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Help Me Get Better With The Texas Rigged Worm

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I've been a chuck and reel lure type angler for the better part of the year, and know that's probably held me back a good degree. Here lately I've been trying harder to become proficient with the Texas Rigged worm, and I've done fairly well the last couple days, even landed one nice 4 pounder. But I know I'm missing some fish, have been a bit late on a couple bites, and I'd bet I had a few take the bait without me even realizing it.

I did read an article here on the fishing the Texas rigged worm, and it was a great help, but I'm sure you folks have even more you could share with me. Should I look to improve my gear? Today I fished with my Pflueger Templar spinning reel which is mated to a Berkley 6'6 Medium Lightning Rod, and some 8# mono line. I'm sure I could do better, and I've sort of been wanting to pick up a new rod/reel lately anyway. Is the advantage of say a $100-200 rod pretty large? Quite a few of the bass I've caught lately, I didn't feel them pick up the worm at all, I just saw the line move. Thanks in advance. :)

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A more sensitive rod will defiantly help you detect those soft taps, I was blown away moving to a high quality rod, after that I would suggest looking into braid. I use braid for all my texas rigged worms, and although Im sure i miss some due to them being scared off by seeing the braid, I can defiantly feel the bite as well as set the hook solidly.

NGaHB

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If you're referring to weighted Texas rigs then I suggest you try a braided line such as power pro or suffix performance or suffix 832 on your current rod and reel. Braided line makes a huge difference in sensitivity when using contact baits such as Texas rigs and jigs.

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If you're referring to weighted Texas rigs then I suggest you try a braided line such as power pro or suffix performance or suffix 832 on your current rod and reel. Braided line makes a huge difference in sensitivity when using contact baits such as Texas rigs and jigs.

My thoughts as well. Before you spend two hundred or more dollars on a combo, spend a few bucks on braid. With braid you'll feel the "tick" of every pebble and blade of grass on the bottom. It will make a dramatic difference in feel. You might find the braid is all you need.

To eliminate the braid's visibility use a fluoro or mono leader. If you fish in or around rocks, you'll want a leader anyway, since braid parts about as soon as it hits a rock.

Here's a tip for cutting braid. The cutter on dental floss works like a charm. It will cut the braid as easy, if not easier than dental floss. Some fishermen glue them to the handle of a rod so they are always handy.

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Many anglers place their sense of feel in their rods & line but I think it all depends on whose hands the rod is in period.

My wife could not tell a bite any better with a Berkeley Cherrywood than she could with a GLX but the reason is not rod sensitivity. What was transmitted up the line & then down the rod to the hands was lost by the brain.

Now in my hands if that bass farts anywhere around my bait I'll know it ;)

The art of feeling a worm/jig bite is a fine combination of watching your line and feeling for unnatural sensations of what your lure shouldn’t feel like. Sometimes you will feel that classic “Tap”, sometimes you’ll only see line movement, sometimes your line will simply go slack, but sometimes there will only be a feeling of heaviness that is almost like your lure will not move. The bites where the bass moves after inhaling your lure are the easy ones to feel because there is line movement, the bites where the bass simply inhales your lure and just sits there are the hardest to feel. Feeling a worm/jig bite requires keeping a certain amount of tension on your line while at the same time keeping a certain amount of slackness in your line. To the average angler this makes no sense at all but the worm/jig angler it makes total sense.

Maintain contact with your lure at all times, allow the lure to free-fall unrestricted, but without letting slack form in the line; follow your lures down with your rod tip.

Pay close attention to the depth you're fishing, any sudden change in the amount of line you're using could mean you’ve been bit. For instance, if you're fishing 6 feet of water and the lure suddenly stops at the 3 depth, it's possible a bass has taken the lure. If you're fishing 3 feet of water and 6 feet of line sinks chances are good a bass is traveling with the lure. This is extremely true on the initial drop and no line movement maybe noticed.

What I’ll use to help my students is to take them out night fishing during a new moon!

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As usual, Catt nailed it.

Keep a finger on the line.

Know how the bait feels just sitting there.

If the bait feels any different, set the hook.

On at least two occassions I have casted a Senko and it never sank. Line just sat on the water. I thought the Senko may have landed on a tree stump and then remembered there were no tree stumps in the area. I set the hook and landed both bass.

May I suggest copying and pasting Catt's reply on a Word doucment and save it for future reference? It can be the start of your bass fishing library. ;)

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Thanks Catt! I saw this subject earlier but decided to save the time of posting a long detailed reply until you had the chance to chime in. Like many subjects, I can add very little.

In this case, that would be a lesson I heard many years ago from one of the touring pros of the time. His take on how to teach a beginning worm fisherman was for the angler to learn what the bait felt like when no bite occured. Anything different from that feeling required a hookset.

