Pompano is a near-perfect light tackle species. They put up a formidable fight and taste great, but (there is always a but) they can sometimes be challenging to catch. Because they have a smaller mouth, anglers often find it challenging to find the perfect lure. That and the tedious effort in working lures over long periods of time. Look no further, here are two favorites that WORK.
Although goofy jigs were initially created for ice fishers. The Goofy Jig has found a following among pompano chasers because they work as well as anything else available (other than live sand fleas). The hook is small enough to be taken without a problem, yet sturdy enough to withstand the fight. Plus, they are durable, cast like launched from a slingshot, and come in a variety of weights & colors. Many manufacturers offer similar products, but one of the most popular is DOC’s GOOFY JIGS, which is a specialized model explicitly made for pompano.
The action upon decent is what triggers the strike, but if you want to see the jig supercharged. Add a teaser fly to the same loop knot, and you will be amazed by the results. Make sure the teaser has enough flash, the best color options that I have found are pink, white and chartreuse.
- 2500 – 3000 series reel
- 7’-7’6” medium-light action rod
- 10LB braided line
- 20LB fluorocarbon leader – approx. 4 ft
- Goofy Jig
- Teaser (optional but highly recommended)
Here is a great video demonstration on how to make a Pompano teaser:
Rigging the Goofy Jig
Connect the mainline directly to the leader with no swivel, preferably using a uni knot. If using the Goofy Jig alone, tie a loop knot and attach the jig to the end of the loop. If using a teaser, there are two options: (1) tie above, placing the teaser directly behind jig or (2) thread teaser onto the leader, then tie a loop knot. Attach jig. In option one, the teaser will be stationary while in option two, it will slide on the same loop as the jig. Regardless of which you choose, it is essential to make sure the teaser hook faces the opposite direction of the jig hook.
Nekid Ball Jig
The Nekid Ball Jig is relatively new on the market and may not be available where you fish. The design consists of a round jig head and a single hook. Instead of being molded together, they connect via a small chain. Like the Goofy Jig, this jig can be used solo or with a teaser and is tied as described above.
Using these jigs
The key to either the Goofy or Nekid Ball Jig is making the pompano think it is chasing a live sand flea. Select the size needed to cast to nearby sandbars, beach channels, or edges. As the jig drops to the bottom, it will cause a puff of sand to rise into the water, similar to when a flea leaves a hiding spot to flee approaching fish.
If you do not get a hit on the initial drop, work to lift the rod tip, pulling the jig across the bottom and off the sandbar or channel edge. Pompano often hit on the second drop, so be ready. If you do not have a hit on this second drop, pick up your retrieval speed, hopping the jig across the bottom, creating puffs each time the lure hits bottom. Do not stop once you have left the sandbar or channel. Pompano cruise anywhere along the shoreline, looking for opportunity. Fish will often hit your jig after following it almost back to the beach, boat or pier.
If you are looking to see how to use the jigs from bridges be sure to watch this video: