How To Rig & Fish A Stick Bait Worm For Bass – Backcountry Cariboo

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Fishing a stick style bait such as a Senko or Trick Stick is one of the most tried and true ways to catch a lot of bass. There are a number of different colors and brands to pick from and there are a bunch of different ways you can rig them up. In this post, I’m going to be talking about my favorite colors, how to rig a stick bait worm, and then how to actually fish them.

The good thing about these baits is that they’re super simple to fish and will work all year round. You can use them in clean water, you can use them in dirty water, but the best time to use them is when the bite is slow. They’re a slow-moving bait that will be an easy meal, and that’s why they’re so effective.

My Favorite Style

There are a number of different shapes and sizes out there when it comes to stick baits worms, but the good news is that all of them will work. I’ve tried a number of different brands, sizes, colors, and shapes, and I’ve had luck with almost all of them.

Some of the more unique worms are the ones with a paddle tail or ribbon tail. These definitely don’t look like real life worms but the fish don’t seem to care. I prefer the more natural-looking worms and that’s what we’ll be talking about here.

Ribbon Tail Worm

Another option is the thinner and longer worms such as the BioSpawn PlasmaTail. This type of worm is pretty thin and it has different thicknesses throughout the worm. It also has a floating tail which makes it a great option for drop shotting. That being said, it’s still not my favorite option.

PlasmaTail Worm

My favorite type of stick bait worm is the classic Senko style (below) and is what we’ll be talking about. I like this bait because it’s the most natural-looking and it can be rigged a number of ways. You can fish it as is or you could even cut it in half. My favorite length would have to be the 5 inches because it catches both size and numbers. Here it is on Amazon.

Best Stick Bait Worm

Stick Bait Color For Bass

Like I was saying before, pretty much all of the colors work well, but some of them are designed for clear water while others are designed for muddy water. I don’t like carrying around too much gear and that’s why I try to find something that’s consistent across the board.

My favorite stick bait color for bass would have to be green pumpkin. That’s the picture above. It’s dark green with black dots on it. You can get the chartreuse colored tip or you can get it plain. I haven’t really noticed that much of a difference.

The reason I like green pumpkin is that it works well in all water conditions. It’s a natural color that the fish are already used to seeing. I also find that this color works well on all types of soft plastic baits (grubs, worms, crawfish, etc).

How Do You Rig A Stick Bait?

There are a number of ways you can rig these baits and as long as you have a worm and a hook, you should be able to get something to bite. That being said, there are really only two different ways I like to rig these baits. Here they are.

Rig 1: Wacky Rig.

Wacky Rig Worm

This is one of the most basic ways to fish a stick bait worm, but that doesn’t take away from its effectiveness. All you’re going to need for this setup is your worm and a 1/0 finesse wide gap hook. Here’s an option on Amazon. It has a weed guard on it that’ll prevent it from getting snagged. All you have to do is take your hook and put it through the sides of the smooth area (about 1/3 of the way). If you want to add some weight, you can use an o-ring weight and put the hook between the weight and the worm.

Rig 2: Texas Rig.

Stick Bait Worm Texas Rig

This is one of the most trusted rigs for catching bass, but it does require some different tackle. You’re going to need your worm, a 1/8 oz bullet weight, and a 3/0 offset worm hook (my favorite on Amazon). The first step is to slide the bullet weight onto your line (point towards the reel) and attach your hook using your favorite knot.

Stick Bait Worm Texas Rig

You’ll then want to take your hook and put it through the face of the worm. When it reaches the bend in the hook, work the hook out the bottom of the worm (the slot is the top). Slide the hook through the worm until the eye of the hook reaches the face. Spin the hook and push the tip through the worm and out the top. The hook should be in that little slot.

Stick Bait Worm Texas Rig

How Do You Fish A Stick Bait?

The way you’ll want to fish a worm is near the bottom of the water column. Your worm will have a good amount of action already so you don’t need to do a whole lot. You’re going to get 90% of your bites when the worm is naturally falling. Don’t work it too hard or you could detour the fish.

Method 1: Wacky Rig. You’re first going to want to pick the spot you think the bass is at (ledge, tree, grass bed, etc). You’ll then want to cast 5-10 yards past that point and let the worm sink all the way to the bottom. Let it sit there for a few seconds because this is when you’ll likely get a bite. You can then raise your rod tip a few feet, let it sink back down, and reel in the slack. Repeat this until you’ve brought it back to the shore/boat. You can also twitch your rod one or two times when you raise it.

Method 2: Texas Rig 1. This is the method you’ll want to use when the bite is really slow. Again, you’ll want to locate the spot you want to cast and start 5-10 yards past that. Let the worm sink down to the bottom and leave it there for a few seconds. This is when you’ll get the majority of your bites. What you’ll then want to do is start dragging the worm along the bottom. Simply drag the worm a few feet, reel in the slack, let it sit there a few seconds, and repeat.

Method 3: Texas Rig 2. This is the method you’ll want to use when the bite is good. Locate the spot you want to target and cast 5-10 yards past that point. Let the worm sink down to the bottom and let it sit there for a few seconds. What you’re going to be doing here is bouncing the worm off the bottom. All you have to do is lift your rod up and down a few times, reel in the slack, and let the worm sit there for a few seconds.

Additional Tips

Use braid. This is something I do for 90% of my setups but there are still a lot of people who don’t use braid. It’s especially important with bait like this because you need to be able to feel as soon as the fish bites the hook. Braid has no stretch so it’s a lot more sensitive than fluoro and mono. Here’s what I use.

Keep your line tight. It can sometimes take a while to actually feel the bite because you’re lifting and lowering the worm. If you have slack in your line and a fish bites the hook, you might feel it 5 seconds later, and by that time, the fish has swallowed the worm. The hook will be too far in the mouth and the fish probably won’t make it. You need to feel that bite right away and set the hook.

Be patient. A lot of people think they need to help the worm out by twitching the rod like a madman, but that’s actually going to hurt your chances. Worms aren’t going to have that much action as they float through the water, so why would you do it to yours? You’ll get 90% of your bites as the worm is falling naturally. Be patient and fish it like an actual worm.

Let me know your thoughts and any questions you have. Like this article? Feel free to give it a share!

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