Senkos are Versatile
With today's line up of Yamamoto Senkos, the options and techniques that can be used with these baits is endless. Only one's lack of imagination is your limit. By far, the most common use is fishing them weightless, either hooking them Texas style or wacky riggin. For me, the weightless technique is by far the most successful when used in the spring. But as seasons change, so do the characteristics of a bass. Their feeding habits change, as do their location through out a lake’s water column.
As the fish begin to move into their post spawn/Summer patterns, they do start to move out to deeper water. While out there, they will typically do one of three things, hang around some form of a structural change, congregate on a piece of primary cover near or on a structural change, or they will suspend.
There are a number of techniques I use to be able to catch these fish using Senkos. They all have one thing in common, they require some form of a weight that allows me to git that bait into their strike zone. Here's what I would do with the three situations mentioned above:
Fish holding to structure on the bottom: This is where bottom bouncing a Senko can be deadly! I'll use a C-Rig with a 9 series Senko to start. Chuck and wind, cover as much water as possible attempting to locate the fish and at what depth they are holding. Once I find a group of fish, I might change to a Texas rig or dart head rig if the fish become somewhat inactive. If they git real finicky, then I slow way down with a MOJO (split-shot) type rig with a 9S or 9J.
Fish holding to Cover: Texas riggin is ideal here. It allows you to fish right into the cover in the event that the fish are tucked deep in the cover, as well as to work the less dense areas outside the cover. If ya find the fish are hangin on the outer edges, kinda suspending maybe, the dart head application works great. Also, a dropshot rig can be killer on these fish hangin' around the cover and not directly in it. When fishing near cover, I prefer to use a circle type hook, versus the standard dropshot hooks. The reason being is, these smaller hooks, like a Yamamoto Splitshot Hook, can be inserted into the Senko so the hook point is not exposed, making your bait somewhat more weedless, which will prevent too many snag ups.
Suspending fish - Here the dropshot Senko is king. You can either nose hook or wacky rig your Senkos. If I'm fishing open water with no cover, I'll use a #1 or #2 Circle or Octopus type hook. Again rigging the Senko either by the nose or wacky style. Which method is preferred is determined by the fish's willingness to strike one or the other. When attaching your weight, be sure to leave enough of a tag to vary the length that your bait sits off the bottom. It's a lot easier to shorten this distance than increase it once you start fishing. I generally will start out with about a 30" distance and go down closer to the bottom until I git bit. Locating fish on your electronics can help you with your starting point. Rigging it wacky, will provide more action. For a slower more subtle presentation, rig it via the nose. One thing to remember when using these types of hooks, there is no need to slam em with a hook set, just reel and provide tension, the hook and fish will do the rest. Also I like to use the dart head here too. I can fish a dart very effective at all depth ranges.
Try these options and let us know how they work for you. Over the years they've all worked at one time or another for me.