Set Your Hook

Stream Trout Jigs

I know you all know that I live in Arizona. And, that my favorite type of fishing is in our put-and-take lakes. But, not everybody is into the “easy” ways of catching trout. If you’re feeling up to it (and can handle loosing some tackle to the rocks of a stream) then read on to find out about how to use a jig set up to catch stream trout!

Most trout in lakes will eat whatever you throw out to them, either on the bottom, trolling, or cast and reel. (Provided of course, they’re biting at all!) Stream trout, on the other hand, feed more selectively than many game fish.

Whatever big trout are feeding on, whether it is insect larvae or minnows, it’s important to use a presentation that looks and moves like the real thing. If you can, creep up to the stream, not letting your shadow fall on the water, and see if you can spot what the trout are after. If you can’t figure it out, (and who can read a trout’s mind!) then don’t be afraid to try different baits or techniques.

Most of the major diet items for a stream trout can be imitated by a jig.

Jig: type of fishing lure, it usually consists of a lead sinker with a hook molded into it. There is then some sort of body on the shank of the hook. The jig is very versatile and can be used in both salt water as well as fresh water. Many species are attracted to the lure which has made it popular amongst anglers for years.

The head of a jig can consist of many different shapes and colors along with different features. The most common is the round head, but others include fish head shaped, coned shaped, etc. These heads come in many different weights usually ranging from 1/64th of an ounce to over 1 ounce. They can also be found in a wide array of colors and patterns. The hooks also vary. These variances can be on the hook type, color, angle of the hook or the material of the hook. Some jig heads even offer a weed guard.

Tiny 1/64-ounce jigs tipped with plastic nymph imitate nymph-stage insects, while a larger 1/16-ounce jig with a 1-inch white curlytail grub imitates a larger pupae or small baitfish.

Nymph-stage insect: stage between larva and mature insect; given to young stages of insects which undergo a partial metamorphosis. The nymph is usually quite similar to the adult except that its wings are not fully developed. It normally feeds on the same kind of food as the adult.

Jigs can be worked slowly (bounced lightly across bottom) or swum through deeper waters of pools and runs. In summer, cast jigs along under-cut banks, around deeper wood, below cascades into plunge pools, and behind boulders in runs.

Since jigs are already weighted, they often don’t require additional weight to sink them to the bottom. Depending on the way the water moves, however, they can raise in the water column, so keep an eye on how the jig sits in the water.

Readers Weigh In:

  • What set-up do you like to use to fish for trout in streams?
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2 Responses to “Set Your Hook”

  • clint:

    I see no one has said anything about running a bobber with a worm on it and let it bounce down stream, this is one thing that works . if your stream has just got rain with in about 3 days . most of the time it works vary well. spiners will work well most of the time if fished right it all depends on the time of the year and what they are feeding on but flys all so work well as well . this should give you some thing to think about !
    GOOD LUCK ON CATCHING THE BIG ONE

  • Kim:

    Clint — Thanks for the great worm tip! I’ll be sure to give it a try.

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