A spinner-bait is a fun bait to fish, the hit you get when a bass strikes it is just unbelievable, the problem is most fisherman do not have confidence in using a spinner bait and if they do not catch a fish rite away and they put it down.
I will try to explain how to use a spinner-bait as well as how to gain confidence when you do.
There are many uses for a spinner-bait; it can be used as a fish finder, a deep water bait, a shallow water bait, a bait that covers a lot of area in a short time, you can drop it like a worm fish it like a Jig or speed it up like a rattle trap. All these uses allow you to make it one of the most flexible baits in your tackle box. A bait that you could just about fish exclusively on a fishing trip and catch a good stringer of bass with day after day. The key to this is to understand what a spinner-bait emulates in the water and how to make it perform like you want it to.
If you can imagine a baitfish in the water, erratically swimming along the top, bottom or in the thermo-cline you basically understand what this bait emulates.
Now that we have established this, the next thing is to understand that bass are predators, and they love to strike what appears to be wounded. A Bass always pick on the ones that look like they injured or wounded. If a baitfish appears weak it will strike it in a heartbeat. So the key, is to make this bait appear erratic in the water, act wounded, play hurt, or just plain loud so it aggravates Mr. Bass. If you can do this, the sky is the limit on ways you can make this bait work, look or act in the water.
So this is why this bait can be so versatile, you can fish it in shallow water by ripping it along the top of grass or structure. You can go heavy ĺ to 1 oz or more, and fish it in 10 to 15 ft or more, of water by just slowing down the retrieve and let it tick the structure at the bottom. You can make it act erratic by stopping, dropping and speeding up your retrieve. You can throw it around or under boathouses or docks. You can make it noisy by adding a Colorado leaf blade, or adding big blades that hit each other in the water. You can fish it with a single blade a double blade or a combination of a Willow and Colorado blade.
Knowing that a spinner-bait has so many ways to use it, fishing this bait now becomes easy. You want to examine the water your fishing, establish whether itís deep, shallow and what the structure is around you, and dress the bait.
The biggest part now is to make sure you are rigged properly in other words match the correct rod and reel. A spinner-bait needs to be set up properly to get the effect we have been discussing, you must select a rod long enough to get a long cast; a 6 Ĺ ft to 7 ft. rod is my preference, stiff enough in the tip to let the bait work properly and with a fast enough reel to retrieve it so it will stay on top of the structure. Todayís modern rods with IM7 or 8 class of rods are perfect to match this up with. You get a rod heavy enough to hold a bait cast reel, strong enough to work the bait and enough sensitivity in the tip to feel subtle strikes. Now all you need is a 6.3 to 1 bait cast reel, with either 12lb to 17 lb test monofilament line and youíre rocking. I prefer Trilene Green.
So letís go fishing, the first thing you must do to fish a spinner-bait is start with a medium to long cast. A spinner-bait works the best when you give it distance at the cast to perform, so get it out there 30 to 40 yards when you cast. This will allow you to start working the bait so it performs to the highest level of possible achievement, that being to stop it, drop it, change speeds or rip it over or next to the structure you are fishing. With a sensitive rod tip there are many ways to enhance the action of this bait. A spinner bait rig is fished with mostly your wrist for movement, if you change the wrist position by moving your wrist back and forth it changes the action and hence the presentation. The only time this long cast process would not be preferred would be if your using it around boat houses, docks or near weeds and tules; Then you have to get it up under or next to the structure and let it drop and pull it changing speeds and using your wrist quickly to create some quick action with the bait. It can also be yo-yoed next to bridge pilings and trees by fishing the tip of the rod high and dropping it to get the bait to fall, like a baitfish that has been struck and is dropping. Remember imagine this being a baitfish and you want that predator bass to eat the bait or get so annoyed to hit the bait that is invading his territory !
Lastly, setting the hook while fishing a spinner-bait. Many times the strike alone will hook the fish, however there are times that you get a strike especially on a big fish and you just know its not hooked good. While your reeling this fish in, yank that rod toward you with the tip up to get the hook set deeper into the mouth of the fish. If the fish is not hooked good the first time it jumps it will throw the hook and this will ensure a deeper hook set, I have lost some fish this way over the years but I believe I have kept many more that would have thrown the hook anyway than I have lost.
My preferences of spinner-baits are as follows:
1. In lakes in the summer I like colors that match the color of the water, (usually clearer transulant); in the spring I like them a little darker. I want red somewhere on the bait usually (I say it canít hurt) on the skirt, this is for reasons of the predator bass, and red makes the bait look wounded.
2. As a rule I generally donít use a trailer, unless I want the bait to slow down and ride higher in the water.
3. I generally do not use trailer hooks, unless I am missing a lot of strikes. Then I will use a 2.0 or 3.0 trailer hook; again I like red hook trailer with darker colors and silver hook with lighter colors.
4. I use a Ĺ to 1.0 oz. Most of the time, unless I have some real thick grass I am trying to fish over then I go lighter.
5. I use a combination Willow leaf and Colorado blade most of the time; unless I want more vibration to trigger a reaction bite like in the spring & and dirty/stained water, then I use a single or double Colorado blade.
I use a double Willow leaf blade if I want a lot of flash and color in the water, to emulate a school of Shad/baitfish.
6. I want a spinner-bait that does not rollover, I have found many that do not, but only one that you can bet on will not and thatís Berserk Baits/Snakebiteís Spinnerbait (pre-tuned in the package)!! Meaning it rides straight up.
Now that you pretty much know how to fish a spinnerbait, and what to fish it with, and how to make it act in the water you can go out there and fish with confidence that you will catch fish. If you donít believe me, try this little trick.
Get in your boat, leave your entire tackle box home except your Snakebite Spinnerbaits or your spinnerbaits of choice & your rod and reel, and make your success depend on this one bait. This will make you think like a wounded baitfish and you will catch fish and learn confidence in it !
Learn to use your spinner-bait and have fun doing it.