Jigging for pompano in passes/bridge in Central West

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Jigging for pompano in passes/bridge in Central West

Post by tears143 »

As you guy know, I have devoted one year to learn how to jig for these guys in Central West... mostly at skyway. Cost me a good amount of money on the jigs and a lot of time. Here's what I found...

6' light weight rod pair with a 2-3k reel. 10-20lbs bright color braid. leader 20-40lbs. jigging gloves
Remember you are fishing structure, they might pull you in and you never know what'll you hook with those jigs. (Cobia, Permit, big Jacks, Tarpoons... etc)

Ball jigs, bananas jigs + teaser (doc goofy or silly willy)

Doesn't really matter much... I caught them with no color before because the paint chipped off. But the hot color are... yellow, white, pink, and green.

Best time?
Morning hours, sunrise till about 11-12pm. Usually this will be your best bet but you never know. The only season that I don't catch pompano at the bridges and passes are in the winter. I guess this is the time they migrate down the coast in search of warmer water. So you can catch them almost year round. You also have another good chance in the evening hours before sunset. They seems to bite best morning hours and then second best evening hours before sunset.

Incoming/Outgoing? I don't think it matter, best to have some moving tide, not too strong and not too weak. Don't get me wrong but I have caught them in all sort of tide but best are moving tide... not too hard and not too weak. Some places might be better for incoming and other places are better for outgoing. A lot of people like to fish South Skyway Fishing Pier near the troll booth on the incoming and the small bridge before that on the outgoing. To me, it depends on the speed of the tide, if the tide is too strong incoming, I can't fish the small bridge and have to move to the main one. Usually and hour before slack time when I get the most bite and that's usually when the flow is perfect for me as well...

This week and the past week it has slowed down for the pompano but you can still catch them. They were on fire from a month ago to about two weeks ago. There are burst of these runs but you can catch them from spring time to all the way to winter. Then they shut down for a few months.

The jigs have to touch the bottom before you jig it up. I know there are quick a few people that got lucky and caught a good amount of pompano when their jig never hit the bottom. You can press your luck if you want but if you want to increase your chance of getting a bite, the jig must hit the bottom and then you jig it up. You can do a fast motion or just a light lift if you want. Both works. If you down the jig down and it drift under you... you'll have to cast it out and pick up the slack then jig it and repeat. If you drop the jig and it moves away from you, then let it stink to the bottom and then jig it. Let out line as needed so it does not interfere with the jig swimming freely. Continue until you think it's too far away. All bridges have different flow speed and different section of the bridges have different flow. Match the weight of your jig to the flow. If you are snagging too much, your weight is too heavy and if you are always in mid or top column jigging, your weight is too light. If it's too light and you don't have any other jig, either try closer to shore where the flow is slower or find some eddy where the water flow slower like behind a pilling. If you fish a bridge as often enough you know where all the snag are really fast.

I haven't fish enough with adding a piece of shrimp to the jig helps or not but I think it doesn't hurt. Since, the pompano feed also by smell.

Since you guys read all the way here, here's an added secret... majority of the catch are in the morning and evening as I pointed out before but remember you can catch them all day. Morning and evening seems to be big school moving through but any other time there will be a pair of pompano moving through the bridges from time to time. Think of the bridge as a major highway that fish use to move from one place to another. That's why you'll catch all sort of random fish. The longer you fish a bridge the more you understand it and know what time the fish will be there and such. If your hand is not aching from the jigging then you haven't jig enough yet. :-p

Catch them up guys.

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Re: Jigging for pompano in passes/bridge in Central West

Post by BoatlessFisherman »

Great post Thanks :toast:
-Tommy A-

click, click, click, Fish ON - Over, Under, Over, Under Get out of my Way. Sound familiar.

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Re: Jigging for pompano in passes/bridge in Central West

Post by Leadslinger »

Hey man, I really enjoy your reports from SSP, they always make me wanna make the drive over again and fish it for real this time.

Thank you for sharing the insight :toast:

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Re: Jigging for pompano in passes/bridge in Central West

Post by shos260288 »

Nice post. I always enjoy your reports from the other side of the state.
Fish Crazy

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Re: Jigging for pompano in passes/bridge in Central West

Post by fishboy »

Very informative, thanks!

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Re: Jigging for pompano in passes/bridge in Central West

Post by lkatze2 »

great write up, I have seen your results on your posts and you definitely know what you are doing. It looks like you really have a great system.

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