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papajoe222

C-Rig for COLD Water

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So how many of you still use a C-Rig as a search tool just after ice-out? I picked up my first bass (plural) today C-rigging a Havoc Grass Pig Jr. The bait is one I've never tried on the business end before, but the rig itself has been an early spring staple of mine for years.

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I have but I hate fishing a C-rig so much that I'd almost rather stay home than fish one. It works so well for crawling a bait along the bottom slowly while keeping the actual bait up out of the snot that grows everywhere early in the year here. 

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Down here, ice goes in your glass.  We don't have ice out, lol.

 

However, I have never thrown a c rig, got to try it.  The bottom is mucky.  I have been throwing weightless worms

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   Yesterday I wanted to try out my new soft plastics. I tried:

Zoom super fluke, Baby Bass

Zoom super fluke, Shad

Berkley Powerbait minnow

6" Creme worm, black and blue

10" Anaconda, Red Shad

10" Anaconda, green pumpkin

Betts jig, white and black

   Nothing. Went to:

various spinnerbaits

various spinners

Rapala Husky Jerk

Cordell Super Spot, 1/4 oz, citrus shad

    Nothing.

    Decided they weren't gonnas bite. Put on a 3/4 oz. Devl-Dog spoon, White Ghost.

    BINGO! First bass of the season. (Not first bass of the year, just first bass of the season.)

 

   I'm sure things will change later on in the year. They always do. I'm sure that soft plastic will get fish for me, whether rigged Carolina, Texas, nose-hooked, weightless or weighted.

   And I'm sure that I'm crazy, and that I don't know how to fish, especially in early water.

 

   That's OK. You use whatever your little ol' heart desires. I'm using my spoons.  :happy-112:   jj

  

 

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When the smallies are still deep after ice out, your method and bait work well.

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C-rig by definition is dragging a heavy egg sinker on the bottom with a long leader 3' to 4' behind the sinker with a soft plastic of some type. Good rig for less active bass near the bottom. Pre spawners are usually more aggressive feeders where jigs that represent crawdads and faster moving lures that represent baitfis work good. 

Tom

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Despite popular belief a C-rig does not require a heavy sinker!

 

Despite popular belief a C-rig is very effective in shallow water!

 

C-rigged Liz-zards are extremely effective on early pre-spawn bass!

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C-rig fishing is probably my least favorite fishing.  That lead weight seems to pick up everything loose on the bottom of the lake.

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3 hours ago, Catt said:

Despite popular belief a C-rig does not require a heavy sinker! 

  

Despite popular belief a C-rig is very effective in shallow water! 

 

C-rigged Liz-zards are extremely effective on early pre-spawn bass! 

   I think the OP would agree with you WHOLEHEARTEDLY! But for 3 years running, my first bass has been on a spoon run slow in the shallows. And this in the icy waters immediately after turnover, not 2 weeks later. 2 weeks later is a whole 'nother world.

   I've never - and I mean never - gotten a fish of any kind on soft plastics of any kind whatsoever in that frigid water after ice out. And the OP is in an area with waters as cold as or colder than mine.

   I came to this site to learn, and to do better, and do things differently.  So I ask you .... why do you, @Catt, and the OP (and others) have such good luck with soft plastics at ice out and I have zero luck?   Nil.   Zip.  Nada.  Carolina rigged or otherwise.

   I made a commitment to do a lot more soft plastics this year, and I think that commitment starts right here. Obviously, I'm doing something wrong, but I don't know what it is.  ☹️    jj

  

  

  

 

 

 

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I tried rigging heavy weight, light weight and mojo rigging and I hate it. I just don't have the feel of the bait like I do with a t-rig or jig.

 

Mojo rig is probably as close as I can get to getting any feel for the bait.

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I've used a Carolina Rig as a co in the last 2 Costas in Champlain.  Both during the spawn.  Finished 12 and 16th respectively.  You can use that rig to fish any way you want.  Bed Fish, deep drag, weed lines with a swimbait, shallow clear water, hard bottom soft bottom doesn't make a difference.  Figure out what set up works best for your situation.

