Best Baits for Smallmouth Bass As a result, this will keep the lure in the sight of the fish longer. There are no right or wrong answers either. If a topwater bite does occur, however unlikely, Craig suggests Heddon Tiny Torpedoes. You just need to make sure you use the right one at the right time for best results. The secret to consistently catching smallmouth from rivers is being comfortable fishing in current. Wobblers, on the other hand, should be reeled in slowly and steadily so they gurgle and sputter across the surface. Jerkbaits, spinner baits and buzz baits can all be used for smallmouth fishing. Across the southern-most range for smallmouth bass one hears chatter about “winter smallie fishing.” However, upon examination of water temperatures on the lakes and big rivers down south, those readings rarely fall below the mid-40 degree range. There’s a reason former Field & Stream Fishing Editor, A.J. Powerful fighters, they leave an indelible mark on the hearts of fishermen. Try a slow, crawling retrieve first. Striped Bass are one of the best overall fish to catch. Great quality of work and a lot of attention to the fine details. Twitch or slow-crawl it on the surface as a topwater lure. Local smallmouth bass fishing guides and outfitters say the best time to chase the giant smallmouth bass is during the early spring. I highly recommend taking your trophy here. When the water starts to cool down in mid to late September, the fall smallmouth start to feed up for the winter months. Top colors are pumpkinseed, smoke, purple, black, motor oil, and chartreuse. I've had many pleasant days on small rivers and streams despite catching few fish. The Water Freedom System May Save your Families Lives. After two or three twitches, bring the lure back at a faster pace, experimenting with smooth and erratic retrieves. Many are effective. The reasons: fewer hang-ups, more strikes, and it’s easier to unhook fish. Transitions Taxidermy has done for me. The hooks are dressed with a natural squirrel tail. They can be found throughout a wide range and live in most types of water including creeks, lakes & rivers. Go with either Texas-rigging if hang-ups are a problem or Carolina-rigged versions, with either single or multiple hooks. Twitch lightly, pause, and then reel back super-slowly so the lure creates a v-wake on the surface. In a way, they are a bit of a combination of largemouth bass in freshwater trout. A fish will likely hammer it as it slowly settles. Natural structure like stumps, boulders, rock piles, and fallen trees. As I have written before elsewhere, the Original Floating Rapala is probably the best overall crankbait commercially available. Field & Stream may receive financial compensation for products purchased through this site. In murky or muddy water, even lures up to 3 inches long may fool some hawgs. The Beetle Spin is a classic, and scaled-down versions of those made primarily for largemouths will also score. And it has been that way for some time. This post will thoroughly cover the best smallmouth bass fishing tackle and lures. For bass, the best sizes are number 3 which is 1/4 ounce, number 4 which is 1/3 ounce and number 5 which is 1/2 ounce. Slow-moving rivers and fast-moving rivers are usually not suitable for large populations of smallmouth bass. JJ was very professional, honest and has a very unique touch to his art. The slower rivers warm up too quickly and usually have a flat, silty bottom. It is in the family of lures that anglers term “jerk baits”. customer and glad I gave him a chance because I have a new taxidermist now. Use as little weight as you can with Carolina-rigged worms. Man-made structure like docks, riprap, and bridge pilings. Reel steadily to probe mid-levels, or work it erratically to fool fish through both levels of the water column. The Berkley PowerBait Minnow is another good one along with the Zoom Tiny Fluke. When I first started smallmouth fishing, my “spinner” choice would have been a plain in-line model such as a Mepps or Panther Martin. If that doesn’t work, or only attracts small fish, let the lure sink from a few inches to a few feet, then begin a jerking retrieve. First time. Simply put, the floating Rapala is an old standby that has yet to be bested. “Smallmouth are very aggressive toward a topwater bait hovering over their heads during this period, so a bait that can stay close to the surface is extra effective,” he says. These lures are terrific on big waters like the James and Susquehanna. They prefer cooler and clearer water than their largemouth bass cousins. It also comes … Jack took an old Bear mount that was mounted in 1940 that was in horrible shape and restored it to perfection. Stick with crankbaits measuring 1¼ to 2 inches for most situations. It may sound boring, but some of the biggest river smallmouths fall for this simple, basic presentation because of the incredibly lifelike wiggle of this lure. Gold, blue, chartreuse, and orange are also top colors. By: Bill Cooper . Here’s a list of the best crankbaits for smallmouth bass that applies to basically anywhere the fish can be found. This widget allows you to show your most important offer to all visitors. Then start cranking again. This includes learning how to read a river, understanding the influence of current on smallmouth location and being able to effectively fish flowing water. This is the second trophy mount that Wildlife. Dance and skitter them erratically on top first. Lures for Smallmouths. best on your mount Jack is a really great guy could not be happier. In murky or muddy water, even lures up to 3 inches long may fool some hawgs. If bronzebacks are in a fussy mood, try this Carolina rig: Thread the last ⅛ inch of the grub head on a size 4 to 8 octopus or bait-style hook tied 18 to 24 inches below a large split shot or ⅛ to ¼ ounce egg sinker and swivel. 10 Ways to Screw Up a Campfire (and How to Fix Them), The Agony, and Utter Joy, of One Child’s First Fish, The 6 Best Big-Game Loads for the .308 Winchester, How to Hunt Ducks in a Winter Storm and Live to Tell About It, The Story Behind the World-Record Whitetail Deer. The first fall is generally the period that writers mean when they hype “fast fall fishing.” Water temperatures are still relatively warm (above 57 degrees) but food sources are declining, and the smallmouth bass’s energy requirements are high because of developing gonad production. The best smallmouth bass fishing lures are generally suspended lures that aren’t surface or divers. Clean out your tackle box and stock these 15 winners instead Best Smallmouth Bass Fishing Tackle and Lures. Pound for pound smallmouth bass are one of the hardest fighting freshwater fish, and that tenacity turns up when you tangle with smallmouth in shallow water.. Smallmouth are native to rivers, lakes, and streams throughout the Midwest and have routinely been stocked to non-native ranges since the 1800s. Manipulate these lures as subtle topwater offerings first. Poppers and prop lures can be fished the same way. Small versions of largemouth crankbaits and also crayfish-shaped models are terrific mid-level smallmouth lures. But you feel it. Very talented and skilled. McClane called the river smallmouth “the greatest freshwater gamefish of all.” If you’ve come under this fish’s spell in its river environment, you know why. Would definitely recommend for your taxidermy needs. Hunting Food Preservation During COVID 19 Crisis. Because of this, the best smallmouth bass lures are a highly debated topic among fishermen. This is one of the simplest, cheapest lures ever invented—but also one of the most deadly for smallmouths. Use this sudden pause near rocks, logs, limestone ledges, and drop-offs. That pause sometimes incites following fish to strike. Whether it be on a Crankbait , topwater. It floats at rest and dives down 2 or 3 feet below the surface upon retrieve. This is a terrific bait for catching smallmouth bass anywhere, but particularly in rivers. Smallmouth fishermen are a dedicated lot. Winter River Smallmouth With Pete Cartwright. Soft plastic or a jerkbait Smallies can really put up a battle. Recommend this company for all taxidermist needs. Bronzebacks might chase down a damselfly one minute, grab a cricket, or nail a skittering shiner the next. This will add … Wobblers like the Jitterbug and small poppers like the Rebel Pop-R can also produce frenzied surface action. Thanks for reading and feedback. The Smallmouth Bass is one of the most exciting fish to catch that swims. 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