The spring months are the best time to find trophy bass swimming near the shoreline. From the prespawn period to the post-spawn, these five lures cover your bases as the bass transition from staging prespawn locations in deep water up to the shallow bedding grounds later in the spring.
The chitter-chatter from a bladed jig will annihilate prespawn bass when worked at a moderate pace along the shoreline. Aim for shallow grass flats, dock channels, and protected spawning bays where bass are likely to pull up and spawn. Use a 7′-7’3″ Medium to Medium-Heavy casting rod with a moderate to fast tip.
- Z-Man Original Chatterbait
- Z-Man Chatterbait JackHammer
- Z-Man Chatterbait Elite
- Z-Man Big Blade Chatterbait
- Z-ManChatterbait Mini Max
When the water temperatures start creeping up early in the spring, it’s time to tie on a lipless crankbait. The tight wiggle and easy fishing ability make them ideal for targeting various parts of the water column.
Use a medium to medium-heavy casting rod with a moderate tip that is strong enough to rip your bait through the grass but still tapered enough to help absorb some shock during hooksets.
- Bill Lewis Rat-L-Trap
- Rapala Rippin’ Rap
- Strike King Red Eyed Shad
- BioSpawn RattleBot (New)
- Googan Squad Klutch
A casting jig paired with a crawfish trailer should be fished near the bottom to mimic a crawfish scurrying or bluegill or baitfish scrounging for food. Flip a jig near the classic shallow water targets like dock pilings, brush piles, and rocky shorelines to catch bass looking to feed on their favorite springtime meal, the crawfish.
- Googan Squad Juicee Jig
- GameChanger Lure Trashmaster Jig
- Terminator Pro Series Jig
- Z-Man CrossEyeZ Power Finesse Jig
Like the jig, a soft plastic swimbait will work virtually anywhere, but you can dial things in during the spring by using the same soft plastic swimbait in multiple ways.
Smallmouth anglers can start off by pairing a ball head jig with a small 2-4″ inch swimbait and use it to fan cast prespawn areas where smallmouth roam. These can be rock piles, structures adjacent to spawning flats, below a dam in a river, or in the deep pool of a local creek.
Largemouth anglers should try rigging soft plastic swimbaits weightless and using them as subtle topwater to burn over the top of bedding bass. The weightless feature can be fished shallow without spooking the fish, and the back and forth tickle from the paddle tail will entice the protective bass into taking a swipe.
- BioSpawn ExoSwim
- Strike King Rage Swimmer
- Googan Baits Saucy Swimmer
- Badfish Baddle Tails
- Karl’s Amazing Baits Freestyle
- Strike King KVD Perfect Plastic Swim’n Caffeine Shad
The all-time shallow water fish catcher is a wacky rigged Senko. Cast out a wacky rigged worm, and let it fall slowly near shallow water weeds, brush, and dock posts. It shouldn’t take long to notice your fishing line taking off in the other direction. When that happens, reel down and set the hook! The tantalizing fall from a slow sinking Senko is irresistible to bass, and the best part is that it’s effortless to fish. If you’re impatient or don’t like waiting for the slow fall of weightless Senko, try adding a 1/16 oz weighted wacky hook to increase fall rate.
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