When April rolls around, the Culprit T-Rex is a mainstay on my deck. While I sometimes have 10 rods rigged, the one bait I know is consistent is the T-Rex.
Bass in much of the country are heavy into the spawn, or in shallow water. Angling pressure is up, making a finesse presentation more productive.
While the T-Rex is not particularly fancy, you’ll notice it is a little easier to cast and is much longer lasting than other straight tail worms. It has some fine etching as well that fish can better sense.
I fish this worm in several manners depending on where I find fish.
The first is weightless with a 4/0 offset hook. I use this method covering water, much like a topwater bait, making the worm walk underwater. I’ll typically use spinning gear and 15-lb. braid with micro swivel to a 14-lb. leader about a foot long. This setup ensures you are not breaking line and getting good hooksets. This worm can also be used with bait casting gear if you prefer, 30-lb. braid or 14-lb. fluorocarbon works well.
Second is wacky style with a weight in one end. This is known as a neko rig. I first learned of this about 25 years ago fishing a tournament in Texas. Put an Eco Pro Tungsten Nail ‘em weight in the thick end and rig the hook point up away from the weight in the middle of the worm. Make sure the hook is up on the neko rig or it will snag. Use this rig to target fish of specific spots or beds. Basically I’m casting this out, letting it go to the bottom, sometimes with a couple of light twitches as it sinks. Once it hits bottom, I lightly twitch a few times, then reel in and cast to the next target. I’ll also use this rig as a followup bait to bass that strike other lures and miss.
Lastly is the shaky head. I’ll use this rig much the same as a neko, but in heavier cover and especially around docks. I pay special attention to the back corners. One-eighth ounce heads get most of the work and the same setup with line as fishing weightless.
So there you have it, the Culprit T-Rex is a must have for springtime bass fishing.