You have heard me a few times mention I am a bank beater, well thats not always true. I go where the fish are, or where they think the are, but if I am fishing more than shallow you can almost bet that I’ll have a Carolina rig in my hand. This is where I reach my downfall. If I catch one decent fish on my Carolina rig, its game over (Good and Bad) for a few different reason. If I’m Carolina Riggin in deep water you can bet your bite will stay true for a decent amount of time unless your in a tidal situation and as I always say, that’s a whole other conversation for later. If I am semi-shallow then you are at the mercy of the changing conditions that affect the shallow waters and yes again we will touch on that down the road. The great thing about a Carolina Rig is you can also cover a decent amount of water in a short period of time. Its always best to be slower, but you can surely pick up your pace until you find that zone. The good here is its one of my favorite ways to fish deep, the bad is once I catch that fish, I usually loose all my senses of reality and don’t pay attention to what else is working when my Carolina rig is failing (a few of my best buddies can attest to that) So how am I setting up my rig, here we go.
I always toss my rig on a bait caster (I know a few who don’t) and I like to throw a heavier bail line (usually 20lb test) than my leader which is usually fluorocarbon. I do that for two reason. The fluorocarbon is almost invisible to see in the water and I use that lighter line just in case I get hung up , this will save me the time if I have too break it off, I then don’t have to re-tie my whole rig. The egg sinker is key to get you to the bottom and next of course is the bead and I can tell you glass is key here, not a big fan of a plastic bead. The glass bead just adds that extra clacking noise that seems to add the extra piece to the puzzle of getting that added bite and it protects the knot to the swivel (optional piece here is to double up the beads on top to give that extra clacking noise). Next of course is the swivel, I like a barrel swivel here of good strength and of course use a good knot, (Palomar) so you don’t create a weak link. Next is that fluorocarbon leader and this will vary in size, depending on vegetation or just where those bass are located. A shorter leader if they are closer to the bottom, a longer one if they are suspended or sitting atop the vegetation. We finally cap it off with a good lazer sharp hook in the 3/0-4/0 range and I sometimes even role with a 5/0. So we have the rig all set up what do I do now? Its pretty simple, we cast it out and drag it back. We drag it along slowly on the bottom, feeling every rock and log along the way. When I feel that definitive log or rock, I’ll pause, then I generally lift my rod up to basically pick it up and over the object so I don’t get hung up. Also at that point once on the other side, I make sure I give it a good pause, as in generally that bass is hanging on either side of the structure waiting to ambush that lizard, crawfish or worm that you have tied on. With Carolina Riggin on my mind, I’m the Bass Dude!
Tightlines My Friends!!