TRR photos by Amanda Reed


Here is the fully assembled Whacky worm rig (shown with a red hook for emphasis, however a dark circle hook is preferred.)

Whacky Worm Rig 7/26/18

This week, I’m going to deviate slightly from the straightforward piece of tackle in order to share a very widely appreciated rig.  I was recently in Tom’s Bait and Tackle here in Narrowsburg picking up lures to try out when I got to talking with a river-guide named Mike. He informed me of some of the hot lures for spinning gear fishing on the river and suggested I try one in particular, the whacky worm rig. From what I understand this is a very common rig and many of the guides have had a great deal of luck with it, however I wasn’t going to share it with all you folks until I knew for myself just how it worked and of course, if it caught fish.

As Mike instructed, I purchased a whacky worm tool, some dark circle hooks, and a four inch worm, somewhat light in color with some glitter in it. I’m an artificial worm skeptic, and so I honestly wasn’t expecting too much from this setup, but Mike assured me that this was one of the top three producing lures on the River right now, and that it would also work in lakes.

To assemble the rig, one must tie a dark circle hook directly onto your line. Then insert the worm halfway into the whacky worm tool and slip an O-ring up the tool until it snaps around the middle of the worm. Once the O-ring is in place, skin-hook the worm length wise while hooking through the center of the O-ring section. Mike explained that because of the O-ring, when a fish bites the hook, the worm will slide up the line and not get lost during the battle, this way you can use the worm again. I appreciated that little perk considering the worms were almost a dollar a piece. Once you are hooked up, simply cast the worm out and let it sink. You want to give it as much line as possible so that it falls naturally to the bottom. After it reaches the bottom and rests for a few moments you can lift the rod and allow the worm to fall a short distance more, slowly repeating this process until you have reeled the worm all the way in.

From what I’m told this is primarily a bass rig to be used in deeper slower water, not in faster river currents. As I have little experience with the rig I won’t say anything about other species this can be used for, but I would recommend you go out and try it. If you happen to catch another type of fish with this rig I’d encourage you to send in a picture of your catch and perhaps a brief story about how you landed it.

*If you have any luck with the lure of the week, feel free to email your pictures to for an opportunity to share them on our website. If you have a favorite kind of lure we haven’t reviewed yet, feel free to send that lure to our office at PO box 150 Narrowsburg, NY 12764. We will add it to our weekly reviews and share the results. Check back each week on Mondays to see the new lure of the week!


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