Back in the days, the first trout that I caught, I used worms as bait. Nowadays, people are using different types of lures, powerbaits, flies, etc. Even after all of these years, trout fishing with worms remains one of my favorite method of fishing to this day.
In this article, I’m going to show you how you can catch a ton of trout by using the best trout worms as bait. I have thousands of different flies, natural baits and lures for catching trout. But nothing gets me more excited that hooking live worms and casting.
Standing on the shore of a fast-flowing stream and drifting a humble scrub worm or a nightcrawler into the quiet backwater is still one of my favorites. However, keep in mind that if worms are not naturally occurring in the environment, you are not likely to catch trout on worms.
Let me show you how you can successfully fish for trout with worms, how to put the worm on the hook, the right fishhook size, proper trout fishing rig and many more.
Do Trout Worms Actually Work?
Undoubtedly, worms are one of the most natural and highly reliable baits that you can for trout fishing. You can buy live worms in your local tackle store or you can do some digging and collect them yourself.
The problem with natural worms is that they need to be kept alive and fresh. That’s the only major drawback they have. You need to either buy them fresh or keep the leftover alive after fishing if you want to use them on your next fishing trip.
This can be a bit pain though. Who knows when you will go fishing next or what will be the water conditions of the fishing spot, you need to make changes to your rig quickly to suit them.
Also, your local tackle store might run out of stock when you need them. This is where plastic worms shine the most. They are an artificial bait that is used for trout fishing to solve these logistical issues.
You can keep these worms in your tackle box and can use them at a moments notice. They also have a pretty long shelf life. If you buy them in bulk, it will be long before you run out of worms.
They are also very easy to rig and can be a fun little experience your kids and a great way to introduce bait fishing to your little ones.
Top 7 Best Trout Worms
Here are some live worms that you can easily use for your next fishing trip.
1. European Nightcrawlers, 1 LB Live Worms
There are approximately 300 worms per pound. Sometimes you will get even more if the worms are being pulled out of a younger bin. When not in use for fishing, you can use them in garden beds because they are top feeders and do a wonderful job of composting the soil.
They are also good breeders and multiply well. Not as fast as redworms but they do get bigger than expected. The best part is, you can dig up what you need to fish and keep the rest inside the garden bed.
2. HomeGrownWorms – European Nightcrawlers
- Live Delivery Guaranteed! If your worms don't make the trip - We'll replace with no questions asked!
- NO NEED TO REFRIGERATE! These Nightcrawlers thrive in temperatures between 60-80 Degrees Fahrenheit! And With your INCLUDED FREE Bait Container - simply keep until your next Fishing Trip! No More...
- Help Out Your Garden! Place These Aeration Machines in Your Garden and Watch the Difference!
- No More "Fake" Baits! Stop Trying To Emulate Real Baits and Start Using Real Baits!
- Catch Fish! These Bait Size (2"-4") European Night Crawlers have been used for Centuries to Catch Tons of Big Fish
There is no doubt that European Nightcrawlers make for a great bait and they catch a lot of fish when they are fresh and alive. Buying live baits online can be risky but if you buy them from HomeGrownWorms, they will guarantee live delivery.
You don’t need to refrigerate these nightcrawlers. They can easily thrive in temperatures 60 – 80 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition to that, you will also get a free live bait container.
3. Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm European Nightcrawlers
- They grow to be 3-8 inches long, and are 2 or 3 times bigger than their smaller cousins, the red wigglers (Eisenia Fotida).
- The euros are certainly better for larger foods that aren't as broken down, or for leaves and other tougher material that has not been pre-composted.
- Can be successfully introduced to most garden environments. They are mid range dwellers and will till and aerate your soil for you, while supplying valuable castings.
- This pack contains approximately 650 worms to a pound.
The European Nightcrawlers from Uncle Jim’s worm farm can grow to 3 to 8 inches long and they are two to three times bigger than the red wigglers, their smaller cousins. When not working as bait, they will work for you in the garden.
This pack contains approximately 1300 worms. These worms are also known as the Giant Redworm. They can easily survive brackish saltwater and are very cold resistant.
4. Bestbait.com Canadian Nightcrawlers
These are Canadian nightcrawlers that are almost similar to their European cousin. They will last for months if you keep them refrigerated and change their bedding monthly.
These are quality nightcrawlers that make for excellent fishing bait. For storage purpose, you can keep them into a 40-degree bait fridge inside your basement. They are huge and live better in mild cooler climates.
Here are some of the best plastic worms for trout that are artificially scented and work really well.
5. Berkley PowerBait Trout Worms
This powerbait trout worm from Berkley comes in a package of 10. It’s the newest addition to their Chigger family of baits. It is super high and wide with fast-paced action. Simply pitch it, rig it on a hook or a jig head and use it as a trailer.
For the 3-inch work, there are 15 in each pack and there are 13 worms for the 7-inch. These feel and smell like real worms and they do catch a lot of fish. They are made for light tackle and best used for rivers and streams.
