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Lure Selection Strategies – Pro’s Guide on How to Choose the Right Bass Fishing Jig

Learn how to choose the best bass jig for every situation and how to work your jig to catch the most bass.

Throughout bass history, jigs have enjoyed designation as a big fish bait. Recent years have seen an ever-growing diversity that has yielded a broad selection of bass fishing jigs – including jigs that range from the versatile to task-specific.

To help anglers dial in the right tool for the right job, the Lurenet Jig Manual removes the guesswork. This interactive bass lure selection chart factors in cover, water color and water temp and recommends specific bass fishing jigs.

Such well-studied direction will, no doubt, prove helpful in guiding anglers to the bait that’s built for a given scenario. However, a little dockside conversation can go a long way. Sometimes, it’s just good to hear what another angler ties on for scenarios similar to those of you might encounter.

To that end, we spoke with a couple of proven jig specialists — reigning Bassmaster Classic champion Jason Christie and Chad Warner, Director of Product Development for multiple brands, including BOOYAH, War Eagle and YUM. Both are well-versed in a variety of jig applications and, while they share several preferences, each has his own own style and specialties.

To keep this linear, we’ve broken down the major jig presentation styles. Here’s what Christie and Warner had to say.


Jason Christie in Bassmaster ClassicJason Christie in Bassmaster Classic
BASS photo


No surprise. Christie’s going with the 5/8-ounce War Eagle Jiu-Jigsu he used during his wins at the Bassmaster Classic and the Lake Chickamauga Elite. Paired with a YUM Craw Chunk, it’s a good all-around choice for docks, rocks, bushes and other shallow cover.

Christie noted that he’ll turn to the Jiu-Jigsu more in cleaner water — about 6 inches of visibility or better — than in dirty water because of the weight. As water dirties, the fish need more time to spot a bait, whereas, in greater clarity, that fast fall triggers them.

“With the quick fall, you don’t want to dink around on the cover; you want to go right to where you think that fish is,” Christie said. “On a bush that’s 5 feet in diameter, I won’t flip the perimeter; I want to put that bait as close to the fish as possible to make him react.”

Warner’s also a Jiu-Jigsu fan, but he’ll also flip a Booyah Boo Jig, as that 30-strand fiber weed guard allows it to effectively navigate wood, laydowns, stumps and root balls. Rigging his Boo Jig with a YUM Craw Chunk or Craw Papi (for colder water), Warner knows that weight is his friend.

“Go as heavy as possible for accuracy,” he said. “If you can keep it in that 1/2-ounce or heavier, it allows you to be more accurate with your flipping and pitching.”


War Eagle Jiu-Jigsu JigWar Eagle Jiu-Jigsu Jig

While Warner has spent plenty of time flipping the Jiu Jigsu, he’s also very comfortable pulling it across the bottom. From ledge rock to tiny pea gravel, to chunk rock, this jig has earned a year-round spot in his arsenal.

“The recessed line tie sits at a higher point, so it protects that knot and the line against abrasion when you’re dragging it,” Warner said. “If I’m dragging, I’m always going to use a YUM Craw Papi for the realistic look.

“If I’m dragging, it’s typically a slower movement and if that bass is going to look at it, I want them to have no hesitation on wanting to bite that thing.”

For his slow dragging work, Christie’s partial to a 3/4-ounce War Eagle Football Jig with a YUM Spine Craw. He likes this trailer because it doesn’t pack a lot of plastic, so it doesn’t impede the jig, but it wiggles enticingly with minimal water movement.

“I use this on the typical offshore stuff during summer and winter, when the fish are in 8-20 feet around anything from Kentucky Lake ledges to rock piles, to old brush,” Christie said. “This is what I’d call a good clean-up bait. I don’t like throwing it to find fish; I’ll throw it after they stop biting a crankbait and I’ll usually catch a couple more that way.”


