How to Fish from Shooting Docks

Shooting docks works because a fisherman can stay back off the fish and not spook them. Equipment is simple because it doesn’t require racks, multiple poles or double-bait rigs. Plus, it’s a fun way to fish.

Everything starts with good technique.

  • (1) Hold the jig safely and about a foot from the reel.
  • (2) Load the rod by pulling the jig back. Always hold the rod at the same position and angle for consistency, like an anchor point for shooting a bow.
  • (3) Get a low center of gravity so the trajectory will be low. Aim toward the target spot.
  • (4) Release the jig.

You will be catching fish that other fishermen can’t get to with ordinary techniques. It’s a subtle approach. Targets are beside walkways, under pontoon boats and any other hard to reach spot. Dark shadow areas are usually the best spots.

I use Gamma 6-pound test line, high-vis for seeing bites. Most good spinning combos will work for shooting. Last fall I started using the6’ Wally Marshall 6’ Pro Series some. For baits, I like the Bobby Garland Baby Shad and Slab Slayers because they skip really well to get into small openings. I also like the Baby Shad Swim’R because the tail helps fish find the bait. A 1 /24-ounce Head Dockt’R Shooter jighead works great because the sharp collar rings holds plastic. I also use Mo Glo heads.

The biggest improvement for dock shooting is the Dock Shoot’R Pull Tab by Bobby Garland. It allows a fisherman to shoot without worrying about whether or not the jig might hook them when they shoot. The fisherman can relax and enjoy fishing instead of being apprehensive. Plus, the tab provides flash for an added attractant.

Another thing I do is use a loop knot. A loop provides more action. I only want the loop to be about a half inch so it won’t tangle with the hook and hook barb.

Like any other technique, the more you practice the better you get. Work to get the jig in places you may not think you can get it to go. The hardest to reach places are the ones with the least fishing pressure.

One last tip is that docks often re-load. If you’ve done well at a dock don’t hesitate to go back in an hour or two.