Twitching jigs for salmon or steelhead is easy. What I like to do is use my St. Croix Premier ML 7’6″ or a Shimano Clarus 9′ spinning rod. The reels I use are the Shimano Saros 4000 or the Quantum Smoke. I typically fish salmon in rivers or the ocean from my sea kayak. The longer rod allows for better casting distance and makes fighting the larger fish somewhat easier while the shorter rod allows for precision control over the lure. For fishing lines sometimes I use 12lb-17lb test main line of monofilament or a 20lb braided main line, using a swivel to connect a leader when I need one. For leader material I prefer 17-20lb monofilament due to it’s price, durability and low visibility characteristics.
My favorite jigs for salmon and steelhead fishing are 1/4 – 3/8 oz weight lead jig heads. My variety tends to have the colors pink, red, purple, black and white. I prefer paddle tailed worms, marabou jigs, or a combination of the two. The fish pursue and hit these lures aggressively every time.
The technique for me is to find the lead of an eddy, or any other water potentially holding fish.. Then I cast and let the jig sink to the bottom, and begin reeling it in slowly combined with short twitching of the rod every second or so. In situations where there is a lot of bottom debris, large rocks or vegetation which might snag your lure perhaps an inline spinner is more appropriate than a jig. Often the river flow will impart erratic motion on the lures and I believe this is helpful. Fish often hit the jigs on the drop but in any case you’ll know when you’re hooked up right away! This technique is much more fun that fishing bobber and eggs.
Using jigs, a person can cover more of the water column since the lure can drop all the way to the bottom and you can work the lure at that level as well as all the way to the surface. Additionally a jig can be dropped next to a boulder or drop off in the water where I have picked up holding fish many times.