The beauty of using bottom bouncers is that they’re versatile. You can fish bottom bouncers with spinners at two miles an hour and trigger bites with speed, or you can also slow down and fish them at half a mile an hour, a mile an hour, and use a little bit of finesse. A bottom bouncer simply keeps your presentation near the bottom.
Now, this particular summer, there have been cold fronts that last an extended period of time that brings cold weather and strong winds and sometimes with these cold fronts you have to react to the fish and slow down.
Therefore when you do have to fish bottom bouncers slow, there are a couple things that are important.
Don’t Use Rod Holders
A lot of times when fishing slower, it’s beneficial to hold on to the rod and set the hook yourself. When you start fishing bottom bouncers with speed, you can put them in the rod holders and go and catch fish with the rod holder, but when you’re fishing these slow, slow down. Hold on to the rod and use your wrist to set the hook.
Keep Your Rod at a 45 Degree Angle
The other thing is, is as you slow down, you want to use a heavy enough bottom bouncer to find the bottom and keep that line at about a 45 degree angle. If you let out too much line at slow speeds, the bottom bouncer is going to tip over. Therefore you want just enough weight and enough line out to barely tick the bottom.
A rule of thumb is one ounce for every ten feet of water. So when in ten or twelve feet, one ounce will work fine. When in twenty five feet, two to three ounces will work fine. Basically you want to keep your line at a 45 degree angle and just tick the bottom.
Use a Stiffer Rod
A baitcasting rod and reel setup can be beneficial when bottom bouncing. As for rods, don’t be afraid to use a stiffer rod setup, such as a medium heavy rod with an extra fast action tip.
A stiffer rod can be beneficial for a few reasons:
- When holding on to the rod, the rod power built up to the tip allows for a better hook set, especially in deeper water, when using heavier bottom bouncers.
- The other thing is when fishing on rocks, that stiffer rod will just pop that bottom bouncer through the rocks better.
Use a Baitcasting Reel
As far as a baitcasting reel, JMO worked with Scheels and developed the ultimate baitcasting reel for bottom bouncers and spinners, and it has a line counter and flipping switch. That way you can let out line and adjust line easily with just one hand by turning the reel handle and hitting the flipping switch. The line counter enables you to not only just repeat what’s working, but also allows you to fish more rods in the boat by staggering lines.
Use Braided Line
As far as the line for using bottom bouncers and spinners, use a 10 pound fireline. With the snell, it’s key to tie snells with heavy enough line to run true behind the bottom bouncer.
If you try to use too light of line on your snells, whether you’re using a plain hook or a spinner harness or butterfly blade, you’re going to get a twisted up snell. Therefore don’t be afraid to use a 14 pound snell when you’re using mono, whether you’re using a rig or using a spinner because that presentation is going to look a lot better to the fish.