Warner and Christie are all-in for the BOOYAH Mobster Swim Jig, as it’s perfectly designed to smoothly traverse rock, wood, vegetation or open water. As Warner points out, the Mobster’s versatility really shines in wood.

“The majority of weight is at bottom, away from the line tie,” he said. “When I pull that bait over a piece of wood, it forces the hook point to remain straight; it won’t let it fall over and snag that piece of wood.

“A lot of jigs are keeled, but are they keeled in the right direction? Is it pushed back toward the shank as far as you can get it? That way, when you hit something, it keeps that hook point up, instead of allowing it to roll over.”

Warner opts for a 2.75-inch YUM Craw Chunk 90 percent of the time, but in super clear water, he’ll go with a swimbait trailer. Typically, the 3.5-inch YUM Pulse or 3.5-inch YUM Scottsboro Swimbait does the trick.

“If you’re fishing target-specific stuff, whether that’s a point in the grass, a larger weed clump or a piece of cover like a stump or a laydown, make multiple casts from various angles,” Warner said. “A swim jig is either a ‘sight’ or a ‘feel’ presentation. If it’s sight, that’s why you’re hitting multiple angles, because that fish is going to bury up and use that piece of cover as an ambush point.

“If you’re making one cast to a piece of cover, then you’re not giving that piece of cover the most potential to be productive for you. I promise you, that will get you more bites as you’re swimming a jig.”

Christie offers this tactical tip for Mobster success: If he needs to slow down the bait or keep it higher in the water column, he’ll add a bigger trailer like a 3.25-inch Craw Chunk. A good example here is the shallow shad spawn. A spinnerbait’s a common choice here, but when shad and the bass that seek them are in skinny water, a smartly balanced swim jig effectively navigates the meager depths.


When it comes to sending a jig into the shadows beneath docks and overhanging limbs, Christie finds the Mobster’s head design facilitates this action. For a more traditional choice, he’ll go with the BOOYAH Bankroll Jig.

“I’ll rig that with a YUM Christie Critter for the action, but also the density of plastic,” Christie said. “When I’m hitting the water with my jig, that trailer stays on better — and it has good swimming action.”

Warner does his skipping with the BOOYAH Boo Jig and keeps his presentation as compact as possible. This starts with trimming the skirt to a moderate length and reducing his 2.5-inch YUM Craw Chunk.

Downsizing the bait’s overall profile minimizes water drag and allows Warner to achieve maximum skipping distance. Dropping down in line size to as light as 14-pound fluorocarbon helps put that jig in front of responsive fish.

Trailer Tips

YUM Craw ChunkYUM Craw Chunk

To help whittle down the many potential jig and trailer combinations, Jason Christie offers a few tips:  

Action: The warmer the water, the more active he wants his trailers. Subtle forms work best for lower temperatures. Heavy fishing pressure and higher water clarity also bring the subtle trailers to the forefront.

Examples include the YUM Craw Papi (subtle), YUM Craw Chunk (active) and YUM Spine Craw (midpoint).

Size: Here, Christie considers the type of jig and pairs it with the right size trailer.

“If I’m throwing a really bulky jig, I want that trailer to stick out past the jig. The YUM Christie Craw, for example, has really bowed legs on it so it gets those appendages out there where they actually catch water.

“By contrast, a YUM Spine Craw, which is very compact, behind a bulky jig is not going to catch a lot of water. There’s a lot of characteristics that come into not only picking the style of trailer, but the size and length.”

Trimming: A key part of jig trailer selection is the occasional need for modification. Often Christie will cut off an inch or so of a trailer’s body to create a compact jig profile for finicky fish. He’ll also do this during the spawn when fish are just biting off the trailer’s pinchers.

“For punching, I might bite off some of the appendages of the bigger trailers to make the bait go through the cover better,” Christie added.

Color Code: If Christie notices bright orange pincher tips on crawfish regurgitated in his livewell or if he spots bream with prominent chartreuse-tipped tails, he’ll accent his jig trailers with the appropriate dyes.