6 questions to Terry Smith, travelling angler and owner of Jigabite webshop.
- When (and where) did you start Jigabite ?
I’m based on the South Coast of England (I can see the sea from my house and also the local pier where I first started fishing over 40 years ago). I started Jigabite about 10 years ago, as a part-time venture, when I got frustrated at having to order the specialist tackle from overseas every time I planned a fishing trip. The business soon grew to be too busy so I made the decision to take it on full-time about 5 years ago. The business has simply grown in strength year after year. I also purchased Adventure Angler two years ago who was really my only serious competitor in the UK. This gave me access to even more high-end brands. I’ve more than 25 years experience in Retail managing large outlets in the UK in the Motor Car and Cycle business, and now 10 years involved in the fishing industry.
-What kind of equipment do you sell on Jigabite?
I specialise in high-end tackle to fit the popping and jigging market. This does venture into the spinning world but mainly the kind of tackle you add to your tackle bag when travelling overseas. We also offer a lot of great rods, reels and accessories for the slow pitch jigging technic, and now Jigabite became the first company in the UK to offer such a wide range of products from the High-end manufactures. I now source these great products from more than 50 countries worldwide, in fact, probably 99% is sourced from overseas. I cater for the travelling angler wherever they may be based worldwide.
-What are you favorite brands/models right now?
As an end-user as well as a retailer, I have my favourite lures. These are the ones that always seem to produce wherever I fish. These would include the Heru Cubera Popper that I will not travel without, and I like the TP Kustom and Blaze Garage poppers also. The High-end Amegari’s and Jackfin’s lures are always a good bet, but I really like some of the lesser known brands such as Full-Scale and Seikai Collection. Then, there are the very nice quality Bertox lures that I will always have with me.
Regarding jigging, for many years Jigabite has stocked slow pitch jigs from the Maxel company that offer some of the best value for money on the market (their Hybrid reel is a great little one for SPJ, and I will be adding some of the newer Rage Reels this year). Also, I’ve just recently been approved to stock the Shout products.
I like to supply the best where possible and I think by offering the likes of Sea Floor Control, FclLabo, Current, K-Flat and Marine Bait the jig choice is huge.
The Temple Reef range of rods has been a mainstay for Jigabite, especially the SPJ rods, the Levitate is one of the finest in its class and then there is the Gravitate for those on a lesser budget.
Rods from Ripple Fisher, Yamaga Blanks, Black Hole, and Jigstar are also available to compliment the range.
-You often travel to test equipment and destinations, where have you been recently?
I have now fished in 50 different countries, predominantly popping or jigging and most recently visited Madagascar, Spain and Papua New Guinea. I have personally tested the vast majority of lures that I stock as well as a lot of the rods and reels, etc. As well as fishing in many of the top tropical destinations I’ve spent some time jigging in colder waters around Iceland and especially Norway where SPJ is finally taking a hold. Cod and other cold water species love a fluttering jig and I include halibut among them.
-What is your best fishing trip so far?
This is so difficult to answer as every trip can create that special moment and for varying reasons. But I’d say Costa Rica, where I spent a month with a friend travelling and fishing both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts. I think I warmed to the country and the people which made it special as well as catching everything from tarpon in the Caribbean to sailfish in the Pacific and guapote in lake Arenal!
-What’s your next?
For 2020, I would absolutely love to re visit PNG as the weather was far from kind to us this year and the potential is immense!