Fishing with Worms

 

Give a man a fish; you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish, and you have fed him for a lifetime…
(Chinese Proverb)

 

There is likely no more popular fishing bait on the planet than the good old worm, not the colorful persuadable things that bass fishermen use. No, I’m speaking of the real thing, a live worm and the best way to fish it. Some anglers think it’s as easy as buying a Styrofoam  or plastic container of worms (the Worm Haus uses cups made of recycled plastic for its baits on our water ways, please recycle), tying on a size 4 hook, and threading a worm onto it. Of course worm fishing can be done this way if you want too, but an angler can get a bit more resourceful and learn how to present their worm (live one, that is), naturally, by employing a set of gang hooks.


Worm fishing becomes much more when a set of gang hooks and ultra light gear are used. So what is a set of gang hooks? A set of gang hooks is simply two small hooks tied in tandem. You see, two small hooks tied in tandem allow the angler to present the worm in a completely natural way. The live worm that you’re fishing with ends up looking the same as if you took a live worm and through it in the water. A set of gang hooks is the only way to go worm fishing.


So how do you find gang hooks? You can buy them on the internet, some sportsman’s stores (if you can find them), from the Worm Haus, or with a little research you can tie them yourself. If you what to tie them yourself, simply do a little knot research (Snell knots) and you’ll be on your way. One should use small hooks (size 4 or 6), but size 8 seem to work well for worm fishing as well. If the hooks are too big, the presentation is lost while worm fishing.


The bottom line is that if you like worm fishing and catching more fish, gang hooks (pre-tied or bought), need to become a part of your fishing tackle. Using gang hooks and ultra light fishing gear, worm fishing becomes just as exciting as any other type of fishing claims to be. Gotta go, ones on the line!!!

 

Worm Fishing


Is there actually a secret for fishing with live worms? I'm sure many people would say no there's not. Too many people, simply "threading" a live worm onto a hook is good enough, but let me tell you, there is a secret that makes fishing with live worms much more successful.
That secret is called a set of gang hooks. A set of gang hooks is simply two small hooks tied in tandem, which enables a live worm to be presented in a totally natural manner. We learned that this natural presentation makes a big difference in the amount of bites, and hooked fish, that a person receives. When you think about it, this only makes sense. The more natural the worm looks, the more effective it will be as bait.
Gang hooks are, by far, the best way to present live worms as bait while fishing.  I personally can't imagine fishing with live worms without using gang hooks to rig them up. Gang hooks have become as much a part of my fishing gear as my rod and reel are. If I'm going to be fishing, I need to have some gang hooks with me.


If a set of pre-tied gang hooks is attached to your line using a small barrel swivel, then weighted with split shot sinkers and allowed to flow naturally with the current of a river or stream, the results are quite eye opening. I've been using this rig to catch crappie and smallmouth bass for years, and it works. This type of rig not only works, it works well. The same type of rig can be used under a bobber for pan fish, and even for still fishing by adding an egg sinker instead of split shots for weight.


The bottom line is that the secret for fishing with live worms is a set of pre-tied gang hooks. You can tie them yourself or purchase them ready to fish, it really makes little difference. What's important is that you begin using gang hooks for your live worm fishing now, rather than later. You'll be glad you did.

 

Worm fishing tips for all anglers:

 

Use Light Line - When using worms as bait for fishing, the lighter your fishing line is the more bites you will receive; it's as simple as that. This is especially true in cold, clear water where your line is highly visible to the fish. Most anglers use fishing line that's much too heavy for the fish they are trying to catch anyway. When fishing with worms use light fishing line.


Clean Your Hands - When fishing with worms (either live or synthetic) it is important that your hands are free of unnatural scents. Any unnatural scents that are present on your hands will transfer to your bait and cost you bites. The easiest way to accomplish this task is to wash your hands with odor neutralizing soap, or simply rub your hands in a handful of grass before baiting up. Either of these solutions will clean your hands of any unnatural scents that might be present.


Always Use Gang Hooks – The only way to present a live worm in a natural manner and still have it be effective is through the use of gang hooks. You see, gang hooks enable the angler to present a live worm in an outstretched manner, the way God intended, rather than "threaded" onto a single hook like some sort of worm ball. Gang Hooks are two small hooks tied in tandem, thus enabling the angler to present their live worm naturally. This method, when coupled with a small barrel swivel and split shot sinkers, is absolutely deadly in the flowing waters of rivers and streams. Presenting the live worm in a natural manner will result in more bites and more fish.


