Ned Rig 101 - When, Where And How To Fish The Ned Rig
If you’re not fishing a Ned rig, it’s time to start. This simple, jig and finesse plastic presentation is easy to fish and catches bass, walleye, panfish and more. Here’s a rundown on when, where and how to fish the Ned rig.
A typical Ned rig consists of a 3” stick-style worm on a light, finesse jig head, such as VMC’s new Ned Rig Jig. Soft-plastic minnows, swimbaits, tubes and creatures between 3” to 4” can also be combined with Ned-style jigs.
Fishing these type of finesse offerings is one of the hottest presentations going right now. The reason? Ned rigging catches a lot of fish but also puts big ones in the boat, too.
When And Where To Ned Rig
Unlike some specialized presentations that peak at certain times during the season or in specific scenarios, Ned rigging is ultra-versatile. This finesse method consistently catches fish in cold to warm water, and in clear to dirty conditions.
A 1/16-, 1/8- or 3/16-ounce Ned Rig Jig paired with a finesse plastic is an excellent presentation for shallow water. You’ll catch bass, walleye, panfish, pike and more casting this little morsel to shorelines, points, shallow flats, the tops of weed beds and along weed lines.
Fishing a 3/16 or 1/4 ounce Ned rig on mid- to deep structures also catches these same species. Focus efforts on points, mid-lake humps, island shorelines, sand bars and flats.
How To Ned Rig
Part of Ned rigging’s charm is how effortlessly the tactic tricks fish to bite. You certainly don’t need to be a high-level pro to catch ‘em Ned rigging. Here’s a basic approach for getting started.
Cast the rig, then let it fall to bottom. Keep a slight bow in the line to encourage a natural-looking fall. Don’t leave too much slack in the line, though, as this can limit quickly detecting a strike as the bait is falling, which is very common.
If the bait doesn’t get eaten on the way down, let it sit for a couple seconds on bottom. Delaying the retrieve can tease a bite from an interested fish. Next, work the bait along the floor. Experiment with dragging, shaking and hopping retrieves. Adding pauses along the way often triggers strikes.
VMC’s Ned Rig Jig Design Highlights
Now, let’s talk about the importance of using the right equipment for Ned rigging. The good news is you don’t need much equipment, but using a quality jig designed for the technique is recommended. Here are a few reasons why.
Ned rigging catches a lot of fish. This is great, but using a poor quality jig will quickly lead to trouble. Battling multiple fish beats-up a plastic and may even damage an inferior jig’s keeper, hook or head. This, in turn, can prevent the jig from being able to properly hold the plastic, forcing an angler to waste fishing time and money as they’re required to fix an existing bait or replace damaged plastics and jigs.
VMC specifically designed the Ned Rig Jig to combat these issues. Its unique, beveled-edge conical keeper locks a plastic in place, securing the presentation for prolonged use and multiple hook sets. This keeper works seamlessly with Z-Man’s ElaZtech baits, including the popular TRD. It also securely holds other types of soft-plastic baits, such as a trimmed-down 13 Fishing Bubble Butt, which is another can’t-miss finesse presentation.
Tip: For added holding power, apply a drop of high-strength glue to the top of a plastic before snugging it up flush against the back of a jig head.
The Ned Rig Jig has a strong, forged hook that’s ready to do battle with big fish. Just as relevant for finesse applications is the jig’s hybrid wide gap and bend, which maximizes hook sets and delivers added strength.
The Ned Rig Jig’s tapered design makes it incredibly snag resistant when it’s fished along rocky bottoms. The head also matches well with stick-worms and other finesse plastics for a natural, lifelike profile.
Ned Rig Rods, Reels And Line Suggestions
Ned rigging doesn’t require a high-end, technique-specific stick. A fast, light to medium-light spinning rod does the job just fine. The Defy Black 6’7” ML, Fate V3 6’8” ML and Omen Gold 7’2” ML are just a few options to consider and go well with a Kalon Series reel. The 6’10” Radioactive Spinning Combo is another good choice.
Many anglers love fishing finesse jigs on 6- to 8-pound monofilament due to the line’s buoyant, forgiving and manageable characteristics. Sufix Advance Monofilament is a top-tier line for various finesse presentations, Ned rigging being no exception.
Finesse fishing using 6- to 10-pound braid with a fluorocarbon leader is also popular. Braid’s advantages include long casts, solid hook sets and sensitivity, especially in deep water. Sufix 832 Advanced Superline, ProMix Braid and 131 Braided Fishing Line are all reliable options for the technique. Tie on a 6- to 12-pound Advance Fluorocarbon Leader to any of these braided lines and you’re all set.
If you’re looking for an easy fishing tactic that can catch lots of fish with the potential to hook lunkers, the Ned rig is your answer.