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Bottom Fishing Explained: A Multi-Species Guide

Written by: Pete D
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The idea of “bottom fishing” covers a wide array of techniques in both fresh- and saltwater.

The basic concept, of course, is to weight a rig and work the bottom, whether that be on a bass pond with a Texas Rig, on a shallow flat with a Fireball Rig, or in the Great Lakes with a bottom bouncer.

The sheer variety of bottom fishing techniques means that we can’t discuss them all, but we can give you a few pointers and discuss some of the more common techniques for the most popular species.

Related:

Bottom Fishing for Largemouth Bass

If there’s a species for which bottom fishing techniques have been elevated to an art form, it’s bass.

From Texas and Carolina rigs to finesse techniques like Neko and Drop Shot rigs, there are perhaps dozens of ways to work the bottom for largemouth.

The Texas rig

texas rigged and pegged senko worm

The Texas rig is perhaps bass angling’s most legendary bottom-fishing technique.

Deadly with a variety of soft plastic worms and senkos, it’s ideal for punching heavy vegetation and very accurate on the cast. That can let you get into spots that might otherwise elude you, and once on the bottom, its bullet-weighted head creates that desirable tail-up presentation that drives bass wild.

We’ve written an in-depth article on the Texas Rig, so if you’d like to take a deep dive into this awesome technique, check it out:

The Texas Rig: A Complete Guide to Rigging and Techniques

To assemble a Texas Rig, follow these steps:

  1. Slide a bullet sinker, tip first, onto your main line.
  2. Using a Palomar Knot, attach an offset shank hook. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  3. Pass the point of an offset hook through the tip of the worm’s head. You want to run the hook about an inch into the worm.
  4. Push the worm up and over the eye of your hook. You want to get the worm to lay straight, using that offset to your advantage.
  5. Rotate the point back toward the worm. Stretch the worm out along the hook.
  6. Measure the bottom of the curve of the hook on the worm’s body. That’s where you want to bury the point in the next step.
  7. Push the point back into the worm’s body, bringing the tip through to the opposite side. 
  8. Push just a bit of your worm onto the hook, creating a weedless rig.

Keep in mind the following tips when bottom fishing with a Texas Rig:

  • Strikes will often happen on the fall, as the Texas Rig descends and sends your trailer dancing. Be ready for a strike the moment it hits the water!
  • If your rig manages to make it to the bottom, it’s almost impossible to fish this rig too slowly.
  • Slow dragging, a few gentle, fluttering pops, and the occasional twitch is all you need to allow the Texas rig to strut its stuff.
  • Use a medium-heavy to heavy power rod with a fast action to properly set your hook.
  • Many anglers prefer to run braid with a Texas Rig, adding some tough leader if they’re concerned about line-shy fish.

The Carolina rig

carolina rig

Where the bottom is relatively hard and vegetation is sparse, the Carolina Rig comes into its own as the bottom-fishing technique of the pros.

Essentially a heavily modified Texas Rig that moves the soft plastic trailer well back from the bullet weight, the Carolina Rig offers an attractive, buoyant presentation that makes the most of long curly tails and appendages on your creature baits.

We’ve written a complete guide to the Carolina Rig, so if you want to know more, please take a look:

Carolina Rig: An Unbeatable Technique for Hard, Flat Bottoms

To assemble a Carolina Rig, follow these steps:

  1. Slide a bullet or barrel sinker onto your main line.
  2. Follow this with an 8mm plastic bead to protect your knot.
  3. Attach a barrel swivel using an Improved Palomar. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  4. Cut approximately 18 to 24 inches of leader, but adjust this length to float your soft plastic above the available cover.
  5. Using a Uni Knot, attach your leader to the barrel swivel. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  6. Using an Improved Palomar Knot, attach an offset shank hook to the end of your leader. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  7. Pass the point of an offset hook through the tip of the worm’s head. You want to run the hook about an inch into the worm.
  8. Push the worm up and over the eye of your hook. You want to get the worm to lay straight, using that offset to your advantage.
  9. Rotate the point back toward the worm. Stretch the worm out along the hook.
  10. Measure the bottom of the curve of the hook on the worm’s body. That’s where you want to bury the point in the next step.
  11. Push the point back into the worm’s body, bringing the tip through to the opposite side. 
  12. Push just a bit of your worm onto the hook, creating a weedless rig.

