4 best bass fishing baits

If you are targeting bass, the only bait you need concern yourself with is lures. Black Bass are very active predators, and have uncontrollable attack triggers when the right stimuli is received. Lures out-perform live bait for bass at least 5 to one. There are a few reasons for this. One is that a hooked bait does not act like natural prey. It doesn’t move much, or cover much territory. Bass like to pounce viciously on moving, unsuspecting snacks. Hooked bait does not make the same sounds as prey, nor put as most commotion in the water. All of these trigger strikes from bass. Lures, on the other hand, supply all of this, and more….

Out of all the different types of bass lures on the market, 4 deserve special mention.
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 jighead, and are reffered 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.
Undoubtedly, the most outstanding bass lure has to be the plastic worm. Invented by Nick Cr?me, in 1949, it is still THE top bass producer of all-time. Cremes original product, the Wiggle Worm, is still in production 61 years later, now called the Scoundrel. There have been a few modifications, such as Mann’s Jelly worm in the 1960s, and Mister Twister in the 1970s, but the basic lure remains virtually unchanged. Today, plastic bodies are made in the shape of almost anything that swims, and some things that have only existed in nightmares! Plastic lures can be fished at any depth, any speed and in an6y cover, no matter how thick. And the most popular way to use them is Texas-rigged, which became popular in the late 1960s. This is where the worm is rigged below a slip sinker, with the hook point buried in the worm body, making it 100% weedless. Now, plastic worms are marketed by companies like Culprit, Bagleys, Rebel, Lindy, and many others. Plastic worms are the single most cost-effective way to put bass in your boat, or creel. Compared to all other lures, they cost a pittance. I A crank bait comes in several designs. The most common is a hard plastic, or balsa wood body that resembles a ‘pregnant’ perch. They are painted to match various baitfish and crustaceans. They have a plastic lip at the front that imparts a violent wiggling motion to the lure on the retrieves, and sometimes makes them dive rapidly, depending on the design. They are usually fished deep near structure, and are simply cast out and retrieved. Other types have minnow, or thin shaped bodies, or even look like a boomerang (Lazy Ike), but they all work the same. They work best on schooling bass. The most well known of these types of lures is Rapala. Other models are Heddon, Fred Arbogast, Tom Mann, and custom lure makers.
Now we come to 2nd most fun way to catch bass. Top Water lures are just what the name implies, a plastic lure that floats on top of the water. Most have a cupped head, or lips attached that makes a loud splash, or pop, when jerked. This attracts bass from great distances, and incites them into a murderous rage at times. They are cast out near cover, and retrieved in short jerks, with pauses in-between. When a bass hits, the water will literally explode, with the bass often coming completely out of the water in heart-stopping leaps. Top Waters are most effective in the shallows, in the morning and evening. Popular models include the Chugger, Popper, Crazy Crawler, Jitterbug, and my favorite, the Billy Bass. There are other types with a veritable arsenal of treble hooks on them, shaped like thin minnows, with spinners on them such as the Devils Horse, and Tiny Torpedo. They are all deadly.
Every tackle box should have at least one of each of these types of lures in them. If you could only have 4 lures, these would be it.


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

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