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Fishing plastics: the method

Posted on July 9, 2012

While fishing, I observe lots of angler behavior, and I can definitely say many people tend to fish plastics too fast – especially for bass – whether it’s a tube rigged wacky or Texas-rigged.

We need to slow down and try new techniques for retrieving a lure. Most anglers simply work the lift-drop, lift-drop. There’s nothing wrong with casting out and leaving it motionless, or maybe just dragging it along a bit.

You can use both baitcasters and spinning rods with plastics. With a baitcaster, when fishing plastics, I run line ahead of the reel over my thumb. It’s almost like fishing a drop-line.

We’re starting to see more bass guys using long spinning rods with long-cast reels. They’re casting small crankbaits, say a No. 4 crank, but we should also use that for casting Texas-rigged worms or fishing wacky.

I recommend going to a 1/16- or 1/32-ounce bullet weight or sinker with a Texas rig. It would be difficult to cast with a baitcaster for any great distance, but it’ll work with a long spinning rod, say a 7-foot, 3-inch setup. I find that really performs for more targeted, pinpointed accuracy, especially in shallow-water conditions.

Too often I hear about anglers watching line movement to determine when bass inhale a lure. You should be able to feel that bite taking place well before line starts to move.

Don’t assume that light bites or nipping at the lure is NOT a bass. Many times it's a big bass, so set the hook hard when that occurs.

As for plastics size, for more aggressive fish, I step it up. A 10-inch plastic is big, but for aggressive fish it’s appropriate. After a weather front, start with a 4- to 6-inch Texas rig. In stable weather, go larger.

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