Well, the August “dulldrums” are here and it’s so hot you could cook a 2-inch thick steak on the deck of your boat, lay the potatoes out to bake themselves and top it all off with the egg you fried on top of the motor.
Because we have those extremely hot, blue bird-clear skies, and light to moderate breezes, you know it’s time to just sit back and throw something really SLOW.
I want to talk about the floating worms and regular worms, because they can be crawled across the bottom and hopefully your weight — if you’re using one — will hit a bass in the head and make her mad enough to hit the worm that’s behind it.
I want to talk also a bit about rigging the worms for this time of year.
I’m sure you all know the difference between a floating worm and a regular worm, as far as which is which, so I won’t bore you with those details. However, when you get them in the water, there is a world of difference in what they do and how they perform.
There are only a few so-called floating worms out there, whereas there are thousands of the other kind. It’s simple — one floats and the other sinks. Each have their advantages.
This time of the year, there are really only two baits you should be throwing: One is a worm and the other is a worm. Yes, you may catch one or two early in the morning on a top water and, yes, you may catch one or two on a spinner bait from the time the sun tops the trees till about an hour later, but after that it’s deep-down fishing. That’s where the plastic worms excel.
You all know the Texas Rig and the Carolina Rig, now I’m going to teach you the Howard Rig.
Take the worm hook of choice, for the size worm you’re throwing, and tie it on to your line just as you always do. Notice I didn’t say anything about putting a slip sinker, or a ball weight, or a slider weight or anything else on your line; just the line and the hook.
Read your graph and determine where the fish are located. If they are 3 feet off the bottom, put your 1/16-ounce pinch weight 3 feet from the end of the line and, viola — you rigged.
Cast it out and let it slowly sink to the bottom. Make sure you maintain contact with your bait as it sinks.
If you don’t, you might also lose that nice rod and reel you’re throwing as a big old bass grabs that sinking worm and heads south.
Now here is where the difference between a floating worm and a regular worm comes into play.
Remember, we said the fish were suspended about 3 feet from the bottom, so if you put on a regular worm the weight’s going to slowly sink it to the bottom — even if you have it pinched at 3 feet.
If it’s a floating worm, when the weight hits the bottom, what’s going to happen? You’re right — it’s going to float at 3 feet above the weight. So work your rod tip and make that floater dance for the fishes.
Now you’re slobbering at the mouth and wondering why you didn’t think of that and, where in the heck can I get those floating worms?
Well, Berkley and Zoom are about the only ones you can find, to my knowledge. If there are others, please let me know because I want some.
The Berkley Gulp Fat Floating Trout Worm comes in 17 colors, all bright and sparkly. The 6-inch Nightcrawler comes only in natural and the 4-inch Steelhead comes only in pink. The Zoom Trick worm 6-inch comes in 22 colors.
Well, anyway, when I head to the lake this time of year, there are six rods laying on the front deck.
One has a frog, one has a Spook or Pop-R, and one has a buzzbait — the other three are rigged with the three types of rigs we discussed: Texas, Carolina and Howard.
So go get your steak, eggs and bakin’ potatoes and meet me on the water. I’ll be the one wearing the big-brimmed hat and a soaking wet long-sleeve shirt, standing in the front of my Skeeter wondering why we are out here doing this.
Oh, by the way — do you know anyone that has a reflective, flat umbrella? I’m looking for one to mount on my pro-pole to give me a little shade while I cook. Come on out — who knows, you may be the one to catch a big’un. And remember, “mis-o-ri loves company!”
Jasper Johnson is retired from the U.S. Army and is the Copperas Cove Bass Club secretary. To contact him about the club or for any questions, call 318-218-0358 or email Hook_up@yahoo.com.