Easiest Way To Rig Pinfish For Snapper (And Other Offshore Species)
Note: This very popular post on how to rig pinfish for snapper was originally published on August 31, 2020. But since then, we’ve had TONS of very helpful info added to the comments, so be sure to read the comments section too. Enjoy!
Want to see an easy way to rig pinfish for mangrove snapper?
Most people use a knocker rig or Carolina rig, which are great rigs, but there’s actually an easier way to rig them that works really well.
This rig doesn’t need any weights, beads, or swivels and it’s really quick to tie.
I was recently out fishing in the Keys and we caught loads of big mangrove snapper on this simple rig, as well as some grouper and mutton snapper.
This rig worked with both live pinfish and pinfish chunks and would also work for any other baitfish, as well as baits like shrimp and squid.
Check it out below.
Rigging Pinfish For Snapper [VIDEO]
How To Rig Pinfish On A Jig Head For Snapper
To rig pinfish for snapper and other bottom feeders, all you need is a flat-bottomed jig head, such as a boxing glove-shaped jig head.
This takes the need for a weight and beads away, and you don’t need a swivel, so there are fewer knots to tie (which means fewer opportunities for a fish to break you off).
Just tie the jig head to the end of the leader and you’re ready to go!
Now, why a boxing glove-shaped jig head?
Because they sit upright on the bottom, which keeps your pinfish looking natural.
Other jigs that we love for rigging soft plastics on don’t have a flat bottom, so they fall over to the side.
As far as actually hooking the fish, be sure to put the hook under the chin and out through the tough cartilage above the lips.
This will keep the jig head and pinfish upright, as well as keep the pinfish secure on the hook.
If you’re hooking a chunk of bait, hook the chunk through a side or corner so that it’s streamlined and doesn’t helicopter through the water (which can tangle or twist your line).
Now that your pinfish is all ready to go, it’s time to catch some fish!
How To Catch Snapper When Using A Jig Head
When you’re letting your bait sit on the bottom, you’re going to be feeling a lot of taps.
It can be tempting to try to set the hook every time, but if you do that, you’ll miss fish.
Instead, you want to wait for the thump.
You’ll know when you have a thump vs. a tap because it’s a lot heavier.
A tap is smaller fish pecking at it, but a thump is when a bigger fish grabs it, so set the hook then.
One final note: this type of rig is not meant to be used in every situation.
The jig head is obviously a j hook and there are some reefs where j hooks are not allowed, so do your research before you go out to see what’s allowed and what’s not.
Also, j hooks are best for actively fishing, like we were here.
We were waiting on the bite and then setting the hook as soon as we felt the thump.
If you’re letting your rods sit in the rod holders, or you’re fishing with children or inexperienced fishermen, then you’re better off going with a rig that uses a circle hook.
Instead of tying complicated bottom fishing rigs, hooking a pinfish on a jig head is an easy and effective way to catch snapper.
You’re less likely to get your line tangled up because the weight is at the very end of the line.
Plus, if you use flat-bottom jig heads like the Mission Fishin jig heads then your bait will stay upright.
Have any questions about rigging pinfish for snapper?
Let us know down in the comments.
If you know someone who wants to catch more snapper, please TAG or SHARE this with them!
And thanks to Two Conchs Charters for putting us on these fish!
P.S. Want access to our best fishing spots and tips, plus discounts to our online tackle store (where we sell these jig heads)? Click here to join us in the Insider Club!
STOP WASTING TIME ON THE WATER!
Do what the “SMART ANGLERS” are doing and join the Insider Club.
Here’s what you’ll receive today when you join: