Winter crank baits
by Mike Gerry
With the best of the winter fishing yet to come there are many different baits to choose from but over time none have been more productive than flat sided crank baits. With all the different sizes and styles there are far too many choices, so here are just a few that have stood the test of time on most lakes. Like the SPRO Aruka shad rattle bait!
To me the best and most productive has been the rattle bait, the flat sided bait gives you many options for presentations, add that to no lip and it allows you to even expand your presentations. A rattle bait can be presented in many ways allowing you to excite the fish and offer up a meal or become a reaction bait in many different situations.
The presentations are endless with rattle baits as just about anything you can imagine with your mind can be presented with this bait in the water. The key is to become creative with your presentation, so you are doing something different with every cast. When you catch a fish it’s then time to repeat that presentation until it does not work again. It is also a bait that can be fished in many different depths of water. By slowing it down or using a heavier bait you can change depths and use it in deeper water, or by speeding it up fish it shallow. The bait bounces and rips off cover causing reaction bites, allowing you to search areas quickly and thoroughly covering water when fish are grouped up in the cold water.
Another great flat sided crank bait is the small profile lipped crank bait like the SPRO Little John. Its tight wobble allows it to gain depth quickly to use as a great search bait when pulling crank baits off fast dropping banks. It is also a bait that generally works around cover, like lay downs and tree limbs near the bank allowing it to bang and move sharply around many different types of cover along the edges of grass or wood.
Winter is a time to fish for pre-spawn bites and nothing does it better than these two flat sided baits, find effective colors for your lake, be persistent and vary your presentation and you will catch winter bass!