I know, I know. I may be getting a little ahead of myself for the vast majority of my audience, but the days are getting longer, and as warming trends begin to take place the spawn will be on us before you know, making its way from the depths of Florida up through the rest of the country. But, what better time to prepare than now, right? Here are three baits that produce for me during the spawn each year.
When I am covering flats, bays, and pockets searching for bright spots and love-making fish I am typically casting some type of soft jerkbait around. Not only is it going to induce strikes from feeding pre- and post-spawn fish, but it can be slowed down and even dead sticked if you do come across a fish locked onto a bed.
Once I know what I’m casting at, and I know that a fish is locked on, I first want to test their mood. Best case, they react quickly and worst case I learn whether or not I need to continue working the fish or downsize even further if they are being finnicky. I’ll start with some sort of craw-style plastic with a 1/4oz tungsten weight. It’s good to experiment with different presentations and angles until you can get a read on the fish.
I’d say the majority of my most rewarding battles with a spawning bass have been won with a spinning reel. There are times when patience, light line, and a less intrusive approach are head-and-heels more productive than trying to power a fish into reacting. When it comes down to this, I’ll first lean on a weightless senko style bait. Even further, I’ll dial it down to a trick worm or even a finesse worm.
Of course, each encounter is different and not all battles will be won, but I guarantee with just this handful of baits you have what you need to put together a solid spawn-season in the coming months!