How do I chum for striped bass?

I’ve been told that clam chumming is effective for striped bass. Can you tell me how to do it?

The drawback to clam chumming is that you’ll probably be catching a lot of fish below the minimum with only an occasion fish that is actually a keeper. But if you’re not trying to fill your freezer, it is fun. If you can get a hold of clam bellies, you’ll want to use a thawed five gallon can and just dribble some over the stern of your boat. That will create a slick. Drift some of the bellies back about 150 feet using a 3/0 bait holder hook. If you don’t get a bite, reel it in and do it again. If you have trouble finding clam bellies, frozen clam chum is available commercially but if you’re using a lot of it, it can get expensive. To use the frozen chum, you’ll need a 5 gallon chum pot which you can either buy or make yourself. Cover it with an extremely fine mesh so you don’t let too much out at once and lower it off the stern. I prefer a 6 ½ medium bay rod and usually use a 15 lb test line on a bait caster. You’ll want to use a small black barrel swivel with about 2 feet of leader. Snell that to a 3/0 bait holder hook. For bait, I simply use fresh pieces of clam preferably with the soft belly on them. Using a free spooling technique let the line out off the back of the boat to about 150 feet. If you’re using more than one rod, use split to get them at different depths. It can take up to thirty minutes of chumming before you’ll actually get any strikes.

Daniel Eggertsen
Dan Eggertsen is a fellow saltwater fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on saltwater fishing since 2004.

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