Reader Tips: Make Your Own Baitsicle

I put pre-rigged whole baits into plastic cups with a mixture of chum and water and freeze them...

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Bottomfishermen have all lost baits to stealers like pinfish and triggerfish during the drop. Here's a frozen treat to keep the thieves away and attract big bottom dwellers. The night before I go fishing, I put pre-rigged whole baits into plastic cups with a mixture of chum and water and freeze them. Once on the water and ready to drop, I attach the rig, remove the plastic cup and send the baitsicle down. Surface fish will attack during the descent, but the hard, frozen surface protects the bait. After the bait's descent, the buoyancy of the ice holds it off of the bottom, and the gradual melting causes a chum release, letting the big ones know there's a meal in the area.

James Victory
Gautier, Mississippi