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Heavy Weed Fishing Help

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I just started fishing heavy weeds for largemouth and I'm using a bullet weighted Texas rig. I think I'm doing pretty good with 1 caught bass and 3 other strikes in about an hour. The questions I have is, is it ok if my worm goes over the pads? and if I feel some thumps on my line should I set the hook right away? I just think those are the stems of the pads and my weight reconnecting with my worm.

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Is it ok?

 

Yelp

 

Don’t be afraid to snake your worm across the grass like you would a frog ;)

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Try pegging your weight. You'll be able to distinguish bites better.

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Sounds like you are doing good with it!! Keep it up!

 

Although I have never tried pulling a worm across the top of a mat, I would never discount it until I have tried it. You never know what will work!

 

That being said, I like to punch through the mat to get to the ones hiding under it if they are not hitting the frog I skip across it first. If you are wanting the worm to drop into the mat, but are having trouble, then increase the weight on your T-rig. Make sure you have a stout rod when punching though. You will be pulling LOTS of weeds back with the fish. 

 

As far as feeling the thumps...swing away!!!! Hook sets are free!! The more you fish that way, the easier it will become to tell the difference between the thump of weight hitting weeds & the tap of a bass. I still swing at taps under mats all the time. Some are bass, some are not.

 

Good luck!!

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Sounds like you are doing good with it!! Keep it up!

 

Although I have never tried pulling a worm across the top of a mat, I would never discount it until I have tried it. You never know what will work!

 

That being said, I like to punch through the mat to get to the ones hiding under it if they are not hitting the frog I skip across it first. If you are wanting the worm to drop into the mat, but are having trouble, then increase the weight on your T-rig. Make sure you have a stout rod when punching though. You will be pulling LOTS of weeds back with the fish. 

 

As far as feeling the thumps...swing away!!!! Hook sets are free!! The more you fish that way, the easier it will become to tell the difference between the thump of weight hitting weeds & the tap of a bass. I still swing at taps under mats all the time. Some are bass, some are not.

 

Good luck!!

 

I agree, good advice!

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Is it ok?

 

Yelp

 

Don’t be afraid to snake your worm across the grass like you would a frog ;)

^^ If you want bass advice, this is the man to get it from. ^^

Running on the tops of pads is great, I don't always keep my eyes open,  I may close them close and wait to feel the fish on the rod, a visual can lead to a premature hookset.  Simply because people can get too excited when they see a bigger fish.  One of the beauties of night fishing is that it's mostly feel.

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As posted above, one of the best river and lake techniques is to throw your Zoom trick worm, Senko or YUM Dinger over the pads and bring it back to you on top of the pads. You can expand your arsenal buy adding weedless rigged toads (rubber frogs), Rage Tail Anacondas weightless or with a small pegged bullet weight and just about any other plastic you want.

 

You also do as stated and either "peg" your weight or fish the plastic weedless using a weedless hook or a Texas style hook with the barb under the plastic's skin.

 

If you have a weighted plastic you can drop it any "holes in the grass" as you pass by. A half to a full ounce can be used to punch the pads.

 

When punching the pads or falling into a hold, let the bait drop to the bottom and sit for about 5 seconds then bounce it up and down with your rod tip, let I sit for another few seconds, pull it out and start all over again.

 

Many years ago while fishing on the Nottoway River in Virginia I was throwing a green pumpkin unweighted Zoom trick worm on spinning gear over pads. At the last pad sticking out of the bunch of pads and right before I was ready to pull the bait up and throw it again, a bass jumps totally out of the water and comes straight down on the worm and pad.

 

I don't know who was more surprised? Me or the bass when I set the hook.

 

If you see any pads move behind your bait then a bass is tracking it. Slow down a little but continue its path back to you and shake the worm while on a few pads to entice the bass to eat it. If he does not attack the bait do it all over again in the same spot.

 

Try a weedless Wacky rigged Senko or Dinger (or another favorite stick bait) and a weedless wacky rigged Zoom trick worm (colors of your choice) and have some fun. 

 

You may want to invest in some Eagle Claw, Mustad or Gammy weedless hooks.

 

And a few more tips about pads:

1.  Fish the points the pads make. Look for the pad points and also any seclude pads by themselves.

2.  Fish any creeks, wood, stickups and anything else "out of normal" in and around the pads. NEVER EVER PASS UP A GOOD PIECE OF WOOD OR A STICK UP. Throw to it a number of times and from different angles.

3.  If you can maneuver your boat or fish from the bank hit the area where the pads stop and the shore begins. Boaters don't usually get to these places often and that 20 or 30 feet of water between the bank and the pads can hold bass and is not fished that often.

4.  Throw your spinnerbait, crankbait and lipless crankbait parallel to the pads. You may want to add a trailer hook to the spinnerbait but it may get snagged too often.

