Thursday, September 30, 2010

Smallmouth Bass LURE and LINE Tips

I only use artificial bait when I fish for smallmouth bass.  Live bait or bait that used to be alive is messy, stinky, and slimy.  Plus depending on the live bait that you are using you can get bitten by your live bait via crawdads or hellgramites.  If you don’t know what a hellgramite is google it but be prepared for mental flashbacks to the movie Aliens.

Artificial lures are the way to go.  With lures you actually have to move your body and stay active, much different than fishing with live bait.  With spinner lures you are constantly casting and reeling.  I like to wade out into the middle of the river and climb up onto a rock.  Then I can cast 360 degrees all around like a clock.  This way I can cover a lot of fish territory in a short amount of time.  The same strategy can be applied while in a canoe or kayak.  Although it looks more natural to cast upstream and reel the lure in the same direction as the currant, I have had equal success by casting downstream and reeling against the currant or even sideways accross the current.

Spinner lures are easily transported and light weight.  I carry about five lures in a little case that fits in my swimsuit pocket.  I also carry a small Swiss army knife that has the built-in scissors, this makes for switching lures more efficiently.  Never use a swivel!  Although swivels make switching lures very easy they cause the entire lure to spin in the water when you are reeling in.  When the entire lure is spinning it looks unnatural.  Get used to tying fisherman’s knots.  When the lures is tied on directly to the line only the spinner part of the lure spins.  This looks much more natural to the fish.  Note that most spinners have 3-pronged hooks, this will increase your chances of hooking the fish and preventing the fish from escaping during the fight.

I use 8lb test line.  With smallmouth and largemouth that is all the strength that you will need.  So far my favorite brand of fishing line is Spider Wire, which can be bought at Wal-Mart.  Set the drag on your reel to low and be prepared to fight hard.  If the drag is set too high the line will snap when you hook a big boy because the line won’t be able to give.  When the drag is set low like it’s supposed to be the fish will be able to pull your line out at first, but eventually you will tire the fish out and bring him in.

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