Slow Pitch Jigging
Slow Pitch Jigging
What's it all about?
Asian countries like Japan and Malaysia have been slow pitching for quite some time.
They have perfected it over the years and now it is here in Australia. It is different to jigging that we all know and enjoy.
Welcome to the lazy man’s jigging. No need for big winds up from 40m -120m from the bottom over and over again. It is all about "Zen" balanced lighter rod and reels that do all the work you just needing rhythm. Even hooking the fish they fight less aggressively with a leisurely retrieve.
Basic Techniques (not in English but has subtitles)
Show Techniques (not in English but has subtitles)
Theory behind slow Pitching
It's all about presentation of your jig mimicking that of a wounded bait fish. You really only work the water column in the strike zone unlike jigging where you have to work all the way to the surface. That's a real workout from depth. Slow Pitch is about technique of getting a rhythm of the rod and reel in touch with the lure at all times producing that uplift and flutter on the way back down, creating that irresistible urge for the predator to strike the wounded bait.
How do I get started?
The Japanese take their fishing seriously and quality as well. So a good outfit can set you back $500 - $2500 just for the rod and reel alone.
But we all must learn to crawl before we walk so there are some options to start out with.
The rod: is usually in the 1.9m -2.4m range with reel seat allowing plenty of blank and a butt piece to tuck up under your arm pit. This allows a cupping grip on your rod and reel with less dominate hand. Then rhythmically winding and lifting and dropping the rod to bounce the jig in the water to gets the flop flutter happening. This is achieved by a very sensitive rod tip probably about the top 1/4 - 1/2 of the rod tip. Baitcasting rods you are looking for the rod to have rotating guides in the top half of the rod. No the rod builder wasn't blind. This converts the baitcast seat to a spinning tip allowing for your braid to never touch the blank. You may need two rods depending on the depths you fish, one for lighter lures and the other for heavier rigs. Slow Pitch rods do not like rod holders, the blank is fully exposed and will get worn on the rim of the holder which will weaken the rod and graphite will shatter. Remember these rods load up from tip to butt so look after them.
The reel: You can use both spinning and Baitcasting reels. What you are really looking for is a low profile reel, getting that line as close to the blank as possible. A very smooth winding action with as close to a meter retrieves in one revolution. That way you know where your jig is in relation to the bottom or the bait ball. A large cranking handle so you can quickly crank 1/4 & 1/2 or full turns easily. You can always fit a genuine or aftermarket crank handle.
The Lure: Choice will depend on tides and water quality as always. but generally lighter weights <150g in the shallows up to 30-50M then bigger the deeper you get. You always want the jig to be under the boat to get the full action of the lure. Always mix them up colours and weights as different weights behave differently with water pressure and may entice a bite. Some lures have a basic shape while others are inspired by surfboard design hydroscopic pressure flutes and bevels to help get that flop flutter action as it soars through the water. The Lure usually comes with no hooks.
The hooks: The assist hooks you can buy just make sure that the hooks cannot meet in the middle of the lure when they have been applied to the lure with solid and split rings. The assist hooks will flap like wings in the water as you work the jig in the water column. So a quality pair of split ring pliers will be needed to rig and de-rig the lure. Or save some money and build your own assist hooks when waiting for the weather to be more favourable.
How to tie assist hooks for your slow pitch Jigs
So I'm looking forward to getting some hook-ups using this new technique on the next trip out on the reef. I'll add a few pictures of the successful results.