Fishing with Soft Plastics

When choosing baits for fishing, making the right choice can be very important if you want to land your catch. Soft plastics are just one of the many different types of baits which are on offer and there are many different reasons why people choose to use them.

Soft plastics are designed and made to look, taste and smell like the worm, baitfish, insect, grub or frog that they are trying to emulate.

One of the main advantages that soft plastics have over hard-bodied lures is that soft plastics feel far more natural. When a fish takes a soft plastic bait with a texture that feels like real food, the angler will have far more time to set their hook than they would do with a hard bait which did not feel all that much like food!

When fishing with soft plastics, it is possible to bury the point of the hook into the body of the bait without damaging the integrity of the bait. Whilst this will prevent your hook from snagging on objects in the water, the hook will easily penetrate through the bait once the hook has been set. If the plastic is not pre-scented, scent can be added before casting off – bottled paste attractants work well. The size of the spinning gear and spool which you choose to use will depend on what sort of fish you are hoping to catch, but soft plastics can be used with a range of weights and gauges, from ultra light spinning gear with low monofilament, right up to 80lb low stretch, abrasion resistance line.

A selection of Berkley Gulp Soft Plastics

A selection of Berkley Gulp Soft Plastics

Two popular ways to use soft plastic lures to catch fish

Swimming Technique

The easiest way to use soft plastics is to use the swimming technique. Just cast it out and gently swim it back in. Depending on what you are aiming to catch, you can alter how high your bait swims in the water by adding or subtracting weight. If you are just using soft plastic bait, then it will probably swim on the surface, but it is simple to weight it, if you want it to swim near to the bottom of the lake. Varying the speed of your swimming can increase the likelihood of strikes to your soft plastic lures.

Hopping Technique

Hopping is one of the most popular ways to use plastic lures, especially for those who are using soft plastic worm-shaped lures. You will need to weight the lure if you want it to sink all the way to the bottom of the lake or sea. Cast the lure out and let it sink to the bottom. Allow it to sit there for a few moments, watching the line carefully. If you do not see a tell-tale twitch, then lift your rod tip up to 12 o’clock to make the lure move forward and upwards, then drop the tip down to 3 o’clock to allow the lure to sink back to the bottom. Once you notice the twitch of a fish on your line, set your hook and reel the fish in!