6. Berkley Gulp Mini Earthworms
- Made using the highest quality materials
- Engineered to help anglers catch more fish
- The most trusted name in all fishing gear
- Great for many species
- Features Gulp extreme scent dispersion
- It is biodegradable
- Available in brown color and 4-inch size
- This product weighs 1.1-ounce
It’s a biodegradable soft blade from Berkley that features Gulp extreme scent dispersion. It is great for many species including trout, bass, crappie, and panfish. This bait is made using the highest quality of materials and helps anglers catch more fish.
Given the right condition, this bait can outfish all other baits. Unlike ordinary plastic bait, Gulp has 400 times more scent dispersion that greatly expands the strike zone. This is will allow you to greatly increase your catch rate.
7. Lip Ripperz Trout Wormz
- Great drops hot
- Great on jig heads
- Add Lip Ripperz Love Sauce for added attraction
- Lifelike action in the water
- 10 per pack
These plastic worms drop hot and the best hook-up for trout I’ve seen so far. Try changing the colors if you don’t get a bit in 3 casts. You can use them in various conditions. These worms are great on jig heads.
You can also add Lip Ripperz Love Sauce for increased attraction. They also have a lifelike action under water and a great artificial bait for crappie, steelhead, bass, and trout.
Trout Fishing Tips – How to Fish with Plastic Worms
Plastic worms are pretty simple because they provide all of the catching potential and scent of natural worms without any of the maintenance or mess. I know they are not the most glamorous lures out there, but they do a great job of catching trout.
These worms have been in use for bass fishing for quite a while now. Unfortunately, trout anglers have been kind of slow on this method. They just don’t seem to realize the potential of these baits.
Nowadays, all of the plastic worms have a fairly natural action and they are also scientifically developed to give off an artificial scent that spreads quickly and entices trout to strike hard and fast.
There is actually nothing scientific about plastic trout worms. They are just deadly for trout. It is due to the fact that they make for quick, no mess, no fuss fishing trip with great catch rate. You just tie up a quick rig, pick a worm and pop on one.
Some of them might look odd, but the action underwater is very similar to a real live worm. They also work really well against shy or spooked trout. The trout cannot resist the scent on the worms.
This scent draws the fish out.
When it comes to bait selection there are a few basics that I tend to stick to. Here are the following criteria to follow when buying plastic worms.
Picking the Right Color
As you know by now, there are some many different types of trout worm out there. Most of the time, it is very confusing to choose the right color for the right environment. Let me make this clear.
It depends on the water.
Grasshopper green, white, and chartreuse work best in green or blue stained water. Stick to red, yellow or orange in muddy water or you can use black and brown worms.
Only in clear water, you can use just about anything. For me, I have found that pink works the best in clear water.
You should always go for floating worms. You want the worms itself to float up from the river bed even if you use lead shot to pull the bait down.
Scented artificial baits will lure out trout that are lurking underneath rocks or muddy areas. The scent that that bait spreads can draw in even the cagiest trout.
Don’t use large worms. Stick with something that has about 75mm in length. For trout fishing, you don’t need huge worms.
You can get all the shapes and sizes you want, but trout are notoriously fussy eaters and they are also very sharp. When it comes to plastic worms, you should stick to the most natural looking bait in the bag.
Because trout have great vision and in clear water, the more natural the bait look, the more chance you will have of landing that prized trout.
3-inches is perfect for most trout. So, stick to that and don’t go for anything larger. If you feel like you are not getting any bites, try dropping down the hook size and chop the worm down to half the original size.
You should also take a look at the environment that you are in. As I have said before, if worms are not naturally occurring in the environment, you are not likely to catch trout on worms.
For this type of fishing, working along the banks of fast-moving streams or rivers is ideal. It is because there are always going to be live worms in the water. There will always be worms that get washed away in the river and a hungry trout will not be far behind.
For catch and release, try barbless hook. A size #10 should be perfect. If you want to know more about hooks, see the best hooks for trout article that I have published recently.
You can check out our full review there and get yourself set up for your next fishing trip.
Trout Fishing Techniques with Worms
First of all, when you reach the river, have a good look around first and pick the suitable spot to drop the bait. Keep your distance from the edge of the river. You don’t want to spook any of the fish.
Start in a place where there are big rocks and hollows. You can also drop your bait on that place where the flow of water goes from fast to slow. The fish will wait in these locations for their prey.
If you drop a worm in there and let it float down to the river path, a fish will surely go for the bait. You can also add a little weight with the floating worms, to get the worm down to their level quicker.
There are two common rig setups that are widely used by trout anglers. They are:
1. Carolina Rig For Trout
2. Wacky Rig For Trout
The Carolina rig has a similar basic setup and style to the Texas Rig. The only difference is you set a small barrel weight above the line and attach a swivel. This setup will give the worm a more natural action in the water.
The Wacky rig is the most basic way to hook up your trout worm. Just stick the hook through the middle of the body and let it wiggle. This technique gives the worm a more natural presentation as it runs through the water.
Whether you fish with live worms or plastic worms, as long as you get the best trout worms, you are sure to catch a lot of fish.