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Senko Fishing - Part I
By Jason W. Norris

Many of you have heard of the popular Senko lure. What is the Senko? The answer is simple, yet not so simple.

Made by Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits, the Yamasenko, or "Senko" is a plastic worm; a jerk bait; a stick bait; a very versatile bait that has proven to be very effective at catching fish.

Let me first say that I'm in no way doing an ad for Senko's. Quite simply, I've found great success with this bait and write this rudimentary article about it as a result of the several inquiries about it from fellow fishermen.

Basically, the Senko is a soft plastic worm bait. What makes it different is that the simple design of this bait is what makes it so versatile. It is heavier than most plastic worms and is generally meant to be fished weightless. The Senko acts more like a dying minnow than it does as a worm imitator. Compared to other baits, it is most similar to a Slug-Go, only heavier. This allows for fantastic casting ability (especially weightless), with more options for retrieve than the Slug-go.

Like I said, the Senko is a "simple" bait and THIS is what makes it effective. Upon casting, the Senko stays in a horizontal position while falling. A twitch or two of the fishing rod then makes it look just like a minnow. The soft plastic body has a very natural look which seems irresistible to fish, especially bass.

A basic Texas-rig, without the weight is the way to go. Cast, let it fall a bit, twitch it - make it "come alive"; this is the essence of how to work the Senko. Of course, fish like different things at different times so that is where you get creative.

There are other ways to rig the Senko as well as other techniques that are effective which I will be covering in future articles.
 

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I second that!!! IMHO, what makes the senko so effective, as Jason mentioned, is the horizontal fall. But it doesn't just fall, it performs a very unique life-like wobble that cause the fish to go bonkers for senkos. Boy, I think I'm gonna have to sell that one to Mr. Yamamoto for their new slogan!! :D
I also love the action when retrieving it jerk style. Man, they look so life like in the water. They are salt injected too so they hold on longer and eat them. They do look kinda tasty cause sometimes I want to chomp on them myself. :wink:
 

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Great article and thanks for the tip hope i can pick some up before the outing, i've yet to land a lm or sm bass... so what colors and where can i pick up these tasty treats?
 

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shirleys or dicks has em. i like green pumpkin/black flakes. whites and blacks are also standard colors. yamamotos comes in all shapes and sizes. you want the "yamasenkos". it looks like a writing pen. and i've heard that mr. yamamoto designed them after a bic pen.

Augy
 

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Nice article Jason :wink: I must of passed over your sticky a bunch of times without realizing it was there. Last year was my first with the senko and it took quite a few fish. I like to rig it weedless and work it like I do with nightcrawlers or leeches. That consists of casting it out and letting the line freespool till it hit bottom. I will give it a few jerks, pick up a small amount of slack, and let it free fall to the bottom again. Sometimes a retrieve for me can take a couple of minutes if I am working over water that I know is holding fish. When I first bought the baits I had the tendency to move them too fast, and also to set the hook too fast. This led to many missed fish and boils where I was pulling the bait away from the fish. Like Jason said, its closest relative is probably the sluggo. I never really let the sluggo hit the bottom, and the hits would usually come on the free fall, right before I twitched it. It took me some time to figure out the senko is more versatile and a different approach suited me better for the senko. There are many different options to work them though, but I think it comes down to confidence. I quit using them around mid summer, but I bet I could of still caught some fish fishing it faster, right over the weeds. It is hard not to recommend this bait, because even begineers can have some success with it. Hopefully the senko will take many fish for us this year guys :D
 

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when you fish swim senkos are they completely weightless on just a plain off shank hook

Becuase i have some hooks with weights on them called Gamakastu vertical jig hook

would those work

or do i just fish them completely weedless
 

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Big rick showed me a tool for the senko its a tube with o rings and you use it wacky rigged instead of hookin the circle hook through the senko it goes between the o ring and the senko seemed to be pretty effective and it didnt destroy the bait so he could use the bait in essence longer
 

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Yeah, clearly if you are fishing them wacky, find some O-rings because you will catch 3-4 times more fish per pack of baits... And like what was said, they ain't cheap...

BPM
 

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another idea for you guys when your senko's start to open up after the first fish is to start using mend it. I usually don't use yamamoto senko's due to how expensive they are, and usually go with some sort of knock off.

Out of all the companies I've used so far with stick baits, this guy has some awesome ones he makes out of green bay. http://www.getbitbaits.com if you guys don't except links you can delete this. I recieved a few to try and they are still heavy and have that quicker fall like the yamamoto senko, but his are made of a plastic that is a lot stronger but also still soft.
 

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If you've got Comcast cable there's a very informative video on Wacky Worming on Versus On Demand. The In Fishermen guys are fishing with Berkeleys' Senko type bait in deep water for largemouth bass. Good tips and great underwater footage.
 

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setdahook said:
If you've got Comcast cable there's a very informative video on Wacky Worming on Versus On Demand. The In Fishermen guys are fishing with Berkeleys' Senko type bait in deep water for largemouth bass. Good tips and great underwater footage.
Thanks for the heads up, I'm watching it now!
 

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What do you mean Tony? I just turned on Versus and "Whacked" is on... Nothing on Wacky Worming!!! :roll:

BPM
 

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I know but when I flipped Versus on now, I thought it was pretty funny that "Whacked" was on... And next month catch a bigger fish!!!!!!!

BPM
 

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I have 10 lb fluoro on my spinning rod. I've been fishing at Beck and in Northern Wisconsin. They both have a ton of weeds. I was thinking maybe a braid for my new rod?
 

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Briad has a lot more visibility, but also more sensitivity. If you go with braid, I suggest a fluoro leader for sure.
 
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