The Jika Rig offers a different way of presenting soft plastics to bass, and one of our favorite baits for this rig is the tube.
Tube fishing is one of the best ways to catch smallmouth bass. In fact, if you ask Al Lindner, he’ll tell you a green pumpkin tube is his absolute go-to bait for smallmouth bass fishing on any lake in North America.
If you’re on a lake infested with invasive round gobies, tubes become even more effective. Captain Ben Wolfe, one of the top guides in Michigan, is a big fan of tubing for hefty bronzebacks — and he’s also a big proponent of the Jika Rig.Something you would typically use for Texas rigging worms. Attach a split ring to the eye of the hook and hang a finesse dropshot weight from it. For a better illustration, make sure to watch the video above.
One of the primary benefits of using a Jika Rig is sensitivity. It allows for a more direct connection between you and the bottom, which helps you feel bottom composition and transitions. Traditional tube riggings tend to dampen the overall sensitivity of the rig, making it more difficult to feel the bottom.
While we are talking about tubes right now, keep in mind that you can use this presentation with a variety of different soft plastic baits. Worms, creature baits, flukes, craws, and swimbaits can all be Zika Rigged to various effects.
It offers a different “look” than what the fish are used to seeing.
What are some good places to fish the Jika Rig? You can fish them in the same types of areas you might otherwise fish a dropshot rig or a standard tube. Look for transitions in bottom composition, whether it’s a hard-to-soft bottom transition, sand-to-weed transition, or even a dark-to-light color change on the bottom. All of these areas tend to attract bass.
The beauty of this rig is in its versatility. You can easily change out weights to adjust the depth of your fishing or your desired drop speed. It can be fished on a spinning rod or a baitcasting rod, depending on your personal preference.
Smallie photo via Rueben Browning