Carolina Rig

Carolina Rig Diagram

The Carolina Rig is one of the most versatile fish catching rigs available to fishermen. You can fish a Carolina Rig in a variety of ways, but usually it is used to target bass on flats and in deep water. The beauty of a Carolina Rig is that it allows you to fish deep water quickly with heavy weight with no effect to the fish. When a fish takes the bait it can run with the bait with no resistance from the sinker due to the line freely slipping through the hole of the sinker.

The best places I have found to use a Carolina Rig is deep flats, humps, or points. The Carolina Rig will allow you to keep in contact with the bottom and feel the lightest of bites.

Carolina Rig Hot Spots

  • Weeded or Rocky Flats - Fish love to feed on deep rocky or weed infested flats and a Carolina Rig can quickly target these areas and pick up a few lunkers.
  • Humps - Fishing a Carolina Rig on a hump that resides in deep water can be a fantastic way to pick up some bass, especially if there are smallmouth that reside on that hump. Often when fishing a hump that is holding smallmouth I will Carolina Rig a finesse worm or 4 inch lizard.
  • Points - Fishing a Carolina Rig on a point will allow you to quickly target all areas of the point to determine if bass are holding on this point. This is one of my favorite ways to fish a lake that I've never fished before. I'll mark all the primary and secondary points on a topo map for an area of a unknown lake that I'm fishing and target them with a Carolina Rig. Often local fishermen will place brush piles or fish cribs on points and you can easily locate them with a Carolina Rig. If you can find a good brush pile on a point you can have a quick limit of bass in a tournament.

One thing that I have learned to do over the years when fishing a Carolina Rig is use a 7 foot bait casting rod with a good reel that can easily cast 1 to 2 oz of weight. I use a 7-foot Shimano Rod and a Shimano Calcutta reel for my Carolina Rigging. I also use 17 lb test to the Swivel then 12 lb test fluorocarbon to the bait. Your rig may differ depending on your lake, but the lakes I fish are deep clear water impoundments where line visibility matter. When you get a bite you will want to make a long sweeping pull to set the hook by reeling up the slack then by sweeping back to set the hook. Often your bait is in deep water with a lot of line out and a good hook set is critical, which is why I prefer a 7-foot rod.

So the next time the bass don't seem to be hanging around the usual spots in close try to move out and tie on a Carolina Rig you won't be disappointed.