What this rig is all about:
Sturgeon are fish that are sought after for their delicious, pork-like meat. It tends to take a lot of patience, waiting, and monitoring to catch a sturgeon but the payoff is worth it. This guide will teach you how to setup a rig to maximize your chances of landing a sturgeon. The key is maximizing the sensitivity so that you can see the bite and minimizing the sturgeon’s ability to detect that the bait is on a hook.
Here is a list of materials/items that you will need to make this rig:
Links include pricing info on Amazon and are the suggested products for this rig.
- 65 pound braid main line
- 80 pound mono or fluorocarbon leader
- 5 to 7/0 hook (must be barbless)
- Barrel swivel
- Pyramid sinker
- Sinker slide
- Egg sinker (⅛ to ¼ ounce)
Recommended rod and reel
How to use this rig:
A great bait to use is sand shrimp and while you’re baiting up, you can also rub some sand shrimp pro-cure on your hands to remove any unnatural scents that you would otherwise have while handling the bait.
Sturgeon bites are notoriously soft and subtle so using a rod that has a very sensitive tip yet strong enough to pull up a large fish is key. Or you can use a rod balancer to help you recognize the bite. Once you think there’s a bite, you have to set the hook strong and with confidence, never leave any slack in the line.
Because of the subtleness of the sturgeon’s bite, you can use fluorocarbon line for the leader. Fluoro’s sensitivity has an advantage compared to monofilament due to the tightly packed molecules of the material and therefore, is better at transmitting information from the end of the line. The tradeoff is that fluoro has more memory than mono so it’s harder to manage. Also, when cinching down a knot, you absolutely need to wet the line otherwise the knot may fail.
The case for using monofilament for the leader is that sturgeon may feel the toughness of the fluoro and spit out the bait before you can set the hook. Test either leader line material to see what works best for you.
In order to maximize your chances of landing the fish, make sure you have someone with a large enough net present.
This rig calls for a pyramid sinker but the size of it just needs to be adequate for the current of the water, the stronger the current, the larger the size.
- Attach the pyramid sinker to the sinker slide and run it through your main braided line. If you don’t have a sinker slide, any swivel will do. If you want, you can string a couple of beads at the slide as well to help preserve the knot that you will tie next.
- Tie a knot to secure a barrel swivel at the end of the main line. Any secure knot will do. I suggest a palomar knot.
- Now for the leader setup. First, attach your leader line to your barbless hook using an egg loop knot. The leader should be about 2 feet long. Check this video for a tutorial for the egg loop knot:
- Insert 2 beads, the egg sinker, and then 2 more beads into the leader line. The egg sinker is there to help the bait stay close to the bottom.
- Tie the other end of the leader line to the barrel swivel using any secure knot of your choosing. The final rig should look like this.
I hope you like this simple sturgeon rig setup! Go out there and test it out! Let me know if this rig is working for you and rate it at the top of this article.