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Everyone eventually develops a comfort bait. Something that you have lots of confidence in and you have a long history of result with. For me, it is the plastic worm. Its versatility allows you to fish it in almost every situation you will find. It can be fished in shallow water, deep water, ledges, shorelines, thick weeds and grass, even top water.
You can add weight to match conditions, sound using glass and plastic rattles, fish them weedless or with an open hook. Nowadays you can get them in about every color you can think of and they are still fairly inexpensive.
Choosing a color and rig
You could spend hours in your bait and tackle store looking at all the different color combinations of plastic worms. Start with something natural looking for your area. Some good colors might be grape, June bug, motor oil, blue with red tail, and black. Ask around and find out what works best in your area.
Plastic worms can be rigged many different ways but to start I would try the Texas Rig which is just a worm with a bullet weight attached. The weight can slide up and down the line so the fish does not feel as much resistance when it picks the bait up.
- Cast your worm to the target area.
- Allow the worm to completely sink to the bottom, remember to watch your line as it is sinking. Sometimes you will see the line look like it is “walking away” which means the fish has your bait in its mouth and is leaving with it or you might see the line simply “jerk” slightly. In either case SET THE HOOK!
- After your worm has reached the bottom lift your rod tip up to about 10 o’clock and tighten any slack line. Stop realing when your line is tight.
- Lift you rod tip slightly to raise the worm off the bottom and reel about 1 to 2 turns…pause for a couple of seconds.
- Now do the same thing again but lift your rod tip 2 to 3 times in a row…try to give the work a “natural” look…like it is a snake looking for something to eat.
- Keep trying different variances of this but remember to work it slow.
- Try different colors, weight, rigs, worm size, speed, depth of water, and structure until something works.
- When a bass hits it is usually not much more that a light “tap-tap”.
- Lower your rod tip slightly, tighten line, and set the hook
- If you miss the fish stop realing or immediately cast back to the same area and repeat what you were doing. A lot of times they will bite again if they were not stuck with the hook in any way.
- If you get a bass on, try to get the fish to you and off the hook as fast as possible. This will help the fish recover from the experience faster and live to bite again.
Learning to fish plastic worms will deffintly improve you’re over all ability to catch largemouth bass but remember fishing worms is like anything…it takes practice to really be effective but it will be one of your favorite methods for future trips.
Thanks for reading!
Please practice catch and release whenever possible and remember the large fish don’t taste any better than smaller ones. Take a picture and let the big ones go back to catch again later.