The revolution in electronics allows anglers unprecedented access to bass that inhabit deep structure. Years ago, unless you put hours in practicing, you weren’t going to find fish offshore. Now, any novice with a GPS can find the best humps, ledges, and rock piles with the touch of a button.
What that means is that offshore bass are getting more and more pressure. In the old days, once you found them, getting them to bite was more of a “when” than “if” proposition, as they were probably un-fished and hungry. Now, offshore bass have seen every crankbait you can imagine and turn their noses up at football jigs and Carolina rigs.
Enter the wobble head.
Essentially a heavy football jig with a swivel between the weight and hook, the wobble head jig gives anglers another way to target bass on offshore structure – one that they haven’t seen nearly as often.
The key to the wobble head is the free swinging action imparted by the swivel between the weight and hook. When reeled slowly along the bottom, it creates a really natural looking “slithering” action that draws major interest.
Here’s how to rig and fish it:
Rig it: The ideal wobble head rod is long, at least 7 to 7 ½ feet long, with a fast to moderate-fast tip and a medium-heavy to heavy power. Good Carolina rig and football jig rods will also work well for throwing a wobble head. Pair the rod to a high speed (at least 6.4:1) reel spooled with 15 – 20 pound fluorocarbon.
In 5 – 10 feet of water, a ½ ounce wobble head is ideal, but move up to ¾ ounce in 15 – 20 feet of water, and 1 ounce deeper than that. The goal is to have enough weight to keep it on the bottom throughout the retrieve.
At the business end, rig a VileCraw weedless. It’s flapping action while swimming makes it the ideal wobble head bait.
Fish it: Make long casts to likely offshore structure like points, rock piles, humps, ledges, shell beds, or bars. Let the bait fall to the bottom on slack line so it doesn’t pendulum toward you. Once on bottom, hold the rod tip down and to the side and slowly reel it in, dragging lightly along the bottom the whole way. Bottom contact is key – if you’re not feeling the bottom most of the time, go heavier. If you’re “dredging” and getting hung a lot, lighten up.
It’s really that simple. Strikes will usually feel like a Carolina rig bite, but pay attention because sometimes they grab it while swimming towards you – which means the line suddenly goes slack. Once you get a fish, reel down and sweep hard to one side. The key to feeling bites is to keep the rod to the side, if you reel straight in you’ll miss a lot of strikes.