Carolina, split-shot, mojo rig, no matter
what you call it, it serves you the same way, IT CATCHES FISH.
No matter which situation you use these rigs in you will have
the opportunity to catch fish. I will describe for you each
technique and where they can be best used.
Split-shot rig is probably the easiest one of all. Because
I am a bigger guy, over 6’ tall I prefer using a 6 ½’ Lamiglas
rods. For split-shotting I am currently using the Ti2000,
TBS 663. The rod is fast enough to pick up line when setting
the hook, yet sensitive enough to feel what is going on at
the end of line even in up to 50’ of water. On a calm day
yes, in the winter we fish as deep as 50’. To set up this
rig I attatch a #3 shot approximately 2-2 ½’ up from the hook.
McCoy 8lb test line does the trick for me because this rig
is used mostly in open water situations, and the abrasion
resistance of the line allows you to apply the shot directly
to the line without thoughts of line breakage. This rig is
especially effective when the fish are holding close to or
on the bottom structure. The structure that I would recommend
fishing with this rig is scattered rock. Because of the shape
of the shot it should not hang up to often and you will still
be able to feel the bottom change. A reason to fish this way
would be if the fish are finicky and the bite has slowed down.
The baits that I find most effective with this rig is smaller
plastics, grubs, worms, and 4" lizards. The smaller tubes
can be rigged this way also.
Carolina rigs are normally associated with fishing a stump
or rock field, or long sloping points. The rig gives you the
opportunity to fish as fast or as slow as you want to drag
it along. Fish a sinker that is bell shaped, they tend to
not get hung up dragging through the rocks. During calm conditions
you can use as light as an 1/8oz, but normally I will use
a ¼ oz or more weight, so that you can feel the bottom without
hanging up. On windy days, or current conditions you may have
to go as high as a ¾ oz. Using the McCoy "MCSTOPPER" to replace
the barrel swivel will eliminate 2 knots. The "MCSTOPPER"
is a hard piece of plastic that you can open with a pair of
pliers, slide it up your line under your sinker to the length
that you want your leader. I still slide on a glass bead to
connect with the sinker to give it the "ticking" sound. You
might want to invest in a longer rod to fish this way, as
you make a long cast and drag the bait along the bottom. You
want the longer rod to be able to pick up the line that is
out and get a strong hook set. A trick to use carolina rigging
is to tie on a jerkbait and drag it along the bottom, not
many fish have seen that before. Common baits fished this
way are grubs, worms, lizards, and reepers.
Mojo riggings are somewhat new to the market. It is set up
exactly the same, as the Carolina rig is; only change, the
mojo rig is most effective being used in and around grass.
The shape of the "mojo" is like a cylinder, so it allows the
rig to slide through the grass instead of burying itself and
getting hung in the grass. The method of fishing is exactly
the same as fishing a carolina rig. Maintain contact with
the bottom, and if you get hung up and shake it loose, be
prepared for the strike. The bait makes erratic movements
when you snap it free from the grass; this is when the strike
occurs. Keep watch on your depth finders, know the height
of the grass and set your leader approximately 6" above the
length of the grass.
Rigging your poles with a Carolina, split-shot, or mojo rig
is a good bet on any body of water during any time of the
year. When fish are not very active, or you have covered an
area with a reaction bait, try picking up a "RIG" and thow
it. Long rods are a must. They help you cast further, and
give you backbone for better hook sets. This way of fishing
for me is my mainstay. I catch most of my fish during the
year with one of these techniques. Enjoy your day on the water
and "feel" what you are fishing