Capt. Mike Hogan joins Capt. Shaun Ruge to cover step by step instructions for targeting Albies on small metal and Epoxy Jigs. This is the perfect step-by-step guide for anglers new to Albie fishing, or seasoned veterans looking for a few new techniques.
“We have encountered super finicky albies this morning,” Capt. Mike said as he cast his rod into the water. “There’s certainly plenty of them.”
He knows this because of the large amounts of bait in the area and the super greasy, calm conditions. Those two factors alone are why these fish can get finicky.
Firstly, he recommends using a very long and very light fluorocarbon leader, roughly five to six feet in length.
Secondly, Capt. Mike recommends using loops knots on ALL lures to give them their maximum action so that when they go through the water, they have a very natural presentation.
Thirdly, paying attention to your retrieves becomes key in landing false albies. There are three retrieval techniques that should be considered when targeting finicky albacore.
1. Skippy Retrieve: Reel “reel”-y fast on topwater so the baits are skipping across the surface
2. Slow Retrieve: reel slow through the school to create a wobble-like presentation and slowly work you way through the school your targeting
3. Tip Down Twitch Retrieve: Sink your baits under the school and with the tip in the water, burning it super-fast through the school.
The further the lure is out, the higher the tip should be. In return, the closer the lure is to the boat, the lower the tip should be until it is in the water. If the lure starts leaping, either slow down or lower your tip.
Speaking of lures, Capt. Mike recommends using the Hogy Mini Heavy Minnow (.75oz, Olive) or the Hogy Epoxy Jig Lure (5/8oz., Shrimp)
Fourthly, don’t forget to blind cast! You never know what’s lurking under the water, even if you’re not seeing fish chasing balled up bait.
And fifthly, approach the school slowly. The more you run and gun between schools, the more finicky the albie will become. Seventy-five percent of the time, there is no need to run and gun on schools of albie. They are constantly circling back to the same bait balls.