Selecting the right lure is a dilemma an angler faces on each outing and made even more difficult with all the new lures introduced each year. Even as bait selection can be the key to fishing, there is nothing wrong with trying a new lure. But some lures are more suitable to a specific season and conditions at hand. One season we have just been through was spring and you may have found fish to be less picky during spring. Now that summer and hot weather is here these sunny hot conditions will have fish deeper or in cover during the day time hours but may be found shallow early and late in the day.
Refine your selections by paying attention to present conditions and what is going on in a lake. Several elements to consider are water color or clarity, type of structure or cover on a lake, type and size of baitfish or forage and the other element we factor in is our calendar prime times for best activity levels. Water temps are important during spring, but now that we are in summer season, this is less of a factor.
Many anglers just grab a handful of lures along with a couple of those latest or greatest "new" things when it may be best to just stick to some basics as you head out fishing. It can also be an expensive lesson to just buy the best looking baits when the most important factor is not the choice of baits but placing your bait in the right spot. We will try to list a few baits or lures to help you get started and sorry but we will also mention the companies that handle these lures we catch the most fish with.
Bulkier baits and more aggressive lure presentation works now as do rattle baits and if fish are scattered along break off flats, try crankbaits, chrome/ blue rat-L-traps or spinnerbaits. If heavy cover is present, try jig and pig or weedless plastics. If fish are in a less active or aggressive mood, go with baits that can be fished slowly such as suspending crankbaits, small spinnerbaits, soft plastic jerk baits, jig/pig or that great wacky worm.
As for plastics, we have become wacky worm junkies mainly because these baits will catch a lot of fish. But I also will often fish a worm weedless as well as a fluke which have produced some nice Bass for us. Even if you are not a worm fisherman, try weighted hooks that are easy, just tie it on, rig on the worm and fish.
Those that fished with us know there is always a crankbait involved in our fishing and we prefer suspending bait most of the time that we can pause in place. If I am fishing around timber, I will use a floating crankbait and last year we have replaced the front hook with a red treble hook on several. One other point is I like to have a crankbait that will run deep enough to bump bottom or other objects while fishing it.
There are hundreds of different spinnerbaits but try the basic gold blades for overcast conditions and silver for bright days and if you just want to catch fish, try smaller baits with white/chartreuse skirts. Even Beetle-Spins work well and will catch many different types of fish. We find Markey’s Lures tough small spinnerbait, the Bellydancer with the spinner blade suspended below bait to be a fish catching lure that we now use mostly with a paddle tail trailer with good results.
If you know us very well, a must is a topwater walking chugging bait and/or buzzbaits and Linda finds the late Bob Folder pearl tinsel buzzbait to be awesome and the smallmouth love them. It is easy to get into the “big bait, big fish” frame of mind and these can be intimidating, but a down-sized version will catch fish.
And lastly for panfish and/or most all fish, the FIZARDS is an exciting new moldable fish attractant with the fizzing and scent dispersion technology that truly catches fish. Read more in our products reviews or visit fizards.com for more tips, great videos and more.
Fishing is more than just luck, even though an element of luck may help, now that you have made the best bait selection, your next step is to improve on putting that bait in the right spot (maybe we can talk about that next month). This should be enough to keep you busy catching fish and remember to Take A Kid Fishing.
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Till Next Time GOD BLESS & GOOD FISHING !