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9 minutes ago, jimmyjoe said:

I came to this site to learn, and to do better, and do things differently.  So I ask you .... why do you,@Catt, and the OP (and others) have such good luck with soft plastics at ice out and I have zero luck?   Nil.   Zip.  Nada.  Carolina rigged or otherwise.

 

I can not speak for @papajoe222 or ice out.

 

I live down on the Louisiana Gulf Coast where ice goes in your tea not on the ground.

 

Even during our coldest winters a slow dragged C-rig is very productive. We have two groups of anglers, those who throw C-rigs year round & those who throw T-rigs year round.

 

As to why plastics aren't producing for you could be the body of water or operator error.

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I use the slip shot or finesse C-rig year around, rarely use the classic heavy weight egg sinker C-rig.  Pre spawn I am fishing jigs and other types of lures until I know the spawn is on or it's the later stages then bottom dragging becomes a good presentation.

Tom

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Caught bass few days ago @Catt on a junebug lizard already. South Ga spawn is on!!

 

I do like @WRB suggested put a small split shot 1.5ft up and work a lizard gingerly through shallows and around beds. So technically it's a c-rig

 

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16 hours ago, Catt said:

Despite popular belief a C-rig does not require a heavy sinker!

 

Despite popular belief a C-rig is very effective in shallow water!

 

C-rigged Liz-zards are extremely effective on early pre-spawn bass!

Yes. I don’t listen to anyone on this method. I fish my C-Rigs as light as I have to, as shallow as I have to and with as short a leader as I have to. This is by far my second most productive method besides cranks. Maybe more productive. A 10-12” C-Rig on a light weight with a boyant bait catches fish.

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On 3/24/2019 at 8:59 PM, WRB said:

C-rig by definition is dragging a heavy egg sinker on the bottom with a long leader 3' to 4' behind the sinker with a soft plastic of some type. Good rig for less active bass near the bottom. 

3 to 4 feet 😱 I’ve done best with 4 - 18”

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14 hours ago, jimmyjoe said:

 

   I made a commitment to do a lot more soft plastics this year, and I think that commitment starts right here. Obviously, I'm doing something wrong, but I don't know what it is.  ☹️    jj 

  

  

  

 

 

 

Using soft plastics in very cold waters can be intimidating, mainly because of preconceived expectations. That goes for any presentation under tough conditions. I, for the life of me, can not catch early season LM on jerk baits. I still have a rod dedicated to just that, but after an hour or so with nothing to show, I switch to something I have confidence in and will continue throwing that for three or four hours.  Case in point, the fish I caught the other day.  I was three hours into fishing before I got my first bite (blade bait), no hook-up. Fifteen minutes later I switch to a confidence presentation and was rewarded after thirty minutes. It took two hours more to catch the other two.

Next time you're catching on that spoon, switch to a soft plastic. That's one way to prove to yourself that they are productive after ice-out.

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22 minutes ago, papajoe222 said:

Next time you're catching on that spoon, switch to a soft plastic. That's one way to prove to yourself that they are productive after ice-out. 

   I'll try that. But I'll have to hurry; waters are warming quickly.  Thnx.   jj

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15 hours ago, CrankFate said:

3 to 4 feet 😱 I’ve done best with 4 - 18”

4"-18" is good for drop shot rigs, 12"-24" for finesse C-rigs (slip shot) 3'-4' is commonly used for traditional Carolina rigs with swivel, beads and leader using longer rods to effectively cast it.

4" C-rig you might as well be using Florida rig ( pegged weight ) or Texas rig with sliding bullet weight IMO.

Cold water needs to be defined 40-50 degrees should workforce most BR members, where I fish it's 50-55 degrees, little warmer.

Tom

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The only thing "traditional" about fishing is ya can do it your way!

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