These tips should help you fish the Carolina Rig effectively:

  • The Carolina Rig is more effective on an open bottom than the Texas Rig.
  • Slower is better than fast with this rig, and sliding the Carolina along the bottom with a sideways motion of your rod is key.
  • Keep your line tight and be ready for a strike.
  • Use a medium-heavy to heavy power rod with a fast action to properly set your hook.
  • Many anglers prefer to run braid with a Carolina Rig, adding some tough leader if they’re concerned about line-shy fish.
  • Common soft plastic trailers for Carolina Rigs include Zoom’s 5 ¼-inch Super Fluke and Brush Hog, as well as YUM ribbon tail worms.

The Neko rig

neko rig

Where bass have been hit hard by anglers weekend after weekend, you’re going to need to throw something new, something they haven't seen and learned to be wary of.

The Neko Rig is just that. When nothing else gets a bite, it’s time for your secret weapon.

Very similar to a Wacky Rig, the Neko is easy to assemble and fish.

We’ve written a complete guide to the Neko Rig, so if you want to know more, here’s where to look:

Neko Rig: The Ideal Technique for Wary Bass

To assemble a Neko Rig, follow these steps:

  1. Attach a length of fluorocarbon leader to your braided main line using the 5-Turn Surgeon’s Knot.
  2. Slip an O-ring over your soft plastic, placing it about 1/3rd of the way from the head to the tail. If you’re out of O-rings, you can always hook the soft plastic directly as you would in a standard wacky set-up.
  3. Press your nail weight into the head of your bait.
  4. Using an Improved Palomar Knot, attach your hook and slide it under the O-ring from the head end. This will improve hooksets and help you avoid snags.

The Neko Rig is very easy to fish if you remember the following tips:

  • For this finesse bottom-fishing technique, you want to use a 6 ½- to 7-foot rod in medium light to medium power, like the St. Croix Premier.
  • The Neko Rig is super effective around structure, like rip-rap, docks, and brush.
  • Strikes will often happen on the fall, so be ready!
  • If your Neko Rig makes it to the bottom, keep a tight line, keep your rod tip at about 10:00, and work it with a gentle twitching motion.
  • Popular trailers for the Neko Rig include Zoom’s Trick Worms, Gary Yamamoto’s 5” Senko, and Zoom’s 5” Lizard. But in early spring, I reach for Strike King’s Rage Tail Craw.

The Drop Shot rig

drop-shot rig

The Drop Shot rig is another finesse bottom-fishing technique that really sets your soft plastic trailer free to do its thing. Ideal on all bottom types, it’s a versatile choice that’ll catch more fish, more consistently, than almost anything else.

We love the Drop Shot rig, and it’s no surprise that we’ve covered it extensively before:

How To Tie a Drop Shot Rig

Drop Shot Tips

A Drop Shot rig is easy to assemble; we’ll show you how:

Working the bottom with a Drop Shot rig is extremely effective if you pay attention to these tips:

  • The Drop Shot rig lets you precisely control the depth of your presentation while keeping contact with the bottom. We prefer a cylinder weight to cut down on hang-ups.
  • Since this is a finesse technique, it’s essential to run the right tackle. Much like the Neko Rig, you want to look for a 6 ½- to 7-foot rod in medium light to medium power, like the St. Croix Premier
  • Drop shot hooks are often very effective, but if you want to run this rig weedlessly, choose an offset hook and run the point back into your trailer.
  • You’ll want to gently twitch your rod tip to get that soft plastic trailer moving, perhaps occasionally lifting the rig off the bottom and letting it settle again.
  • Effective trailers include Zoom’s Trick Worms, Gary Yamamoto’s 5” Senko, and Zoom’s 5” Lizard.

Bottom Fishing for Catfish

Working the bottom for catfish is THE way to catch blues, flatheads, and channel cats.

Now, that doesn’t mean burying your bait in the mud, and successful, cooler-filling forays require the right rigs.

Let’s discuss the three most popular bottom-fishing techniques for catfish.

The Slip or Sliding Sinker Rig (A Modified Carolina Rig)

Slip Sinker Rig

The Slip Sinker Rig is a close relative of the Carolina Rig, and with a heavy egg sinker, it’ll cast well, hold fast to the bottom even in a strong current, and lift your live bait up just where catfish are looking for a quick meal, allowing minnows to swim frantically and attract all the attention you’ll need.

