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Catching Big Bass Using the Neko Rig

In this video, Lucky Tackle Box's own Travis Moran, breaks down everything you need to know about one of the hottest finesse techniques, the Neko Rig! Using the Smart Baits Smart Bomb stick bait, Travis shows how the Neko Rig is a perfect option for late-winter and early spring fishing. To make sure you're set up right, he'll show you how to rig it, retrieve it and where to fish it.

*Transcript below 

Oh, oh, oh, I'm either in a tree ... Oh, I got one, here we go, ready?

We're doing some video game fishing. That is our bait going down there and those are fish around some kind of little tree stump or something like that. We're going to shake that little bad boy. There we go. I gotta reel down and then set. We have got some action. Someone's coming up quick, but that is the beginning of the video.

Guys, we're coming into the warmer months, and we're coming out of that deep, deep winter. It's starting to warm up a little bit, which it's definitely not warm by any means yet, but these fish are going to start feeding out. This guy is long, but he has quite a little belly he's working on. The reason being is, these fish are going to start spawning, and they're going to start moving into some very predictable routines.

They're going to move from that deep water lakes up to these main lake points, and they're going to start moving back into these creeks, these little secondary points, eventually into the flats and little points way in the back of coves to spawn. So, if you can intercept these fish with a bait like this little Smartbaits Smart Bomb, which I have rigged up a Neko Rig you can target some of these high percentage areas and you can intercept these fish as they're moving on their little routine to go to the back of these coves. And, you can really find some productive fishing and have a chance at catching some big fish at the healthiest time when they are just gorging. So, you're going to catch those PBs, those personal best fish that you can put up on Facebook, Instagram, all your social media stuff to impress your friends.

So, let's break down this nice little technique starting with rigging. A nail weight Neko rig, the idea is that you want that bait weighted in the front and you're going to be hopping that bait along the bottom. So, there's some ways to get that. Some cool little features you put on these baits to make that happen.

So, pour out a little stick bait like this Smartbaits Smart Bomb. First thing you need a weight in the front, right? So, it's called the nail weight rig. You can literally use a nail. If you want to just save some money go down to the hardware store and buy some nails. But these come in ... You can buy them actually made for this rig. And, you can do the Tungsten, because you can use some smaller weights. You can have a compact weight and you're not taking up as much space. Like I said, nails work. So, now you have that heavy side. You have that heavy weighted nose.

Then, what you want to do is you're going to put this O-ring right on the center. Once again, you can buy O-rings at pretty much any tackle shop, but if you want to save money just use a regular rubber band. You'll just have to double it over a bunch of times so it actually fits snug. Slide that down to about half way.

Now you got the weight here in the head. You've got the little O-ring there, and they you're going to have a little size 1 or 1/0 drop shot hook that will wide gap to you. You want a nice little bite to it, because you've got a lot of plastic here. If you have a small hook a lot of times they'll double up and you won't get the hook set.

Now, this is important, when you rig this up through the worm you want to go up towards the tail of it, okay? You don't want hook facing down or it won't run right and you won't get the hook ups you need. So, you go underneath the worm. You don't just go underneath the O-ring. You get a nice little bit piece of that worm, come up and go under the O-ring and look at that. That's going to be your bait. So, your final product looks just like that. And, when that bait is on the bottom the head is going to be jumping all along there, skirting along and that little tail is going to be working up and down. The Neko rig.

We're on the fishing [inaudible 00:04:22]. There we go. I'd like to draw my knife. Oh, I dropped the microphone. Testing, testing, can everyone hear me at home? We're good? Alright.

I was in the process of stripping down some clothes. I was going to put some suntan lotion on, and at the same time these fish were starting to feel frisky as well. Check that out guys, we came over to this little spot right here, because there's a nice gradual slope and point. So, these fish that come up deep, now that it's starting to get sunny ... As I'm taking clothes off they just move shallower and get that nice, warmer water. We came through a little corner, got bit and it actually ripped the worm in half. So, we kept making targets, because a lot of times these fish move up and move up in a similar area. That's why I said, there's predictable areas you can intersect them.

