Captain Gene Quigley
Location: Manasquan, New Jersey
Credentials: A fly and artificial specialist, Captain Quigley has earned a reputation as a top guide on the Jersey Coast, putting clients on stripers up to 58 pounds.
Number of years guiding: 16
Contact: (732) 528-1861; shorecatch.com
Favorite Hardbait: Gag’s Grabbers Mambo Minnow
Size: 5 in.
Weight: 5/8 oz.
Details: “The Mambo has a very unique wobble. It’s extremely tight, which I think most accurately matches the movement of many baitfish. They also have great action no matter what speed you use on the retrieve. Something I’ve noticed that works really well with these lures is reeling very fast and stopping abruptly so the lure suspends. I often catch more bass when the lure hangs than I do during a steady retrieve."
Pajama Plugs Metal-Lipped Swimmer
Favorite Topwater: Pajama Plugs Metal-Lip Swimmer
Size: 7 in.
Details: “Lots of metal-lip swimmers only perform well in calm water or when there’s a chop, but the Pajamas have great action in all conditions. Fished correctly, a metal-lip will draw bass up from deeper water. Anglers move in on a blitz and are in such a hurry, they cast and retrieve this style of lure too fast. You have to have patience with metal-lips. You need a slow retrieve to achieve the right action on the surface. Too quick and all they do is spin.”
Favorite Soft Plastic: Hogy
Size: 10 in.
Details: “Hogy Lures are hand-poured and nothing in the world moves like one in the water. I use them a lot because they match all kinds of forage from eels to large bunker. Hogy makes a double-hook rig that you can buy with their baits and I prefer it. The hooks are heavy-gauge, so they add just enough weight to keep the lure tracking an inch or two under the surface. You don’t want this type of bait skipping on top.”
Favorite Jig: AVA 47 Diamond Jig
Color: Silver, undressed hook
Size: 5 in.
Weight: 3 oz.
Details: “Diamond jigs are absolutely one of the most versatile lures out there when the fish go deep. I prefer a plain hook without a tube. The size 47 gets down to the bottom really quickly and mimics everything from sand eels to peanut bunker. Rather than letting the lure hit bottom and start jigging up and down, I’ll tell my clients to let it hit, then crank as fast as they can. When the lure reaches midway up the water column, I’ll say drop it back down. We call this speed-jigging, and it often produces more reaction strikes from bigger bass.”