How To: Slow Jigging the Hogy Harness Jig for Giant Bluefin Tuna East of Chatham #204

Capt. Mike Hogan and the Hogy Crew head out to Regal Sword, a well-known fishing spot East of Chatham, to target giant Bluefin Tuna on the Hogy Harness Jig lures.

There are two main methods when searching for tuna offshore; staying with life (whales bubble feeding, top water tuna, bait on the surface, bird activity) and the search and drop technique, which involves doing a search pattern with your fish finder looking for targets.

The Hogy Harness Jig is one of the most versatile, life-like bait fish imitation lures for targeting BFT.

Location: The Regal Sword (East of Chatham)
Time: Early August
Lure: Hogy Harness Jig
Strategy #1: Stay with the signs of life (whales, birds, bait).

Strategy #2: Search and drop.
Idle slowly and watch the fish finder for targets.
The Outfit: High quality, tough stuff!
Reel: Shimano Talica 20s and 25s (conventional)
Line: 100lb. braided hollow core
Leader: 30′ wind-on jigging leader, 130lb. fluorocarbon
The Technique: Fish slow! Bring the tip up slowly, and drop the rod slowly. Let it down and crank up. If you feel like you’ve come up off the bottom, reel up and drop it back down.
Many of the hits will come on the drop; be vigilant.
If you reach bottom before you’re supposed to reach bottom, bare down.
Step 1: When you hook up, let the fish run
Step 2: If you’re on a center console, head to the bow and fight the fish about 15% off the center. Be conscious of your angling position and the captain should position the boat to accommodate the angler.
Step 3: Let the drag to do the work! Let the fish tire itself out.
Step 4: Get line back on the reel without letting the fish rest too much. There will be about 5-6 good runs.
Step 5: Take turns, you will get tired! Switch out before you get tired, that way every angler on the road will be in top physical shape and the fish will
Step 6: Be prepared if the fish changes direction. Reel as fast as you can if it starts running toward you.
Step 7: Be prepared to get vertical. The closer the fish gets, the deeper it will dive beneath the boat.
Step 8: Shorten the circles. Put your palm on the reel; apply pressure while you make progress as the fish swims away. Repeat and trust your gear and connections.
Step 9: End game communication. Be communicative with other anglers and the captain. It is their responsibility to listen and reposition the boat as needed.
Step 10: Plan for harvest or for release. If keeping, consider using a harpoon or a gaf. In either event, the goal is to hit the head. If the fish is very large, this is an opportunity to get a tail rope on the fish to further secure it’s position next to the boat. If releasing, try to get a lip gaf as quickly as possible and swim it next to the boat. It’s going to be very tired and will need to be revived, which can take up to 45 minutes.
How to re-rig your soft bait after a fight:
Step 1: Enter the rigging hole on the nose. Feel for the passageway and push.
Step 2: Exit the second hole on the back.
Step 3: Slide the bait flush with the jig head over the knuckle of the tail.
Step 4: Option – glue to secure.

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