Jigging With Baitcaster: Is It Possible?

Jigging With Baitcaster

When you look at professional anglers, you will see that they have specialized equipment for every single fishing technique.

But for a recreational angler who is trying out different styles, is that really necessary and can you be successful with a bit more versatile approach to fishing?

Is it possible to do jigging with baitcaster? The answer is YES! You can use your baitcaster for jigging, assuming that you already know how to use such equipment. Reel with a flipping switch can come in handy here. This can be done in both saltwater and freshwater, and depending on your setup, you can land anything from regular size freshwater fish to sea monsters!

If you plan to do some vertical jigging, your baitcaster can be a great asset. Of course, same as everything else, using baitcasters for jigging has certain advantages and disadvantages..

Together with some tips and tricks, here I will mention everything you need to know!



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Can You Jig With a Baitcaster?

As already mentioned, yes, you can use baitcaster for jigging. But, as you know, baitcasters are a bit harder to use than spinning reels, and beginners often have certain problems before they get used to it. If you have never used this type of reel, I would advise to try out some other techniques before you decide to do jigging. I am saying this because controlling the reel, especially with one hand, requires some experience.

In addition to that, these reels are not very good for very light lures, so if you plan to use the smallest and lightest jigs you can find, I advise you not to pair those with baitcasters.

Not all baitcasters are the same, and for jigging, you should choose those that have a flipping switch. This is a feature that allows you to control the reel with one hand and that makes jigging a lot easier.

When this switch is used, anglers can engage their reel by removing your thumb off the release button. There is no need to turn the reel for spool to be engaged, and this allows you to operate with one hand only.

This is useful in jigging because you can release it when your lure is at a desired place and the spool will stop and keep the lure where it is.

And lastly, choose models with a good thumbar release as you will use it constantly.

Jigging With Baitcaster - Can You

Can You Use Baitcaster for Vertical and Slow Pitch Jigging?

Baitcasters can work excellent for vertical jigging. For this technique, choose slower reels and lower gear ratio, and pair it with fast action rods.

Knowing how to control your reel, and techniques like palming/thumbing are something you need to learn before you start jigging with it.

Besides the reel, your success here will be determined by overall setup. Having a well-balanced rod and reel is a must. For vertical jigging, lighter and shorter rods should be used, with medium or heavy power.

When it comes to slow pitch jigging, different kind of baitcasters should be used. Fast reel with a high gear ration is a way to success, paired with medium or even slow action rod.

Although this setup can be great if you use it in some regular conditions, many professionals are staying away from it when it comes to landing a big one, because the handles and the overall design is not meant to be used for it.

However, as a recreational angler you can make the most out of it. Which model and brand you will choose depends on your desires, budget, and how much versatility do you want from it, however I always advise to choose reputable brands and good product because initial investment will pay off in the end.

And one more thing - you can also check my related article about best gear ratio for jigging reel to learn more ...

What are the Pros and Cons of Using a Baitcaster for Jigging?

Jigging with baitcaster comes with pros and cons, and here are the most important ones!


  • Less line snags.
  • Thumbing allows you to sense fish checking your lure.
  • Excellent for heavy jigs.
  • Better depth control.
  • Works well in locations with strong currents.
  • Better drag.
  • And lastly, these reel are versatile and can be used for other fishing techniques too.


  • Not suitable for light lures.
  • Not suitable for complete beginners.
  • More expensive than spinning reels.
  • Harder to balance and less sensitive, especially for beginners.

These are the pros and cons that anyone who tried different setups can conform.

Everything else you can experience, such as how tired your wrist gets after long hours on the water or similar is very individual. You will have to try it out and let me know what you think!

What are Some Essential Tips for Successful Jigging With Baitcaster?

Some of the most important things to know were already mentioned when it comes to right choice of equipment and intended use, however, here are a few more tips for successful jigging with baitcasters:

  • Choose light reels that balance well with the rod, and make sure that the rod handle is comfortable and heavier to balance it out.
  • Don’t focus on line capacity when choosing a reel for jigging in smaller and shallower freshwater as that feature is less important in vertical jigging.
  • Use short rods, less than 7ft long.
  • Low profile reels are easier to manage for beginners so choose those.
  • If you are a beginner, use one rod – there is a trend of handling two rods but that is most often less productive, especially for those who are less experienced.
  • When it comes to fishing line, all have pros and cons here, but for a beginner, mono is the easiest to handle while fluoro has the best properties, so choose between these two.
  • Practice as much and as often as you can - theory can never replace practice, so remember what you have read here and head out to the water!

Jigging With Baitcaster - Tips


Jigging with baitcaster can be great if you know how to do it! Personally, I like to use reels with a flipping switch that allows me excellent depth control.

If you are new to this, start with some basic vertical jigging in your local freshwater. Jigging for fish like crappie or walleye can be great with baitcasters.

Make sure that the rest of your equipment matches the reel, including rod, line, and lure!

About Me

Slo-fishing - About Us


I am Siniša Pintar (friends call me Sina), the guy behind Slo-fishing.si and eBook writer. This site is base camp for fishing enthusiasts from all over the world. I love fishing and want to share all my stories, knowledge and my experience with any and all potential anglers. Read more ...

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