You hear it all the time; if the bite is tough, go to the drop shot. If you rarely fish this technique, then you might not feel confident in your ability to catch fish. Confidence can be your friend or enemy depending on your frame of mind. Do not concern yourself with where to fish the drop shot, rather pay attention as to how you manage the setup.
The drop shot as most of you know is a finesse technique for targeting finicky biters or reluctant fish. This method is a great way to offer a natural presentation. Roboworms are one of the most recognized drop shot baits on the market today, and for good reason, but when an entire field of competitors are using the same bait, you can make progress by changing up your tactics. Larger worms, creature baits, and other lures such as small swimbaits can be nose-hooked and rigged up on the drop shot.
Fluorocarbon line is a must since most drop shot anglers use this system in clear water conditions or when fish are at their highest guard. The majority of men and women prefer 4-6lb test, but jumping up to 8lb fluorocarbon will give you added strength without additional visibility; it’s a win-win situation especially around light to medium cover. From 40+ feet to shallow spawning depths, this method of fishing is as versatile as they come. Beyond the available baits, you have several options for hooks and weights.
I prefer Owner Mosquito Hooks (Size 1) and Voss Drop Shot Weights. Owner hooks are sharp out of the package and cost efficient. Voss Drop Shot Weights are slender and come pre-bent into a half-moon shape. These weights are a smart choice around rocky areas as they tend to avoid cracks and holes better than a standard teardrop weight. These two products help keep you from retying often, which means more time fishing and less time managing the rig.
Instead of worrying about your performance, cast the drop shot to any location that you would normally throw soft plastics. While keeping the weight on bottom, very lightly shake your rod tip (we are only talking a couple of inches). Be very subtle with your movements and instead of slamming the hook home, a simple lift of your rod tip will be sufficient.
Cast a drop shot, drop it straight down, or drag it from the back of the boat. The drop shot rig can be fished many different ways. Don’t allow a simple method such as this intimidate you or your confidence; it’s a proven style that involves light tackle and a little patience.