Slip Sinker Rigs are easy to put together; just follow these steps:

  1. Slide an egg sinker onto your main line. 
  2. Follow the sinker with a bead.
  3. Attach a heavy-duty barrel swivel with a Uni Knot, wet it, and tighten it down, trimming the tag end.
  4. Cut approximately 18 inches of tough leader.
  5. Using a Palomar Knot, attach a strong hook. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  6. Attach the leader to your barrel swivel using a Uni Knot. Wet it, tighten it down, and trim the tag end.

This isn’t a challenging rig to assemble, but you need to understand a few things to get it right.

Just any strong hook isn’t the way to go. Since you’ll need to let the catfish take your live bait for a moment, and since your hookset may not be as hard as you’d like if you’re fishing at a distance, we strongly recommend a 4X circle or octopus hook like the Gamakatsu.

There are a few tips with this rig to keep in mind:

  • Channel cats prefer stinky options like chicken livers, but flatheads and blues prefer live or cut fish like minnows, shad, or bluegill.

For the full run-down on these dietary preferences, be sure to check out this article:

What Do Catfish Eat?

  • You’ll want strong line for this rig, as it’s going to take a real beating with a big catfish. I prefer Berkley Trilene Big Game for its abrasion resistance and shock strength.
  • Use enough weight to allow the casting you need and the sticking power necessary for your rig to stay put, given the current you face.
  • Giving this rig a pop every now and then will add an element of sound as the slider strikes the bead, and that can really attract cats to come in for a closer look.

The Santee Cooper Rig

 Santee Cooper Rig

The Santee Cooper Rig is another option that casts well, stays put, and floats your bait up off the mud where it can do the most good. By adding that cigar float, you ensure that cut bait doesn’t just lay flat on the bottom, and that triggers a lot more attention from hungry catfish.

I prefer a Santee Cooper Rig to the Slip Sinker Rig when fishing cut or dead bait, as the presentation is so much better.

The Santee Cooper Rig isn’t any more complicated to make than the Slip Sinker Rig:

  1. Add an egg sinker to your main line.
  2. Attach a heavy-duty barrel swivel with a Uni Knot, wet it, and tighten it down, trimming the tag end.
  3. Cut approximately 24 inches of tough leader.
  4. Using a Palomar Knot, attach a strong hook. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  5. Attach a float stop about a foot from your hook.
  6. Slide a foam float onto your leader behind the stop.
  7. Attach the leader to your barrel swivel using a Uni Knot. Wet it, tighten it down, and trim the tag end.

These tips will help you catch more fish with the Santee Cooper Rig:

  • Blues and flatheads can’t resist a big chunk of cut bait. Remember to size your hook to your bait, not the fish you plan to catch!
  • I strongly recommend that you use a 4X circle or octopus hook. You’ll catch more catfish, no question about it, and the big gap makes rigging cut bait a breeze.
  • Vary your leader length for the conditions. You want your bait up off the bottom, but not too high. I aim for somewhere between 12 and 24 inches, depending on what the bottom is like.

The Three-Way Rig

three-way-rig for catfish

The Three-Way Rig is probably the most popular catfish rig out there, as it accomplishes everything you want: it holds the bait still in a current and keeps it up off the bottom. Excellent with live as well as cut bait, it’s a solid choice whatever you’re using to catch cats.

Don’t skimp on the strength of the 3-way swivel; big cats are going to tear into this rig!

To tie a Three-Way Rig, follow these steps:

  1. Attach your main line to the top of a three-way swivel using a Uni Knot.
  2. Wet the knot, tighten it down, and trim the tag end.
  3. Cut a length of line (dropper line) to determine the depth of your presentation. I start with 12 to 18 inches but vary that as necessary. I don’t recommend using strong line for the dropper, as you may need to break it if it snags.
  4. Using a Uni Knot, attach this line to a disc sinker.
  5. Wet the knot, tighten it down, and trim the tag end.
  6. Attach the weighted line to the bottom of your three-way swivel using a Uni Knot.
  7. Wet the knot, tighten it down, and trim the tag end.
  8. Cut 12 to 18 inches of leader, and using a Snell Knot, attach a strong hook.
  9. Wet the knot, tighten it down, and trim the tag end.
  10. Using a Uni Knot, attach the hook and leader to the rearward facing eye of the three-way swivel.
  11. Wet the knot, tighten it down, and trim the tag end.

