Snag Resistant Lure Rigging 'Weedless Rigging'
In Australian waters this rig will work well when targeting Barramundi, Saratoga, Bream, Bass, Estuary Perch, Flathead, Mangrove Jack, Golden Perch, Mulloway, and Murray Cod. In fact, any species that inhabits areas of weed or fallen trees and the like. Rigging soft plastics in a ‘Weedless Rig’ enables lures to be cast into areas where you could never previously reach with other rigging methods without being at risk of constant snagging.
Traditional rigging methods can be both frustrating and expensive due to the loss of tackle, the time taken to re-rig, and missed fish. Also called Texas rigging you will catch more fish using this method across all conditions. Useful when casting or trolling, this approach works well on any fish that inhabits dense snags, rock or weed cover.
A number of hook patterns can be used in a Weedless Rig. The most popular is the Wide Gape Worm Hook, closely followed by Straight or Long Shank Worm Hooks and Offset Jig Hooks (pictured in the images below) and all available in the Swimerz range. When setting up a Weedless rig choose an appropriate sinker type; Lead or Tungsten Bullet or Worm sinkers present the most streamlined profile with their pointed tip assisting the lure/hook combination to slip through the snaggy area. Other sinker types can also be used however, with the Egg or Bean sinker also providing good profile characteristics.
Tungsten sinkers, due to their higher density, have a much smaller profile than a Lead sinker of similar weight. When a smaller profile is important the tungsten worm and barrel sinkers can be considered with the innovative Cheburashka ‘clip-on’ jighead a great option, particularly where a light weight rig is required.
There are some derivative rigs that can also be used depending on the fishing conditions.
- The Carolina Rig is one option, where a ‘sinker stopper’ such as a Vike TStop, or even a toothpick, can be used to place the sinker a set distance from the lure, along the line/leader in use, providing the lure with an improved ability to move in the water, particularly when bottom fishing (illustrated in image C).
- By adding a treble as a 'stinger' to a wide gape worm hook, and locking the treble on with a bead, (image D) you have an awesome jigging or trolling rig for deeper water conditions. The addition of a treble in this rig however, reduces its effectiveness as a snag resistant lure rig, but provides an exceptional way of rigging soft plastics, resembling the way in which hard body lures operate.