It’s so hot in the Mid-South right now that jumping in the lake wouldn’t really cool you off. Water surface temps near my house in Western Kentucky are 85 to 90 degrees.
But the good news is, big bass are still catchable in this heat if you feed them the right meal. And in my opinion, there are very few lures they eat better in this extreme heat than a big plastic worm – like an 8-inch Bull Worm from Strike King.
There are two reasons I have a ton of confidence in the Bull Worm during these fishing days when you start sweating at sunrise. First, it’s different than the standard ribbontail plastic worm that so many anglers use during the summer. Big bass have grown accustomed to seeing a bunch of those by this late in the summer, so the Bull Worm is a little something new they’re more susceptible to bite.
The Bull Worm is essentially a meaty straight-tailed worm with a beveled bubble at the end of the tail, and generally speaking, it has a real unaggressive action to provide the kind of slow moving easy meal that lazy summer bass seem to prefer.
Secondly, I like a Bull Worm because I can rig it so many different ways – and use it around so many different depths and habitat. Of course, the most common way is a Texas rig with a bullet shaped 1/2-ounce weight. This is my favorite way to rig it around brush piles or around laydown trees and bushes near the shoreline.
If I’m dragging it around those mid-ranges in 5 to 12 feet of water, I use a heavy Shaky Head or Strike King Tour Grade Mag Jig Head similar to what you see in the attached photo. It features an oversized hook that matches well with the meaty Bull Worm.
It comes in sizes all the way up to 3/4-ounce for use in the deeper water, and gets through the lake bottom structure very snag-free.
If I’m fishing away from the shoreline in the depths of 12 to 25 feet, where bass tend to school up at this time of year, then a Bull Worm works great on a Carolina Rig with a big 3/4-ounce egg sinker. For the main line, I like 17-pound test, but for the leader, I use 15-pound monofilament, because the lighter mono tends to help float the Bull Worm off the bottom a little better.
As far as my favorite colors, if I had to pick two, it’s hard to beat green pumpkin or junebug.
Until next time, when hopefully the heat won’t be quite so excessive, tie on a meaty Bull Worm for hot summer bass fishing.