There are a few tips with a Three-Way Rig that you should pay attention to:

  • Use relatively weak line between your swivel and your sinker so that you can break free if you snag badly.
  • Use tough-as-nails leader out to your hook. I recommend Berkley Trilene Big Game in an appropriate weight for the size cats you’re catching.
  • As with the other catfish rigs, I can’t say enough about the improved performance of circle hooks like the 4X Gamakatsu.If you buy a straight shank hook, skip the Snell knot and use a Palomar instead.

Bottom Fishing for Walleye

Walleye can hide deep, especially in the summer, and catching them on or near the bottom is a prime technique when the mercury is high.

Several bottom-fishing rigs have earned the respect of anglers over the years, and we’ll cover your best options in depth.

The Loten Rig (A Modified Slip Sinker Rig)

Loten Rig

The Loten Rig is unusual because it relies on a nightcrawler that’s been injected with air rather than a float to create buoyancy. The advantage of this approach for keen-eyes wallies is obvious: you get an exceptionally natural presentation that won’t spook them off your bait.

The addition of a stinger hook to the jig head means that short strikes still create good hook-ups, so this is a really deadly option to try.

The Loten Rig isn’t the easiest to put together, but the steps aren’t that complicated:

  1. Slide a Lindy No-Snagg, but a standard slip sinker will work.
  2. Crimp a large split shot to your line to act as a sinker stop. You’ll need three to four feet of line between this stop and your hook.
  3. Using a Palomar Knot, attack a ¼-ounce jig head. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  4. Attack a pre-tied stinger hook.
  5. Using a syringe, inject your nightcrawler with air.
  6. Run the head onto your jig, and snug it up to the jig head.

Getting this rig right might take some practice, but you’ll quickly learn to pump up a fat nightcrawler!

Remember to troll slowly, and this rig will catch walleye like nobody’s business!

The Carolina Float Rig 

carolina float rig

We discussed the Carolina Rig above for bass, and for good reason. On a relatively open bottom, it’s very hard to beat.

By adding a small float to the mix, you can create a Carolina Float Rig, a walleye killer from shore if ever there were one. And whether you choose to run a soft plastic trailer or a fat leech, you can count on this rig to deliver.

The Carolina Float Rig is deadly for three reasons. The combination of a bullet weight and bead creates an enticing vibration that attracts hungry walleye. Second, it’s easy to cast, enabling long, accurate pitches that get this rig where you need it. And finally, the float buoys your live bait, keeping it right where hunting fish can see it best.

To assemble a Carolina Float Rig, follow these steps:

  1. Slide a bullet weight onto your main line.
  2. Follow it with a bead
  3. Using a Uni Knot, attach a barrel swivel.
  4. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  5. Cut 18 to 24 inches of line. The length of this leader will determine the depth of your presentation.
  6. Attach a float stop. The position of this stop will determine where the foam float is placed on your leader, affecting the position of your hook and bait.
  7. Slide a foam float onto your leader
  8. If you’re using a leech or worm, use a Palomar Knot to attach a 2/0 Gamakatsu circle hook. If you’re running a soft plastic trailer, try a 2/0 Gamakatsu Black EWG Offset Worm Hook.
  9. Wet the knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  10. Using a Uni Knot, attach the other end of the leader to the barrel swivel.
  11. Wet the knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.

If you’re not familiar with how to fish a Floating Carolina Rig, pay attention to these tips:

  • Don’t use more weight than you need to cast well.
  • A good circle hook like the Gamakatsu will really increase the number of hook-ups you get from strikes, especially if you’re casting long distances.
  • If you prefer, you can run braided main line to your barrel swivel and then mono leader to your hook. In this combo, I prefer braid at roughly 20-pound test and 8- to 10-pound mono leader.
  • Work this rig slowly across the bottom, letting it rest and giving it a few small twitches with your rod tip from time to time.
  • Soft plastic trailers to consider with this rig include Zoom’s 5 ¼-inch Super Fluke, Dr.Fish Paddle Tails, and Z-MAN Z Man Razor Shad.

