Approaching Deep Water Smallmouths; Lengthy Post!

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Crestliner

Approaching Deep Water Smallmouths; Lengthy Post!

Post by Crestliner » Thu Mar 19, 2015 4:03 pm

Not sure how many of you have ever tried to fish a wacky-rigged Senko under a slip bobber before? I've been fishing this rig for many seasons now and I've got to tell you folks, it's a great way to present a Senko with a second rod while you are working the first with a drop shot, crank, tube or hard jerkbait. Keeps the action going!

This is how I do my rigging with this presentaion. It's difficult to put it into words, so I took a snapshot, which should help you get a better idea of what I'm talking about:



The bobber stops can be found at any sporting goods store - even Wal-Mart’s. They have the stop set-ups & small plastic beads in the package. You can find the cigar floats at Dicks; you can use all kinds of slip floats in this application, but after trial & error, I've pretty much settled on this one. It's about 4" long and the bright colors make it easy to see, even in a decent chop. This season I’ll be trying something new – the “Wing-Ding” float. Would make float change/removal much easier (if it works). Google it and you’ll see what I mean.

I've chosen Fireline Crystal (10# test), as my main line, because it floats on the surface of the water, between the float and your rod tip. This makes slack retrieval much easier, as well as hook-sets. This Fireline slides effortlessly through the float as well, which helps with this kind of presentation. And, for me, it's easy to see! I may try 6# or 8# test Crystal this season, but I’m just not sure how well the bobber stops will hold on such a fine line. We’ll see.

The glass bead under the float prevents the eye of the crane swivel from sticking in the bottom of the float. (There actually is a method behind my madness, believe it or not!) It also ads a little weight to help get your Senko down faster. If you prefer, you can use a large split shot or a small 1/8 oz. egg sinker, but I like as little weight between me and the fish as possible, which is an aid for those subtle takes. Patience is a great sinker and the Senko is pretty hefty unto itself.

Do NOT use a barrel swivel! You know....the kind that is used with those inexpensive "snap-swivels". Use a quality crane swivel or ball bearing style only. These turn much easier than the barrel types (with twisted wire eyes). With wacky rigging under a float, it does create some normal twisting, even if it isn’t apparent with braid as your main line. The Senko hanging below a bobber, has a tendency to turn....so you will need to avoid line twist, as much as possible. I really like to use the Spro PowerSwivels, size #8 or #10, but they are expensive and not easy to find everywhere.

You can use any hook you want; however, I would highly recommend you give this one shown a try. I've had excellent results with it over the years. If you go too small, the Senko gets twisting in the plastic and you could loose a big fish. When the bobber goes under, you just start reeling her in! No need for a hook set. You’ll very rarely ever loose one.

The leader between the hook & swivel is anything you want it to be. If I'm fishing fairly shallow in weedy/wooded conditions for LM, I'll beef it up to about 10# test, or more. It'll tend to be shorter in stained water with heavy cover as well - maybe only 2'. But for open, deep water SM/LM fishing, the 6# test cited above is about as good as it gets, in my opinion. My leader in this case is about 4' long. Just make sure it's fluorocarbon! Much more abrasion resistant than other leader materials; smallies especially grind their rough teeth on this bait. However, you will still have to re-tie after a couple of decent smallies take you for a ride! I use a snell knot with this hook, which works out well in keeping the hook point away from the Senko.

Now....one of the most important parts of this presentation. How far up the line do you set the bobber stop? This is what I do. I find bait on the structure I'm fishing. Then I attach an ice fishing depth finder (the lead weights with the alligator clips molded into them) to the hook. I lower this boatside until it hits bottom. I adjust the bobber stop so that the float is about 2' underwater. This will be correct, for having your Senko presented 2' ABOVE the bottom. Simple and effective. Remove the depth finder, slip on a Senko. Cast it a short distance from the boat. The float will lay flat, until the Senko is at the end of it's travel. Now the float will semi-stand up, bouncing about and imparting a rather dramatic action to your wacky rigged Senko. (I do not normally fish this rig out deep on calm days, but I suppose you could.) It won't be long before she goes under, I promise! Set your reel drag really light when putting the rod down, so that it doesn't go for a swim!

With two guys in the boat, one each with this rig and a second working the bottom (I like using the drop shot with this) or mid-water column casting with plugs or whatever, it's possible to have a "quad" on at one time! My fishing partner & I experience this several times a year Quite a hoot! Give it a whirl. You'll always keep one rod rigged this way, once you try it.

PS: I've caught LM, SM, Lakers and Salmon on this set-up, on the Quabbin. And, of course, there's no reason live bait can't be used this way - with an appropriate amount of weight to get it down. I only ask you one thing: please try to practice Catch, Photograph & Release - if possible. At the very least, use common sense and use "Selective Harvest" in your fishing - keep the smaller ones and release the big girls. Hope this clears up the floating Senko presentation for some of you folks. Enjoy! >/smile.gif" alt="smile" title="smile" height="15" width="15" />

brendanc
Posts: 2720
Joined: Thu May 03, 2001 4:00 pm

Approaching Deep Water Smallmouths; Lengthy Post!

Post by brendanc » Tue Apr 07, 2015 5:45 pm

That's a great post Crestliner... Lots of detailed information. It would make a great article, if you don't mind I'll post it as a featured member article?
Brendan C.

Crestliner

Approaching Deep Water Smallmouths; Lengthy Post!

Post by Crestliner » Fri Apr 17, 2015 12:14 pm

Thanks guys. And yes Brendan, I have no objection. The Quabbin will be opening up by the end of this month. Hopefully I will be posting some decent catches using this rigging and the drop shot. >/smile.gif" alt="smile" title="smile" height="15" width="15" />

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