How to Rig a Leader Dropper

Our fishing expert explains how you can rig split shot so you catch more largemouth bass and lose fewer bait rigs.

Pete Sucheski

Trout and walleye fishing picks up in many rivers during March, even though waters are seasonably cold and running high. Drifting weighted baits along the bottom can be the key to catching fish but invites hangups. You can save both tackle and time by using a leader dropper for your split-shot sinkers. Tie a splicing knot, such as a Blood knot, in your line about 18 inches above the hook. Leave one tag end untrimmed, about 6 inches long. Pinch split shot on that tag end instead of on the main line. When the weights snag on the bottom, pulling on the line causes the split shot to slide free of the dropper. You won't have to break your main line, and you'll lose baits far less often.