Spring Time Stick Worms

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Springtime is every bass anglers kick before the summer. With chilly mornings, the sun is slow to warm up the water by the afternoon. You will often find the bass feeding up on shad right before the approaching spawn.

A stick worm can be the trick to get that difficult bite this time of year while the bass are in transition. This style bait is versatile and gives anglers multiple rigging options. One of my personal favorites is a Ghoti, 5inch senko mold in light watermelon. I typically fish it Texas style, switching between weight and weightless for different action depending on the bite.

The basic design is a 5-inch worm from tip to tip tapering down at the bottom. Most tackle stores sell the stick worm in different sizes and colors varying between a 3inch-6inch and a ray of color schemes depending on the time of year and water clarity. Companies will modify the stick worm with a custom ring effect. They can vary from a slight ring effect in the center or a full set of rings in the core. Like any bait, both styles have a place and time for its success rate.

My preferred method for weightless rigging is a spinning rod. Stick worms can be skipped easily under low hanging branches and under docks. For weighted options, you can use either, as it becomes a matter of preference. I prefer a 7-foot medium action rod with a fast tip that allows you to feel the bite. To keep the fish from seeing my line, I use 10lb Seagar fluorocarbon line. It can be rigged on line as light as 4 pounds or as heavy as 12 pounds, depending on the way it is rigged and cover.

For the weightless option, make your cast and let it sink on a slack line. This allows the bait to dance as it flutters and quivers to the bottom. Watch your line carefully for it to jump or even start running off, when you see this, reel up the slack and set the hook. A sweeping hook set allows you to drive the hook home, but not rip it out of their mouth. A light bullet weight can be used, depending on the conditions, I prefer to go as light as possible to give the bait as slow a fall as possible. Most strikes will actually happen in the fall. Cast up shallow and let your bait fall to the bottom, then give it twitches to allow the bait to rise and fall again on a slack line.

The wacky rigged stick bait can be extremely deadly this time of year, as its slow fall and quivering action really drive the bass crazy. A spinning rod set up is the preferred method for this method. The hook is run through the center of the worm from side to side and left exposed. There are also hooks made with a wire guard to help when fishing around cover. The worm gives all the action you need. Just cast it out, up shallow, under overhanging limbs, under docks, and around cover. Let it sink on a slack line and when it hits bottom, make it hop up off the bottom and fall back. Watch your line and hang on.

A nail weight can be added to the smaller end to make the bait glide backward as it sinks, giving it a unique look. You can also use a Ned weight in the fat end when wacky rigged. This allows the bait to actually sink on one end with the hook being the pivoting point and giving the bait a very different look and action. You can also use a wacky jig head, that will allow the bait to fall faster but still have the same quivering action.

A drop shot can also be used to rig the straight worm. Here you can vary the length of the worm, dropping down to a 3-inch worm or even fishing the 5-inch version. It is all about presenting your bait to the bass. You can nose hook it, Texas rig it, or even wacky rig it. You can even add a blade to the bait to add flash.

Spring is a great time to throw a straight stick worm. Bass love an easy meal and the worm is just that. Grab yourself a couple packs and a couple packs of hooks and go enjoy a day of exciting action.- @Snookiefishing


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