After 176 B.A.S.S. tournaments, Greg Hackney has invented a new fishing term probably unfamiliar to even the most avid anglers. He calls it “plinking” - a word normally applied to shooting a .22 caliber rifle at random targets like bottles and cans.
However for Hackney, “plinking” applies to making soft underhand pitch casts with a relatively light worm weight on a Texas-rigged soft plastic lure.
“Anytime I’m just moving super slow and methodical pitching to every little target I come to with a light weight, I call that “plinking”,” grinned the 2014 Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year.
The Gonzales, Louisiana pro has “plinked” his way to yet another Top 12 this week on famed Kentucky Lake by focusing on super shallow bushes in less than 2’ of water.
His best stringer of the event thus far weighed 19 pounds, and he planned to spend “Championship Monday” doing more of the same with a Strike King Structure Bug threaded on a 5/0 Hack Attack Flippin’ Hook tied to 65-pound braid.
He uses a large spooled Quantum Smoke HD or Smoke S3 in a 7.3:1 gear ratio for fast line pick-up once a bite occurs. A 7’ 6” TourPT rod provides plenty of leverage to get fish from the flooded buck brush.
Hackney is also one of the few Elite Series anglers that uses braid nearly exclusively when pitchin’, flippin’, and “plinkin’”. “Guys that say they don’t get as many bites with braid compared to fluorocarbon have got kind of a mental hang-up in my opinion, because I’ve never seen that be the case, and there’s so many more advantages to braid,” says Hackney.
“I use braid every time I’m fishing heavy cover – whether it’s wood, grass, or whatever. And I’ll also tell you that fatter braid like 65-pound test actually slides over limbs better than fluorocarbon or mono with a lot less hang-ups. Plus, I get to fish pretty much all day without ever retying,” he emphasizes.
Known best for this style of shallow water, heavy cover fishing, Hackney says his favorite way to catch a bass is with a topwater frog, but this is a close second.
“I mean look, it’s pretty tough to beat the up-close-and-personal approach I’ve used this week, when you’re dragging ‘em out of bushes in less than 2-feet of water with 25-feet of line,” said Hackney just before pushing away from the dock at Paris Landing Marina for another great day of “plinkin’.”