Fishing with artificials

February 07, 2016 by Andrew Herzog

Trip Info

The Catch

Winter flats fishing is a great time to use artificial baits. It’s always great to have one tied on in case you stumble upon a redfish school. Here is some advice for ways to rig your soft plastic baits during the changing season.Currently I’ve been using stick baits and paddle tails. With these baits there are a variety of hook choices. It’s important to rig your bait correctly so it swims properly. It also ensures the bait is giving off just the right vibration, look and feel to attract a hungry fish.

When you’re targeting the flats you want to use a weedless weighted swim bait hook. These come in a variety of weights and sizes. . When using a small paddle tail, I like to use an eight ounce weight and a 3/0 hook. Fish respond best to a paddle tail when reeled in slowly. For thick, grassy areas, stick baits can get you though the grass and to the fish. I suggest using a heaver weight 1/2 oz to a 4/0 hook. Bounce a stick bait off the bottom or cast and reel to entice a bite. You can also use a normal jig head on a swim bait. It’s best for deeper water or where weeds are not an issue, like casting off the shoreline for snook. I use a 1/8 ounce jig head like Rockport Rattler and reel it though the wave break area. Snook like to sit here to ambush bait.

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