Texas Rigged Plastics
Texas rigging lures such as plastic lizards and worms give an angler the capability of delivering the lure into places where bass lay in wait to ambush their prey. Matted vegetation, lily pads, patches of water weeds that fail to reach the surface, and sunken brush piles are prime bass hiding spots. However, most lures cannot penetrate these with the problem being they snag when someone attempts to pull them through. To get around this obstacle bass experts take plastic baits and arrange them on an offset worm hook to make them "weed proof." The sharp point of the hook penetrates the lure at its thickest end and then comes out through the side of the worm no more than 1/2-inch from the spot it first went in. After the angler brings the worm up tight to the eye of the hook, she turns the hook's point to face the worm, which now dangles down connected at its top to the hook. Pushing the point into the body makes the lure unable to grab hold of any structures in its way when the angler reels it in. A worm weight goes on the line before the angler ties on the worm hook. A toothpick stuck through the worm weight keeps the weight from slipping back and forth on the line when the angler casts this presentation out. The fisherman will just break off the end sticking out of the weight and fish with this set-up.
Fishing with topwater lures during that time of day that gives them the best chance to appear real to a bass looking up is important. Right before nightfall, just after the sun comes up, and on dreary overcast days are when these lures excel. Nothing contributes to their success more than the correct rate of retrieval. Patience is paramount with such lures as plastic mice and frogs. After the lure lands in the shallows, the individual twitches it just a hair to make it move and then allows it to sit for as long as a minute or two before jerking the rod tip again. Like most topwater lures these require a calm surface. Crawlers will wobble when reeled in and experienced anglers will use different rates of retrieval. They will observe how bass react to those reeled in slowly, quickly and with speeds in between, and then adjust accordingly to how the fish attack the lure. Topwater lures called buzzbaits, which have "propeller-like" features that stir up the water, will catch bass in weeds and open water. The angler casts this lure well past a weedy spot and then starts to reel even before it has splashed down in the water. By moving the rod tip from side to side, she can direct it through, around and over lily pads where bass lurk.
The crankbait has a short body resembling a baitfish and a set or two of treble hooks. When an angler wants to "search" for bass in an area of the water, he first decides at what depth the fish are. Water temperatures above 55°F create a more active bass population and make crankbaits an option. Water that is cooler than this is not a good scenario for these lures. People should use lipless crankbaits in shallows where they do not have to dive deep. These work well when reeled in quickly over weeds that do not come all the way up to the surface. The lip sizes of crankbaits determine how deep they dive when reeled in. The short-lipped models can go as deep as 12 feet with a steady retrieve; the longer-lipped ones can make it down more than 20 feet. A favorite tactic of anglers that use these baits is to reel them in and then stop to let them float back toward the surface before bringing them back in again. This action makes the crankbait mimic an escaping fish.