Put a skirt on – and punch that jig

Bulk up your bait for more bites

Punch skirts are popular with many bass anglers because they turn normal creature baits into essentially jig presentations. Bass angler Jeff Bruhl put the technique to good use during a September bass-fishing trip to Venice, La., just before the river jumped up due to late-summer rains in the Midwest.

“It’s just something else to catch their attention,” Bruhl said. “It bulks up the bait, and makes it look more like a bream instead of a crawfish.”

Although some weights are designed to hold skirts in place, Bruhl fished his punch skirt below a pegged 1-ounce tungsten weight. 

Since he’s trying to mimic bream this time of year, Bruhl likes punch skirts with a lot of watermelon and a bit of blue and orange. His favorite is one made by Delta Lures.

When he fishes Venice, he punches the rig through hyacinth rafts and matted hydrilla.

Bass pro Randall Tharp of Port St. Joe, Fla., is also a big fan of punch skirts, but he fishes them around spottier vegetation. He feels the skirts hang up too frequently when punched through matted grass, which kills his efficiency.

The skirts aren’t exactly cheap, ranging in price from $4 all the way up to about $12.