Sunday, March 22, 2015

Using A "Drop Shot" Rig When Fishing For Rainbow Trout

When fishermen think of the term "drop shotting" their attention almost always turns to bass fishing,
and with good reason.  The drop shot rig is one of the most effective bass fishing rigs of all time.  So if a rig is effective for bass, why couldn't it be used when fishing for other species of fish?  Well, it obviously can, and experienced anglers have been doing so for quite a long time.  I have to admit, although I am an experienced angler, I tend to get "stuck it ruts" when it comes to my fishing, especially when it comes to my favorite species of fish the rainbow trout.

I've always unintentionally followed the premise, "if something works, why try something new?", and as arcane and hard headed as that it, for much of my fishing life (especially in the early days) it's how things were. Then a few years ago a colleague of mine started introducing me to new idea's and the rest was history.  One of these idea's was using a drop shot rig when fishing for rainbow trout.  When I saw him limit out one early afternoon a few years ago, I made sure that I took a mental notes on what it was that he was doing, and soon thereafter drop shot fishing became a part of my trout fishing arsenal.

 I like to a seven or so foot long ultralight fishing rod when I am using drop shot rig for trout.  By using a fishing rod with a little bit of length I am not only able to make longer cast, but it also makes it easier to add action to my worm by simply lightly shaking the tip of the rod.  

Using a drop shot rig when fishing for trout is primarily a "finesse" technique that seems to work best when other trout fishing tactics simply aren't producing. The rig itself is set up like this.  First you will need a 2X or so light wire fishing hook with a turned down eye.  The hook is threaded onto your line at least two feet and then the hook is tied to your line using a Palomar knot.  When you are done with the knot you want to take your tag end of your line and thread the line back through the bottom end of the hook.  The reason for this is to make the hook stick straight out from the line.  Now a simple overhand knot is tied at the bottom of the tag end of your line at the depth you would like your worm to be above the bottom.This knot will act is a "stopper" for the split shot sinker that will now be pinched to the tag end of the tag end as your weight.  This way when you cast your rig out your split shot wont go sailing off into the abyss. Now a floating trout worm is threaded onto your hook about 1/4 of an inch so that it sticks straight out from the hook (not like the worm in the picture above). 

The baited rig is now cast out and allowed to sink to the bottom.  Now reel in the slack line and slowly raise your rod tip, then shake the end of your rod as you reel, and repeat.  Then recast and repeat so that you thoroughly cover the water that you are fishing. You will feel a tap, tap when a trout bites.  You want to work the bait in a straight line back to you as you retrieve and try to keep the slack out of the line as much as possible.  And remember, this is a finesse technique so don't work the rig too fast.  Slower is better when it comes to using a drop shot rig for rainbow trout.

 As you can imagine, drop shotting for trout is most effective in lakes are large pools in a river where there is little to know current flow.  This "finesse" technique is very effective when trout fishing so make sure you add it to your trout fishing repertoire as soon as possible. 

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