• Posted by Nick Honachefsky
  • On July 31, 2017
  • Comments
  •  2

Some fish dole out crushing hits, put up a pretty solid fight and may even give you some head-thrashing shakes. And then there are jack crevalles.

Every time I fish Florida’s east coast off of Cape Canaveral, Pt. St. Lucie and Sebastian Inlet area waters I am reminded of the knee-buckling, explosive topwater strikes jacks dish out. They absolutely punish poppers. You need heavier gear to hang on tight to a 20 to 30-pound jack, and a good rule to remember is you don’t beat a jack, you just have to last him out.

Poppers should be of heavy-duty construction that can take a true beating. Offerings that can withstand the punishment jacks put out include the Yo-Zuri Bull Popper, Williamson Popper Pro, and Creek Chub Knucklehead. You’ll see jacks corralling bait schools like sardines, mullet or menhaden up against the bulkheads in the bays, or in open schools outside inlets along the coastline. Cast poppers on the outskirts of bait schools to pull jacks from underneath out to hit the supposedly fleeing baitfish lost from the rest of the pack. Many times you will simply see schools of jacks out in the open water finning around looking for a fight, but they may just be milling around. A popper ripped across the surface can flip the switch to get the jacks going aggro. When a jack blows up on the popper immediately rear back and set the hook, but be sure to have your drag system a notch or two over halfway, so as not to be too tight where a rushing jack can snap the line but with enough resistance to gain ground on the fish and tire him out after he makes myriad screaming runs.

Sticks should be medium/heavy 7-foot spinners such as a Penn Carnage CARJGII 3080S66 or Shimano Talavera TES66MHB matched with spinning reels able to hold enough line and with sturdy drag systems that can handle the burn from a big jack. Go with a Penn Spinfisher 6500 or Van Staal VM275 spooled with 50-pound Power Pro, 60 to 80-pound Seaguar or Yo-Zuri TopKnot fluorocarbon Leader tied to a Tactical Angler TA 125-pound Power clip.

Suggested Gear


Bull Pop

The Yo-Zuri Bull Pop Lures are versatile popper lures that cover a variety of inshore and offshore fishing applications. These lures are ideal for surf casting for striped bass, Jack Crevall, or Roosterfish. The Bull Pop lures are also great for casting or breaking schools of Tuna or Dorado from the boat.



Popper Pro

The Williamson Popper Pro Lures have a versatile design that allows you to fish a wide variety of techniques such as pop on the top, slash and stall and classic walk the dog. These popper lures are precisely weighted for maximum casting distance.



Spinfisher V SSV6500 Spinning Reel

The Spinfisher V Series reels have many improved features such as the rubber gasket that keeps superline from slipping. Another great feature is the line capacity rings, so you will always know how much line is left during a tough angling fight.


Tactical Anglers

125lbs Power Clips 25pk

Tactical Anglers Power / Fast Clips are strong fishing clips that allow for fast and easy changing of lures. Made from a single thick stainless steel wire to provide maximum strength and durability, TA Power Clips have a slip-proof design.



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