New Ideas for the Carolina Rig
With the hottest portion of the summer well under way bass anglers are still trying new and old techniques to draw strikes. The climax of summer marks a difficult time to be on the water after largemouths. The wind has laid, the sun beats down, and the sticky humidity makes fishing a little less comfortable than an easy chair under the air condition. However, there are many of us diehards that are always out there trying to fool one more bass. Many techniques have come and gone and repeated themselves earlier this year. Crankbaiting, Carolina Rigging, Topwater, Spinnerbaits, and various others. All of these techniques shine at one time or other and many work almost all the time. This time of year bass prefer a slow moving bait due to the high water temperatures. Lake Conroe’s structure fishing for bass is dominated by the Carolina Rig. There have been several new products come about to enhance this fish catching method. in the past I have picked up on a few tricks to Carolina Rigging. Using twenty to twenty five pound test line reduced break offs when hung up. The heavy line also held up much better than lighter line during the aggressive hooksets that Carolina Rigging requires. Obviously, bigger fish are not as serious a threat when using heavy line. Using a slightly less pound test line as the leader would decrease the loss of the complete rig when the hook was hung up. The leader line would break before the mainline sparing the weight, bead, and barrel swivel. A seven foot, heavy action rod made casting long leaders a cinch and hooksets on long casts bit easier. There are many other tricks to enhancing the Carolina Rig and gear to fish them. The heavy monofilament was satisfactory to me until I tried some of these new braided lines. I say “new” braided lines meaning a new type of braided line. Braided lines have been around for years, yet not made from materials like Kevlar, Dacron, or polyethylene. In the articles that I have read the lines have been complimented on the impact they have had on jig fishing and flipping heavy cover. I have been using Fenwick’s Tron Thread which is thirty pound test with a diameter of ten pound test monofilament. The multi-filament fishing line has some unique characteristics that seem to cater to Carolina Rigging. Iron Thread has a “stretch factor,, of 7.6%. Monofilament has an average “stretch factor” of 25%. So basically, the line will stretch 1/5 less on a hookset when using braided line. This means that the hook will penetrate within the first couple of feet of the hookset using braided line rather than at the end of the hookset when using monofilament. An adequate hookset can be obtained with a shorter arc of the rod and with less power. Being that Iron Thread has a low “stretch factor” there is more feel to the line. In other words the line does not stretch to absorb light strikes and bottom features like monofilament. Sensitivity is one of the keys to Carolina Rigging and the multi-filament magnifies bottom features and light strikes. Another enhancement is various noise making devises within the rig. Don Iovino’s Brass and Glass which is brass weights and glass beads designed to make a clicking sound when the brass weight engages with the glass bead. The latest Carolina Rigging accessory designed after a proven fish attracting principal is a product from Big Cat. Big Cat introduced rattling weights which are available in popular Carolina Rigging sizes. The weights have an appoxy capsule portion with 8-10 lead beads that rattle inside the chamber to create a real racket. The weights produce excessive amounts of noise when fished through brush and rocks. Each time the weight drops off of a branch or rock it falls to bottom or another structure causing the rattles to make noise and attract fish. The weights have become popular with guides and tournament angler’s who are always looking for ways to catch more fish than competitors. These new products are interesting and extremely advantageous to use. Soon we will all be using these products just to keep up with new standards and competition on the water. About the time we all get used to these new products and start to take them for granted someone will discover a new improvement that caters to Carolina Rigging. Until then, good luck fishing and remember to apply a powerful sunscreen and carry plenty of water when fishing through the “Dog Days”.