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I recently watched a Bassmaster University video titled “Denny Brauer on flipping and pitching”, in it Denny answers viewer questions and one question was “what does a jig bite feel like?” Denny’s answer was “I don’t know but I know what it doesn’t feel like!”, he went on to say he felt 100% confident that not a single bass wrapped it’s lips around his lure and he didn’t take a shot at it. His next commit was “observers in my boat might think I’m a complete idiot because I set hook 20 times but only landed 5 bass so the other 15 times I didn’t have a clue want was going on and they may be right but one thing for sure the other 15 times were not bass.

When in doubt, drop the rod, reel the slack, & set the hook! ;)

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I really like reading and watching Denny Brauer, he has taught me a ton on jig fishing.

I can't really add to what has already been said, but in due time with fishing t-rigs, jigs and even c-rigs, you'll get to understand what your bait is doing underwater and what it feels like to hit a rock, stump, clump of grass etc.

For me, I need to watch my line constantly and concentrate to the point where I can almost visualize what my lure is doing during the presentation. As soon as my concentration is brokened or I don't have the concentration needed, then the presentation won't any good and opportunity of a caught fish is gone.

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One way that has helped me a lot with Texas rigged worms is the way Doug Hannon holds his rod and retrieves them. Each time you raise the rod (no matter how little or how much) to move your bait forward, KEEP it in the position it's raised to, for a few more seconds, before lowering it to retrieve slack.

This keeps an optimal angle of the rod tip and maintains contact with your bait, allowing for a much more sensitive feel for what's happening down there. It has worked for me. :)

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I think a lot of people get stuck in a routine where they just hop a T-rig back to them, lift/drop/pause, lift/drop/pause, lift/drop/pause. Sometimes swimming a T-rig like it were a jig and grub or a bullhead hugging the bottom, or dragging it slow and steady like a football jig or a crawfish looking for a rock to burrow underneath, or using a drag/shake routine like a shakyhead worm is what works best that day. Figuring this out helped me catch some nice fish and get over the hump as a T-rig angler, because I wasn't a big fan of them when I first started fishing them.

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Quite a few of the bass I've caught lately, I didn't feel them pick up the worm at all, I just saw the line move. Thanks in advance. :)

That advice is given a lot here, "watch your line", sounds like you've been paying attention.

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Worm & jig fishing is a contact sport, I don´t mean your bait making contact, I mean you making and maintaning contact with the bait all the time. It´s a matter not preciselly about sensitivity but about feel. One of the great mistakes it paying too much attention to the gear, gear is only a part the rest is about you.

Let´s say you have your worm rigged, then make a cast, the moment the bait lands you have to watch your line as the bait sinks, you can see the bait dragging the line as it sinks, but if you don´t maintain contact with your bait as it sinks and a fish gets it ( the line changes direction ) on the fall and you are not paying attention you will loose that bite. Sometimes it´s difficult to see the line sinking, but how about the sink rate ? your bait was falling nicely at a certain pace and .... hey, wait a second, that bait should have reached the bottom already, well, if somebody got the bait in it´s mouth cuz it´s taking too long for the bait to hit to the bottom. You feel that something is not right.

Feel, is not about sensitivity, feel is about your guts telling you the bait is not behaving or doing what´s supposed to do when nobody has mouthed it. BTW, I learned to fish a worm more than 3 decades ago with a fiberglass rod.

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Great info guys ;)

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All of this advice from these other experienced anglers out here is great.One of the best worm fisherman I know when I asked him the question about a worm bite replied."something will feel out of place" as others have said here.It could stop before reaching the bottom or the cover you are fishing it could feel spongey like there just a tiny bit of something soft on the line he said to really get a feel you have to watch the line and know what the bait is doing at all times.Basically feel is something you will get with experience but when you're fishing for example on some laydowns work the bait over the limbs and branches letting it fall-note this will be what a tree feels like.fish rip rap work it down the rocks this is what rock will feel like sand bottom = this is what sand feels like.gravel,grass,all of these things have a feel to them too.This knowledge of the feeings of different things will "tune you in"and as you continue to fish you will get different bites.Another thing kindof related to feel my friend instructed me on to imagine what the worm is doing as you work it u can do this in a bath tub just put in water tie a t-rig to the line and move it in different ways.Then you will know how your bait looks to the fish"presentation is everything"as far as getting the bite in the first place.hope you catch a bunch.

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Like someone else noted on before. Don't keep doing the same motions. I find my self getting stuck just doing one type of retrieve and have to adjust what I'm doing. Make sure you mix it up until you find what the fish want.

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