1. PLASTIC WORM
Cast a Texas-rigged worm close to cover, ending the cast with the rod tip overhead. A second before the worm alights, point the tip at the worm so slack line lets it sink vertically right in front of the bass.
Hook a lively shiner behind the dorsal with a 4/0 Eagle Claw hook tied to 25-pound-test line, and keep coaxing it toward dense shore cover until it runs back under. When you feel a pickup, slowly count to five before setting the hook. A stiff-action, seven-foot rod is best for this type of fishing.
3. JIG-AND-SOFT-GRUB LURE:
If you don’t catch bass on this combo, you’re probably fishing it too fast. Try this and watch your score soar: Rig a quarter-ounce jighead with a curlytail grub. Cast it into a bass hangout, let it flutter its way to bottom, then do nothing. Reel slack out of line, gently lift the rod tip, and be ready for a slight nudge on the line. Set the hook hard.
4. SLIM MINNOW:
Cast one close to cover, and let it lie still. Then: twitch, twitch … count 10… twitch, twitch… count 10… twitch, twitch … count 10. At this point, retrieve the lure just fast enough to make a soft hump in the surface. Most strikes occur on the first twitch, twitch or on the retrieve.
This is the best bass locator of all. Tie on one with a big lip for deep diving, and move from one hangout to another, chunking the crankbait close to cover and reeling it back steadily. This is called “gunning and running” and will help you quickly determine what types of cover bass are using.
6. LIPLESS VIBRATOR:
The faster you reel this lure, the tighter the action. Remember that wise bass are used to seeing lures alight and run away, so they ignore them. But let your vibrator sink vertically to bottom, counting h down. Say you get slack line on a 10-count. Give your next cast an eight-count, and you’ll be retrieving just over bottom. Make the next cast a six-count, then a four-count and you will present your lure at all levels.
7. OVERHEAD SPINNER:
This lure looks like nothing a bass eats, but it has been a hot number for years. One productive maneuver is called “slow rolling.” Cast alongside a fallen tree, a log or a brushpile. Reel slowly until you feel the lure contact the object, then, with rod tip held high, lift and reel at the same time, nudging the lure up and over the obstacle. Also, in the back of weedy bays, try reeling at a speed that will make the spinner flutter just beneath the surface in a moving “V.”
8. PROP BAIT:
There are many types, but one of the all-time dependables has a floating body with a propeller on the front, on the rear or on both. No one knows why but there are times when bass show a preference; try each at intervals and let the bass tell you what they like at the moment.
Of all the varieties–slab, slim, thick, treble hookk, single-hook weedless–I’ve fished over my lifetime, the one enduring producer is the Johnson Silver Minnow. It has a weedless single hook with a knife-edge perimeter that gives it a faster beat and terser flick than others. Add a porkrind or soft-plastic trailer and work it everywhere there are weeds, both shallow and deep, and you will get it back many times with a bass hanging on.
10. BLADE LURE:
This is compact looks like a shiner, casts like a dream and catches a wide variety of bottom-dwelling species. They are especially deadly in streams where bass are holding in fast current. Two or three holes in the lure’s head enables you to keep the lure at a chosen level.