The Bottom-Bouncer Rig

Bottom-Bouncer Rig

In the summer, walleye can hold deep, and trolling is the most effective technique to get a bite.

A true Bottom Bouncer Rig is among the best options out there, as it’s impossible to snag while still presenting your live bait near the bottom.

You can make these rigs from separate parts, but doing so is at least 4 times as expensive as buying them already put together by Eagle Claw. Just attach a foot or so of mono leader, tie on a #2 circle hook, and run a worm of leech.

It’s that simple.

Bottom Fishing in the Surf or from a Pier

Working the bottom from the beach or a pier is the most common way anglers fish saltwater, and there are a number of excellent bottom-fishing rigs you can use in these situations.

We’ve written extensively about this topic before, so be sure to check out these articles:

Pier Fishing Rigs: Four Options to Improve Your Odds

Saltwater Bottom Fishing: A Complete How-To Guide

The Fish Finder Rig (A Modified Carolina Rig)

fish finder rig

The Fish Finder Rig is a staple of surf and pier fishing. It holds your bait fast against even the strongest tide and current, casts like a dream, and works exceptionally well whether you’re using live or cut bait.

The only thing the Fish Finder Rig doesn’t do well is fend off crabs, so if you’re having your bait stolen time and time again, switch to a floating option.

The Fish Finder Rig is easy to assemble, and it won’t take much practice to make you a pro:

  1. Slide a sinker sleeve onto your main line. Attach a pyramid sinker to the clip.
  2. Follow it with a bead. This will protect your barrel swivel from the heavy sinker.
  3. Using a Uni Knot, attach a barrel swivel
  4. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  5. Cut 18 to 25 inches of leader, using wire for species with aggressive teeth.
  6. Using a Palomar Knot, attach a circle hook to one end of the leader.
  7. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  8. Using a Uni Knot, attach the other end of your leader to the barrel swivel.
  9. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.

For shark and other large fish with a mouth full of razors:

  1. Slide a sinker sleeve onto your main line.
  2. Follow it with a bead.
  3. Using a Uni Knot, attach a size 4 or 5 barrel swivel.
  4. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end. If you run very heavy mono, it’s probably easier to crimp than tie.
  5. Cut 18 to 25 inches of heavy wire leader.
  6. Run the wire through the eye of your hook, slide on a single barrel connector, and crimp it down tightly with pliers.
  7. Crimp the wire leader to the barrel swivel.

This is an extremely effective rig, especially over sandy bottoms.

Keep these tips in mind to help you get the most from the Fish Finder Rig:

  • Size your hook to your bait, not the fish you plan to catch.
  • Use enough weight to allow for long casts, if necessary, and to hold your rig in place in heavy current.
  • I prefer to use circle hooks like Gamakatsu’s, as they increase your hookups from strikes. If the eye is in-line, use the Palomar Knot; if it’s offset, switch to a Snell.
  • My choice for heavy mono is Berkley Trilene Big Game. It won’t let you down!

The Floating Fish Finder Rig

Floating Fish Finder Rig

I switch to the Floating Fish Finder Rig when crabs are a problem or when I want to float my bait up and over marine grasses.

It’s also very effective when cast up against pier pilings.

The Floating Fish Finder Rig adds a step or two to the standard version, but it’s easy to assemble:

  1. Slide a sinker sleeve onto your main line. Attach a pyramid sinker to the clip
  2. Follow it with a bead. This will protect your barrel swivel from the heavy sinker.
  3. Using a Uni Knot, attach a barrel swivel.
  4. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  5. Cut 18 to 25 inches of leader, using wire for species with aggressive teeth.
  6. Using a Palomar Knot, attach a circle hook to one end of the leader.
  7. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  8. Crimp a split shot or two, 3 to 4 inches back from your hook.
  9. Slide a cigar float onto your leader.
  10. Using a Uni Knot, attach the other end of your leader to the barrel swivel.
  11. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.

For shark and other large fish with a mouth full of razors:

  1. Slide a sinker sleeve onto your main line.
  2. Follow it with a bead..
  3. Using a Uni Knot, attach a size 4 or 5 barrel swivel.
  4. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end. If you run very heavy mono, it’s probably easier to crimp than tie.
  5. Cut 18 to 25 inches of heavy wire leader.
  6. Run the wire through the eye of your hook, slide on a single barrel connector, and crimp it down tightly with pliers.
  7. Crimp a split shot or two 3 to 4 inches back from your hook.
  8. Slide a cigar float onto your leader.
  9. Crimp the wire leader to the barrel swivel.