5.  Don't be bashful and throw a Cavitron parallel to the pads.

6.  In high water over the pads throw your spinnerbaits and Cavitrons and a Spook or popper.

7.  Throw a popper between the pads as stated above and all around the outside of the pads.

8.  Throw a wacky rigged Senko, Dinger or other stick baits plus any other plastics between the pads and in any openings you can find.

9.  Chatterbait. Don't forget your Chatterbait. Parallel to the pads.

10. Jig and pig. Throw your jig and pig around and into the pads and over the foliage.

11. Heavy weighted plastic without many appendages into and under the pads.

12. Always use MegaStrike on all pad baits to help them slide over and between and into the pads.

13. Consider tying your braid directly to your hooks and use the same size mono as a backing on you reels to stop the braid from slipping.

14. Use a 7-foot or longer heavy or medium heavy fast action tip rod to set the hook.

15. Go with a 7:1 ratio reel to pull those suckers out of the pads when they decide to go deep.

16. Don't be afraid to stick your arm in the water to rescue a hooked bass in the pads. Alligators and moccasins are only down south unless those awful Ohio State people have put them in the waters you fish to deliberately mess you up.

17.  If you have the time, take your boat's paddle and make a few holes in the pads in the morning and then come back to them in the afternoon or the next day and fish the holes you have made. The bass will find the openings and sit there waiting for your bait.

 

Your mission is to find the pad pattern for the day.

 

If you have bright skies the bass will go into and under the pads. The small baitfish and crawfish will also hide in the pads.

 

A word of caution. Bring more than one of each bait with you as you will get hung up and lose them.

 

Make sure that drag is tight.

 

Try not to let your shadow fall on the pads.

 

Bring your needle nose pliers (bet some of you guys have never read where I have posted this suggestion).

 

Wear dark clothes so they cannot see your bright colors.

 

Be very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very quiet. Turn off the boat's engine about 100 yards out and coast or use your trolling motor to hit the pads.  Keep trolling motor to a minimum and when you use it put it on the 1 or 2 setting. Don't drop anything on the boat's floor. Have your baits, scissors, pliers and your drink near you.

 

If you are on the bank walk at least 50 feet from the bank when moving around and start your casts about 10 feet from the bank.

 

Hit the water as much as you can before the 11 months of winter hit Michigan.

 

Good luck and be sure to let us know how you do.

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Thanks for the help! I just gotta fill up my tank on the boat and I'll be on my way to try these things out.

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I fish a lot of heavy weeds primarily with frogs but also use a large weightless dinger to skitter across the top and drop in the holes in the weeds. DEADLY! For a rod I use a 7 foot Fenwick Musky rod and 50 braid. It casts a mile and has the backbone to drag them out of it.

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I just started fishing heavy weeds for largemouth and I'm using a bullet weighted Texas rig. I think I'm doing pretty good with 1 caught bass and 3 other strikes in about an hour. The questions I have is, is it ok if my worm goes over the pads? and if I feel some thumps on my line should I set the hook right away? I just think those are the stems of the pads and my weight reconnecting with my worm.

 

 

Sounds like you are doing good with it!! Keep it up!

 

Although I have never tried pulling a worm across the top of a mat, I would never discount it until I have tried it. You never know what will work!

 

That being said, I like to punch through the mat to get to the ones hiding under it if they are not hitting the frog I skip across it first. If you are wanting the worm to drop into the mat, but are having trouble, then increase the weight on your T-rig. Make sure you have a stout rod when punching though. You will be pulling LOTS of weeds back with the fish. 

 

As far as feeling the thumps...swing away!!!! Hook sets are free!! The more you fish that way, the easier it will become to tell the difference between the thump of weight hitting weeds & the tap of a bass. I still swing at taps under mats all the time. Some are bass, some are not.

 

Good luck!!

 

I think its a good tactic and a high hook-up ratio one at that.

 

Worked for me today just got back and used a Palm Tree dragged across mats and this guy hit through the stuff.

Just dragging might be alright I would suggest giving little hops to create a bit more disturbance

 

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When I first started bass fishing in the late spring we were doing really good(me and my two sons). Not thinking about the weeds I figured that bass fishing was over till the fall when the weeds die. Then i went to the BPS and CABELAS website and searched for weedless lures. There's plenty of weedless lures too.

Like Sam said above too.

I cast my topwater and cranks near the weedlines and the pads to draw the bass out. This way we don't spook them. I cast past the pads and work my lure close to them. I also use floating plastics on top of the weeds too. With submerged weeds I use the shallow floating crankbaits as well as poppers too.I use the cranks that have a rattle in them. I move them slowly and stop to twitch them over the weed pockets.

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I went out for 2 hours today, I did one hour with a worm and one with a swimbait. I got a strike with the worm, when I dragged it over the pad, but I caught one bass with the swim bait. I tried out all the tips I received and I think they'd all work in their own situations, but the fishing up here has been really bad lately. Thanks for the help guys!

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I set my hook on everything, rocks, weeds, fish, trees. Sure sometimes I get snagged, and most of the time its nothing there, but I can promise I won't ever miss a fish because I thought a strike was just the bottom. 

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