here is one type of lure that continually
gets purchased by anglers based on its
looks and appearance on the rack or the image on the website.
It is a crankbait.
The designs and paint jobs on today’s crankbaits
are so lifelike and eye catching, bass fisherman
cannot let a new one go by. The hope is… that is the
same for the bass they are trying to catch!
Some may view the crankbait as a simple bait
that is just cast out and reeled in.
This may work, but to take a crankbait fishing
experience to a whole new level, it helps to know
which one to use to actively target bass at a given
depth and ones that are relating to a specific form of
Shallow diving crankbaits can work all year, but
I predominately use it in the summer and fall when
the bass are up feeding.
One of my favorite ways to target shallow cover like laydowns and rip rap is with a shallow running crankbait, especially a squarebill.
What makes a squarebill unique is its ability to go through heavy cover, bounce off structure and not get hung up. It is extremely effective to
fish one through a laydown, let it bump into the wood, then pause the retrieve so the bait will slowly rise towards the surface. This will help generate a reaction bite out of the bass located in and around that laydown.
Two of my favorite squarebills are the Bagley Balsa B1 and the BOOYAH XCS. Both baits run true out of the box and deflect off shallow water cover.
My three main color groups are shad colors, bluegill patterns and bright chartreuses to use in stained water.
Shallow crankbaits are also effective when the weedline is starting to emerge and there are scattered clumps of vegetation. Ripping the shallow crankbait out of the clumps can generate a reaction strike out of a lethargic post-spawn bass.
When the water is cooling like it is in the fall, I like to use a flat side crankbait. Much like shallow running crankbait, this bait will deflect off the laydown or rock it bumps into when being retrieved, but with the flat side design of the bait, the action of the bait is different. A flat side bait, like the Bagley Flat Balsa B2 or Rapala OG Slim, has a tighter wobble, but more vibration, making it ideal for the cooler water.