The Floating Sinker Rig is especially effective if you follow these tips:

  • Use enough weight to allow for long casts and staying power in the face of heavy currents and tides.
  • Live bait is an excellent choice for this rig, as it will swim freely - and even when dead or dying - stay off the bottom.
  • Size your hook to match your bait option.
  • Definitely give circle hooks like Gamakatsu’s a try. They’ll result in more hooked fish and provide plenty of space for bait. But remember, if the eye is in-line, use the Palomar Knot; if it’s offset, switch to a Snell.
  • I like Berkley Trilene Big Game for non-wire leader: it’s easy to tie, very abrasion resistant, and can tame shock like nothing else.

The High/Low Rig

high-low-rig

The High/Low Rig is deadly for croaker, specks, and flounder, and it’s easy to rig and cast as well.

Ideal for running multiple jigs or minnows, you can experiment with different color options or bait choices until you find what’s ringing the dinner bell at that moment.

Some anglers use a single main line, with Dropper Loops and leaders running from them. For this style of rigging, T-swivels aren’t necessary, but in my experience, tangling can be a real issue.

To assemble a High/Low Rig, follow these steps:

  1. Cut 10 to 18 inches of leader.
  2. Using a Uni Knot, tie your leader to the bottom of a T-swivel.
  3. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  4. Cut 18 inches of leader.
  5. Using a Uni Knot, tie that leader to the top of your T-swivel.
  6. Using a Uni Knot, tie the other end to the bottom of a second T-swivel.
  7. Wet your knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  8. Cut another 18 inches of leader.
  9. Using a Uni Knot, tie it to the top of the second T-swivel.
  10. Wet the knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  11. Using a Uni Knot, attach the free end of that leader to a barrel swivel.
  12. Wet the knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  13. Using a Surgeon’s Knot, attach the sinker of your choice to the lower leader.
  14. At the high T-swivel, use a Uni Knot to attach roughly 10 to 12 inches of leader.
  15. Wet the knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  16. Using a Palomar knot, attach a circle hook or jig head to the end of this short leader.
  17. Wet the knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.
  18. At the low T-swivel, use a Uni Knot to attach roughly 18 to 24 inches of leader.
  19. Using a Palomar knot, attach a circle hook or jig head to the end of this short leader.
  20. Wet the knot, tighten it, and trim the tag end.

If you’d like to skip this complicated process, you can buy a quality High/Low Rig from Tide Rite that’s made from 30-pound mono leader. Tide Rite uses loops at the hooks, so they’re easy to change if you don’t want the Mustad bait holders they supply.

For bluefish and other species with plenty of teeth, you can use wire leader material or buy some that are pre-made. Jasmine makes a nice pre-tied wire rig, and it’s available in one- and two-armed versions.

A few tips to keep in mind with High-Low rigs:

  • If you’re using minnows and finding that two are causing tangles, try re-tying the rig with a single leader and hook.
  • If you fish in areas where snags are a constant problem, use a dropper line of lightweight mono that allows you to break off your sinker if you get hung up.
  • I strongly recommend circle hooks if you’re using live bait; otherwise, I tend to throw Bucktail jigs, especially if I’m chasing flounder.

The Fireball Rig

Fireball Rig

Fireball Rigs are simply deadly on specks, pompano, croaker, and flounder. Essentially a modified High-Low Rig, they add big, bright floats to attract attention - and they sure do!

I buy mine pre-tied from Topsail Tackle. Expect heavy mono leader and 3/0 circle hooks.

I like to use these in conjunction with a heavy pyramid sinker to allow for long casts from the beach and keep them put even in strong currents. Depending on how far I’m snap casting, I’ll use a 1-, 2-, 3-, or even 4-ounce sinker.

Final Thoughts

Fishing the bottom is an effective way to target species ranging from largemouth bass to pompano - if you know what you’re doing!

We hope you’ve learned something from this article today, and as always, we’re here to answer any questions you might have.

Please leave a comment below!

About The Author
Pete D
Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Pete grew up fishing on the Great Lakes. When he’s not out on the water, you can find him reading his favorite books, and spending time with his family.
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