My Jig Shake Brings No Bass to the Boat

So many titles I could’ve used for this one:

“Stirred, Not Shaken”

“(Don’t) Shake it Like a Polaroid Picture”

“Shake and Bake”

“Don’t you Dare Shake What Your Mama Gave Ya”

“Seizure Salad”

“Shake it Off”

I am, of course, talking about swim jigs.

I’ve read the articles and seen the TV shows. Alabama anglers head down a line of shoreline water willow throwing a swim jig and as they retrieve it they go into full spaz mode, twitching and shaking their rod tip. All of a sudden the rod loads up, the angler stops shaking and starts reeling and a five pound green gorilla is brought over the side of the boat.

As I’ve become a swim jig fanatic over the past five years, I’ve repeatedly tried to emulate their tactics and their success. I’ve tried it with different jigs and with different trailers…with braid and with fluorocarbon…with a variety of rods and reels…and with varying levels of shaking power, and I just can’t get it to work. Of the hundreds of fish I’ve caught on a swim jig, you can count on one hand the number I’ve caught while shaking, and it’s not for a lack of trying.

My house is about 670 miles from Gadsden, Alabama, on the Coosa River, where swim jigs are an essential tool and shaking seems to be mandatory. It is about 980 miles from La Crosse, Wisconsin, where swim jigs are equally popular and where shaking seems to be less important. You’d think that I’d be closer to being an Alabamian than a Wisconsite in this respect, but for some reason I lean towards Cheesehead status.