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Bass Lures For The Novice

Aug 13, 2008
If you are a novice wanting to explore the possibilities of using lures to harvest white, striped, large and smallmouth bass, the myriad of choices can seem daunting. But take heart. All is not lost.

While there are thousands of lure designs out there, bass lures can actually be broken down into 9 categories. They are:
Spoons
Jigs
Spinner-Baits
In-Line (French) Spinners
Crank Baits
Jerk Baits
Soft Baits
Top-Water
Flies

Spoons are just what the name suggests. An oval concave slab of metal, sometimes painted, or sometimes not, with a hole to tie line in on one side, and a hook on the other. Sometimes, they are made to be weedless for fishing in heavy cover.

They are very versatile, as they can be jigged, hopped, trolled, fished vertically or just cranked in. They usually have a wobbling action, and can be augmented with rubber tails, bodies or pork skins to enhance their appeal. They can be fished deep, or shallow. Spoons are most often used for vertical jigging in deep structure, mainly in cold water when bass are suspended and not very active.

They work best when bass are in tight structure, such as along a creek channel. Bass often bunch up in these areas. The technique is to locate suspended bass with a depth-finder, then jig the spoon up and down right in front of them. That is all there is to it. Alternatively, spoons can simply be cast, allowed to sink to the desired depth, and retrieved straight.

The drawbacks to spoons are the limited designs available. No matter what color they are, a spoon is basically a spoon. Some of the more well known brands are the Daredevil, Worth, Little Cleo, Johnson Silver Minnow, etc. Jigs are the most versatile lures available. They consist of a hook with a molded lead head on them. They can be dressed with feathers and fur, much like flies, or have plastic bodies of every shape imaginable placed on them, without removing the jig from the line. This makes it very rapid to change colors, sizes and styles on the water. Another type completely covers the jig head, and are referred to as tube lures.

Even real minnows and other live bait can be impaled on them, with very effective results. One of the top lures for bass in deep water is called a Jig & Pig, which is a jig with pork skin bodies on them. They can even have small spinners on them to provide extra flash. Jigs can be trolled, casted, flipped, vertically jigged, and even fished in tandem, under a bobber, or without one. They can be fished directly in heavy cover.

Spinner Baits are simply a jig on a safety-pin type wire, bent at a 90 degree angle, with one or more spinner blades on the end of the wire, and a hook on the other. The lead head rides between the two. They can be dressed with feathers, plastic bodies or bait, and fished shallow, deep or jigged. They are usually cast out and retrieved just under the surface, near cover. They are highly effective in the warm months. Popular models are made by Heddon, Strike King, and custom lure makers.
About the Author
Dan Eggertsen is a fishing researcher and enthusiast who is committed to providing the best bass fishing information possible. Get more information on
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