Summer fish and how they react. In the summertime, when the water temperature gets in the 80’s, fish seem to get more lethargic and become rather finicky. So, what can you do to remedy this kind of behavior? You can use a Senko worm, which is pictured here.
You can rig this worm three different ways. The way this picture shows you here is a Texas rig. When using a Texas rig, run your line through a bullet weight, size of your choice (if using a weight), and then tie onto your worm hook. I prefer a Palomar knot because of its strength and it won’t come untied. Then run the hook down into the top of the worm the same length as the top of the hook prior to the 90 degree curve. Bring the hook out the side of the worm and pull the worm up to that top section of the hook. Turn the hook back toward the worm and bury it back into the worm, making it weedless. If it is a tough worm, you might want to run the hook all the way through and then back it back inside. That way you get easier penetration at the hookset, but you might also be more likely to hang up on vegetation.
Or, you can rig it by putting an “O” ring (a size 6) around the Senko worm and roll it on to the middle of the bait. This lets the bait oscillate and flex as you work it, giving the bait more action. You can also use just a regular 6”-10” worm, working it around the edge of the grass or out in open water around brush piles and grass beds.
Here is another way. A lot of people don't know about this. You can use a Carolina rig, as this picture illustrates.
You will see I have a jerk bait, such as a Thunder Stick, a Long-A Bomber, or a Rapala. This type of rigging will keep the bait just up off the bottom. As you are working the Carolina rig with the weight, this pulls the bait down toward the bottom. As you hesitate, the bait floats backs up a little ways. It mimics an injured minnow. Believe me, you will get bit.
You can also use a Senko worm with or without a weight by rigging two different styles. Use a Texas rig or put your “O” ring on the Senko using a weedless hook. Either way lets you get back and throw it into the grass, pads, gator grass, or pencil reeds without hanging up. These are my favorite ways of fishing a Senko.Some other lures you can use in the summertime would be lipless crank baits, frogs, and spinner baits. Sometimes around this time of the year you will see fish schooling. When this occurs, take and throw your lipless crank bait into the school. If this does not trigger a strike, you could start fan casting around for the fish. Even though they are not on the surface, this has been known to still trigger a strike. The best way you can find where these fish will come up is by watching the bait fish. If you see the bait start skipping across the top of the water, get ready, because something is chasing them. If you find yourself in this situation, you can catch a lot of fish in a hurry.
Hot Time In The Summertime –
Let me tell you about this one trip I had on May 28th. The water temperature was 85°. I had four people (two couples) from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We were using live bait on Lake Kissimmee after coming out of River Ranch on the Kissimmee River. Suzanne March had called me about this trip a few weeks before. She and her husband, Mike, and Patrick and his girlfriend all went together on my pontoon boat to go bass fishing. We also went catching … we caught around 15 or 20 bass, which is already a nice morning. Patrick is playing with his cell phone when he gets a strike, and this picture is what that strike produced - a12 lb. 1 oz trophy largemouth.
That was the second largest fish that I had guided for this year. So, while we were taking pictures, I said we've got about four shiners left. Let's put all new shiners on and make another trip around the same area. Well, guess what happened. So Susan and her girlfriend got in the two back seats and we went around again through the same area. This picture will tells the rest of the story. This fish weighed 13 pounds on the nose.
Even I have never had this happen on a guided trip. These are two fish of a lifetime and are now the two biggest largemouth bass caught in this season, which I generally consider begins in November and ends in May. They were both photographed and then released in the same area. Bet you would like to know exactly where in Lake Kissimmee I have been fishing all season long. A successful guide never shares all of his secrets, especially the best ones! After all … it is my livelihood.
Hot Tips –
There are a number of ways for keeping yourself from overheating while summertime fishing. First, make sure you have plenty of water on hand. It is extremely easy to get dehydrated before you even realize it. Second, wear lightweight clothing that is light colored, breathable and dries easily. Either wear long sleeves and pants for protection from the sun’s damaging rays or wear a strong sunscreen. My dermatologist recommends Neutrogena’s 85 SPF. Third, either carry some towels on board to soak with water and place around your neck or on your head for a quick cool down; use one of the various neck wraps available at local tackle or sporting goods stores; or there are neck scarfs/ties that have beads sewn in that, when soaked in water, absorb and hold it all day.
So, keep your cool and have a hot time on the water this summer.