Depending on your latitude, trolling a mojo rig is either the hottest new tactic or the oldest trick in the book.
Captains below the Mason Dixon line have been using these super-sized leadheads, skirts, and shads to catch trophy rockfish for decades, but it’s just in the last few years that the lures have caught on in New Jersey and New York, and they are almost unheard of in New England waters.
The appeal of trolling mojos? Their simplicity. No wire line or leadcore, no specialized rods, no worries about finding the right depth or tuning them to swim right; just clip the rig on a heavy conventional outfit and let it swim just above the bottom.
A large conventional reel with a lower gear ratio to crank in the heavy jigs and the fish is a must for trolling mojos. Keeping the rod steady when fighting a fish (rather than pumping and winding) will result in fewer lost fish on mojo rigs. A reel should also have a smooth drag and enough line capacity to hold 300-plus yards of 65-pound test.
Tsunami Forged 12
- 350 yards of 65-pound-test braid
Shimano Torium 20
- 375 yards of 65-pound-test braid
Penn Fathom FTH25LW
- 380 yards of 65-pound-test braid
A medium-heavy conventional setup is perfect for trolling mojos. Though the rigs are heavy, they don’t have as much water resistance as an umbrella rig or even a deep-diving plug, which means you can use slightly lighter tackle.
St. Croix Mojo Salt MSWC70MHF
- 7’ / Medium-Heavy / 40- to 65-pound test (braid) / $210
Penn Rampage RAMBW2050C70
- 7’ / 20- to 50-pound test / $59.95
Lamiglas Triflex TFX 7240 C
- 7’6” / 20- to 40-pound test / $350