig is ideal for deep water grouper jigging. With weights available up to 6oz, it’s easy to reach and effectively jig depths over 200′. The harness system supports a 6X VMC Live Bait Hook capable of landing very large fish, which often haunt extreme depths. The harness jig supports the use our replaceable HDUV Eel Tails and HDUV Paddles Tails.
Colors: HDUV Black Pearl is a personal favorite for deep water jigging. A close second is the Tinker Mackerel pattern. Both work very well for all grouper species.
Retrieve: Opposed to “speed jigging” techniques, the Hogy Harness Jigs can be used a more relaxed pace. Once the jig has hit bottom, a steady jig and drop technique moving the bait 2′ – 4′ off the bottom can be very productive. While drift fishing, a light jigging action should be used while consistently hitting bottom as you move along. When fishing on anchor, the harness jig can be casted a fair distance and retrieved in a hopping fashion once it has reached to bottom.
Rod: Sewell Custom 350 Gram Jig Spin
Reel: Shimano Saragosa 10k
Line: 65lb Power Pro Braid
Leader: 80lb Fluorocarbon