The Ultimate Guide to Wacky Rigged Worms

As anglers strive to catch more fish, there’s need to use different tricks and baits. It’s no surprise that wacky rigged worms have become popular at generating strikes. However, despite their shimmery look and strange looks, it will take time for you to learn how to get bites using a wacky rig.

What is Wacky Rigging?

Wacky rigging is a tactic used in bass fishing. The tactic works well when you need a slow presentation to catch a slow bite.  It’s an excellent rig for your friends and family who would like to know more about bass fishing.

Wacky rig or wacky rigging is how you hook the soft plastic when fishing for bass. Soft plastic worms are used with the rig.  The phrase wacky rigged worms it means the hook sits in the middle of the worm. With this setup, the plastic has a smooth movement through the water.

You’ll notice that baitfish move their head and tail from one side to the other. Wacky worm rig mimics the movement your bait makes.  The tactic is what entices bass to bite when your rig your bait.

However, this tactic doesn’t work efficiently for everyone. You might use a rubber ring, but this makes it difficult to achieve a 90-degree hook which leads to a low hookup percentage.

wacky rigged worms

Ways to Fish a Wacky Rig

You can use different techniques to fish a wacky worm.  If you’re struggling with bass fishing, here are some ways that will help you get the bait.

Using a Drop Shot Rig

Nose hooking might sound like an excellent way to catch bait; nothing beats wacky rigged worms. The rig gives the bait a wobbling action, something that can’t be done using a nose hook.  The technique works well when the bass is deep in water, and you need to get to them. You’ll also find this method excellent if the bass are tight-lipped and you need to get a bite.

If you can't make it to the bait shop before your next trip, you can usually find this in an outdoor subscription box such as Lucky Tackle Box.

Including a Carolina Rig

Wacky rigging on a Carolina rig gets the bait down to the bottom. Both the ends of the worm move sideways as the rig is pulled along.  With this setup, you might collect a lot of grass and vegetation as you have an exposed hook in the middle of the worm.  However, this can be fixed by using weedless hooks at the end of the rig.

Rigging With a Nail Weight

Using a nail weight is a popular tactic. You’ll need a weightless rig and some nail weight in the worm’s head. The action keeps the worm’s head and tail wobbling. However, the weight on the head makes the nose drop to the bottom.

The worm stands up on a tight line and wobbles across the bottom as you go deeper. This gives the impression of something feeding along the bottom, which attracts your bait.  The only downside to this method is that it only works for water less than 15 feet deep.

Rigging Using a Weighted Hook

Using a weighted hook is another great way to get the bait down faster. Since the hook has weight, the worm sinks quicker creating a wobbling action. The bait is attracted to the increased attention, and it’s the best way to catch bass.

Also, this method makes it possible to achieve the mid-depth zone which can be difficult to reach with a weightless rig or by using the drop shot method.

Weightless Wacky Rigging

Weightless wacky rigging works best with large stick style baits.  You don’t have to be near the casts as they are heavy enough.  Furthermore, you get a bite as the slow wobbling action falls on the rig.  A wacky rigging tool and O-ring, when attached at the middle of your bait, is a trick to get the bait quickly.  There are different brands of wacky rigged worms.

They are similar in shape but have different salt content.  Heavy salted worms sink faster than those with less salt. You can use both depending on the preferred depth.

Mistakes to Avoid While Fishing a Wacky Rig

Going to fish can be exciting and fun. In the process, you could end up making some errors that could cost you your time and bait. Here are a couple of mistakes to avoid when using a rig.

Worrying About Colors

You’ve probably been in a situation where you bring multiple colors of the same worm.  The truth is that no color outperforms the other.  When the conditions are right, the bass will get the hook. But, specific colors may work for some depths of water. For example, green pumpkin works well for lightly stained water while watermelon red attracts the bait as it exudes an extra flash when it’s sunny.  Two or three colors are enough to catch plenty of basses.

Taking Too Much Time in the Water

There’s an assumption that you should fish slowly to attract bass. However, a slow but quick method is what works best.  You need a target oriented approach such that you hit the right spots at a fast pace on the initial fall.  Don’t make the mistake of wasting your time on a bunch of casts when you could move on and find another excellent spot.

Putting Too Much Action

Many anglers assume that too much action attracts bait. Unfortunately, this only makes it impossible to get a bite. Wacky rigged worms have an intrinsic effect on their own.  You won’t need lots of rod movements to increase the number of bites.

Using a Rod Tip to Detect Bites

Although a rod tip may work sometimes, you may end up missing lots of quality bites. The bites happen when the rig falls on the slack line. The fish could have bait in its mouth for seconds if you depend on the fish to move the rod.  With this, the fish could swallow your hook or wrap the line around a cover.

It’s essential to watch the line at any time to avoid these scenarios. Rig bites are exemplified by lateral movement or a fast line jump in the slack line.  Sideway movements indicate big bass while quick jump shows smaller bass.


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