When you find a spot that's got fish chances are there's going to be plenty of fish. And, not only that, but if you catch fish there and you catch a few fish, and it doesn't feel like there's anymore, more will move up later. If you're in the area, it's like a road. They're like bus stops, because these fish are coming deep to shallow. They're going to use the same little areas. And, when you find a hot little spot keep fishing it. We're going to therapy to look for a hotter spot than this. This guy's not big enough yet, but still fat. Look at that big ole belly on him. He is eating. He's trying to be big. He's like, [Cal 00:05:56], Cal, give me another couple of years, man. It'll be easier to fish here, sooner than later.

The main idea is you want to keep this bait along the bottom and hopping along on its nose. Just slowly working the bottom, little tail up in the air. And, it looks like a little bait skirting along the bottom, feeding on the bottom and it basically looks like something that's not really paying attention.

So, you make long casts, either across or alongside like I'm doing right here along this little point. I'm really targeting that 20 to 35 foot depth. So, I want to put myself in that depth or shallower. So, once I see that this bait has hit the bottom, which it just did right there, I'm going to just slowly make little twitches with the top of the rod. I want to keep that line just semi-tight. And, when it starts to get a little bit loose then I reel in a little bit more line and I just keep that bait slowly moving along the bottom. Let that bait sink all the way back to bottom, because I want to make sure it's in contact with the bottom.

And, if you're not on the ... If you're finding it hard to stay on the bottom or near it then put a little heavier weight. It's a slow presentation, okay? You've got to really take your time on this thing so that's why it's very important to be in the right location, right? Because, you're really moving this slow.

So, let's now talk about the areas and location where these fish are going to be moving to. Now, winter time, the water's cold. The majority of the fish are going to be deep water, main lake, way off some main lake points, every once in awhile, moving up shallow. If it's real sunny, if we get a nice little warm spell they'll move up. They'll chase bait up and everything, but for the most part they're deep.

Now, eventually in the spring time they're going to end up the opposite side of things. They're going to end up very shallow, little flats, way in the back of coves where they're going to spawn. Now, at some point they've got to get from that deep water to that shallow water and that's what this time of the year is all about, is figuring out where those spots are going to be and then targeting them with effective baits where you can really slow down. And, because you have to slow down you really want to be in those high percentage areas.

Okay, if these fish are deep and they've got to get to shallow areas, where are the little bus stops? Where are those main areas those fish are going to go? And, first they're going to pull up on a lot of these bigger points that are at the mouths of coves, because they want to go back in those coves. So, they're going to start hanging out in those long, gradual sloping points and then they'll begin moving their way back. So, if you can fish along the sides of long, gradual points, like we're doing right now, those can be very productive.

Then, you can find spots on the spot on those areas. So, if you can find a log or a tree, maybe a big rock pile on the side of a long sloping ... A long, gradual sloping point that can be excellent. Then start moving in from there. As you look in do you see a little secondary point? Do you see any kind of trees out in the middle or an island out back in the middle of a cove? Then, go fish that, because those fish are going to slowly make their way to the backs and that's where you want to spend your time fishing this bait.

Oh, that's one, that's one. Oh, let's try to get him out of there. I don't think ... He is all over this tree right here. Oh, my snag, what's going on here? I think I'm ... This fish, I don't know if he's like oddly hooked or something. I'm just seeing his belly. There we go, there we go. There we go. Look it, long and skinny, dude. There was a time when I was long and skinny. Now, I'm kind of long and like a little bit peary.

This time of the year they are very predictable. You're out on the point. We didn't get bit. We slowly worked our way ... We're moving back into this cove and there's a giant tree right here. This is a great transition point for these fish to be hanging out. And, if you have a nice consistent bait like Smartbaits Smart Bomb, great little color, this red and watermelon green, you're going to catch some fish guys.

Anyway, hope you enjoyed this video. Go out and catch some fish on your own. Tag Lucky Tackle Box so we can see your adventures on Instagram, Facebook, all that jazz. Make sure you subscribe. Make sure you hit that thumb's up so people know that you enjoyed the video. Good luck you guys. And, I'm going to let this fish go. I will see you on the next one.


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