I have to admit this isn’t something I had thought of doing, but it’s one of those “Why didn’t I think of that?” moments when you hear of others trying it.
By swimming a drop-shot rig, you’re taking advantage of the weight to reach fish in greater depths. By adjusting the speed of your retrieve or the amount of weight you use, you can control whether you’re hugging the bottom with the lure, or hovering at depths a few feet off of the bottom to hang into some of the fish that may be suspended against ledges or other cover.
You can either swim the bait at a steady pace to mimic a swimming baitfish, or you can twitch the tip of your rod to get some up and down motions with the lure that drive bass wild.
My favorite drop shot weight was always the Bullet “Drop Shot” weight, but I recently switched to the XCaliber drop shot because it’s tungsten. One of the reasons I’ve always gone with this style is they’re made to break away if snagged in a rock or something equally unyielding. You lose the weight, but not the rest of your rig. There are several other types of weights available that fit this purpose; I’ve just never tried other shapes. I’ve been meaning to try the Water Gremlin Pencil Lead weight, but haven’t done so. I would love to hear from anyone who has.
Keep in mind that when you want to swim a drop shot in twenty feet of water, you’ll need to make very long casts and give enough slack for the lure to reach the bottom. You’ll want to make sure you keep in contact with the bottom, and if you lose contact, pause for a couple seconds till you feel that weight hit again. You’ll want to use a lighter weight line, maybe 6 lb., but a powerful rod. Hooksets will take effort at these depths, so you’ll need a meaty rod to be able to handle the aggressive set.
Some of the soft plastics I’ve tried are Kalin’s grubs, Berkley “Power Grub”, Persuader “Bass Bait”, Roboworm “Alive Shad”, YUM “Dinger”, and Yamamoto “Shad Shape Worm”.
One thing to remember is that after you get to depths of much more than 25’, it gets pretty hard to swim a drop shot rig. At these depths you’re going to be pretty much vertical, and that doesn’t lend anything to your presentation.
I’ve only tried this presentation twice, and it did bring some results. I’m very anxious to try it out again…SOON!