Be Eco-Friendly- When finished fishing, dump your extra worms in the water and not on the ground or bring them home and place them back in the worm composting bin for later use. Please do not dump extra worms on the ground. Some worm species are problematic in the forest lands or eco-system of our Mother Earth.

 

Be Efficient- Being as efficient as possible when fishing with live worms is important simply because the more time that you spend with your line in the water the better your chances are of catching a fish. When you're spending time digging through a Styrofoam or plastic container looking for worms to bait up with, you're not being efficient. The way to remedy this problem and become more efficient is by turning the container upside down (be careful with Styrofoam containers the lids don’t fit so well) and the worms will migrate to the top of the container.  This way your worms are literally at your fingertips waiting to be used. Finding the worms faster enables you to spend more time with your line in the water (where it should be), rather than looking for your worms in the container.

 

Gang hooks:


For those of you who have never heard of the term "gang-hooks", it's probably time for you to take a closer look at them. A set of gang hooks is fairly simple to tie yourself, or you can buy them, the choice is yours. What's important is that you begin using gang hooks for all of your live worm bait fishing. A set of gang hooks is, by far, the most natural way to present a worm.


Gang hooks are simply two small hooks tied in tandem. These hooks are probably much smaller than one might be accustomed to. I personally prefer size #10 hooks. My preference is two #10 hooks tied on four pound test. And I catch BIG fish with a setup that's this size. I consistently catch smallmouth bass and crappie on gang hooks setups exactly this size.


The only downfall to a gang hook setup is that some state regulations don't allow them. So check your state regulations before fishing with gang hooks. Check your local regulations before using them though, just to be safe.


So how do you get a hold of gang hooks? There are two ways. First you can do a little research on knots, and tie them yourself. This is obviously the most inexpensive way. Research the "Snell knot". The other way to get a hold of gang hooks is to just buy them. Go somewhere like Wal-Mart or Academy Stores and you'll be good to go. The choice is yours.


The bottom line is that if you begin employing gang hooks into your live worm bait fishing, you'll simply catch more fish. The natural presentation that gang hooks provide can't be beat. The days of the "worm ball" and threading a worm onto a hook are gone the moment you begin using gang hooks. With gang hooks, you simply hook the head on the worm into the top hook, the hook the second hook into the worms' body. Now your worm is rigged and looks exactly like it would if there were no hooks at all. It's a beautiful thing. Give gang hooks a chance; I promise that you won't be disappointed.

 

How to use gang hooks and worms:


Step 1
Attach a barrel swivel to the end of your fishing line. Use a small one, such as a size 10 or 12.


Step 2
Secure a gang hook to the end of the barrel swivel. A gang hook is 2 hooks tied in tandem. You can either tie your own or purchase them pre-tied.

 

Step 3
Put on a split shot sinker to add weight to your line. If you're fishing in a river or stream, this is necessary so the worm can bounce off the bottom as it drifts downstream.

 

Step 4
Add the live worm to your gang hooks. If you are using night crawlers you can fold them in half and attach them to the gang hook.

 

Step 5
Cast your worm rig. Allow the worm to slowly sink to the bottom and float downstream in a natural motion to attract the fish.


How to Tie The Snell Knot

 

The Snell Knot is a good knot to choose when fishing with a separate leader. It can only be used with a leader since it uses both ends of the line to tie it.


Instructions for tying the Snell Knot

 

  1. Feed one end of the leader through the hook's eye going 2-4 inches past the eye. Then feed the other end of the leader through the eye in the opposite direction. Hold the hook and leader ends between thumb and forefinger. Allow the excess leader to hang down in a large loop.
  2. Holding the hook and leader in your left hand, grab this excess leader loop and the part of this loop close to the hook and wrap it over the hook shank and both ends of the leader toward the hook's barb. Go around the hook 7 or 8 times, keeping the newly made wraps contained and tight with your left thumb. Pull the short end of the leader that is through the eyelet with your right hand slowly, until the entire loop of leader feeds through it. Be sure to continue holding the 7 or 8 loops with your left hand so the knot will not unravel.
  3. When it is almost tight, use your fingernails to slide it up against the eye of the hook. Finally, pull the short end of the leader and the standing line at the same time to completely tighten the knot. Trim the tag end.
  4. Tying the Snell Knot is complete.

 

Common Snell Knot