Block Island Striper Jigging - Slappy Jigging Eels
Capt. Jamie Simmons of Buzzard's Bay Outfitters and Capt. Jimmy Pragana of Epic Offshore head out with the Salty Cape Crew to target monster mid-August nighttime stripers with the "slappy technique," which is a slow, vertical jig along the bottom of the water column where these 35lb.+ class fish can often be found.
The crew is using super light tackle rods and reels, which adds to the fun of targeting these 35 to 50lb fish. When the tide is a little slower, they’re going to be using lighter weights but as the change in tide picks up, they’ll likely bump up to heavier ways to stay in contact with the bottom.
Tip 1: Use lightweight jig heads around slack tide. Increase the jig heads weight as the tide or the current builds.
“The Hogy Barbarian jig heads are perfect for these soft baits,” Capt. Jamie Simmons said. “If you’re not going to use a quality hook here, there’s a very good chance you’re going to straighten out your hook with some of these fish.”
The Barbarian Jig Head is known to be durable, strong and reliable, especially when fishing with light tackle.
Looking for the perfect depth and structure combination, the guys cruise around waiting for the tide to turn.
Tip 2: Drop the Slappy jig all the way to the bottom. Keep the bait in contact with structure.
Once they find the right structure and schools they are looking for, they drop the lure straight down to the bottom and begin vertical jigging.
Tip 3: Use short, sharp rod twitches to impart a dancing action in the bait.
By lifting it up two or three feet, the baits are still within view of the fish in the area, which usually strike on the drop.
Tip 4: Fish generally bite on the drop. Be prepared for hook-sets on any small taps you might feel.
With a fish on, Capt. Jimmy Pragana angles it towards the boat. Scooping it into the net, he removes the soft plastic Slappy Eel and releases it into the darkness.