As the spring begins it’s march into summer there is one species of fish that is renowned for their feisty, hard fighting nature that begins to become more and more active as the water temperatures rise, and that fish is the smallmouth bass. Whether you are fishing from a boat or wading in a river, there are few fish that are as enjoyable to fish for and catch as the smallmouth bass. I know this because I have been fishing for and catching these beautiful fish for almost 30 years and know from experience what a good time these bronze colored beauties can provide on a fishing trip.
Smallmouth bass can be caught with a variety of baits and lures, but in this article I will focus on the best lures for smallmouth bass so that you can make sure that you have one or more of them with you the next time that you head out fishing for “bronze backs”. I have used and continue to use all of these lures and know from experience just how effective that they all can be.
- Soft Plastic Swim Baits – Soft plastic swim baits mimic a wounded/dying minnow perfectly and are an excellent bait for smallmouth bass in almost any fishing situation. As you should be aware, minnows are a staple food for smallmouth on many bodies of water, so using these lures is a great way to catch more smallmouth bass. Super Fluke, Super Fluke Jr, Berkley Gulp Alive Minnows, and Slug-Go soft plastics are all great choices when it comes to these lures.
- Tail Wagger Spinners – These lures might not be as well known, but are nonetheless among the best lures that can be used for smallmouth bass. These unique baits send out Panther Martins “fish catching” vibration and have a concave mouth that increases the lures wobble which helps to attract inquisitive smallmouth to the lure.
- Tube Baits – Soft plastic tube baits in the 1/4 to 1/2 ounce size are among the most popular and effective lures that can be used when fishing for smallmouth bass. Bouncing a tube bait along the bottom of you favorite lake, river, or reservoir will often catch smallmouth (as long as you have honed in on an effective color pattern for the day that you are fishing). Make sure that you have an assortment of five to ten different color tube baits with you at all times for experimentation and determining patterns.
- Poppers – Anytime that you are dealing with still water conditions (water that water skiers refer to as “glass” is perfect) slowly working a popper along the surface in water that’s 1 to 6 feet deep can be a very effective smallmouth technique. If you’ve never had the pleasure of experiencing it, you will find that watching a hungry smallmouth attack a top water popper lure is just about as much fun as the sport of fishing gets.
The bottom line is that all of the aforementioned lures are excellent choices for catching smallmouth bass, almost no matter where you fish. Making sure that you have one or more available to you when you are fishing for bronze backs will increase your catch rates exponentially.