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Baits You MUST Have for Summer Bass Fishing

Best Baits to use in the Summer for Bass

There is no question that during the summer months is when fishing is at it’s all time high. You must take into consideration a couple things before casting a line into your favorite body of water. What fish are you going to target? Are you going after the deeper schools of bass, or are you going after the bank huggers in the shallows? What time of day is it, and where is the thermocline? All these factors play a huge role in bait selection, and in this article, I’m going to help you narrow the endless choices of baits down to just a few!

Shallow Baits

In my opinion, roughly 75% of bass anglers are bank beaters. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with it! The banks and shallows hold tons of bass all throughout the year, especially during the summer months. Like mentioned above, time of day plays a big role in bait selection. During the early hours of the morning and late hours of the evening, there is nothing better than a top water style bait. One of my favorites to use is a 110 size Whopper Plopper by River2Sea. These have been hot baits since there launch awhile back. I like to keep my color selection very simple. The Loon, and Powder (Black, and white) colors are interchangeable. I like to switch back and forth till the fish tell me which they prefer over the other.

Moving style baits are another great option along the bank and in the shallows as well. When bass are chasing shad or other types of bait fish, I reach for a square bill crankbait. Particularly a Rapala DT Fat series in the big shad color. Square bills come through cover easily and are a great choice for covering a lot of water in a short amount of time!

Sometimes fish are just in a funky mood and do not want to break the surface of the water or chase a moving style bait. When this is the case, I opt for a finesse style bait approach. A wacky rig senko is hard to beat this time of year up shallow. I typically use the 5-inch Gary Yamamoto Senkos in the Green Pumpkin color. One thing I like to do is dip about an inch of it into the garlic chartreuse Spike-It Dye. Some days, its seems like it gets me those few extra bites I am looking for!

BONUS BAIT: Looking for that big bite of the summer? There is an old saying that goes “Big bait, Big fish”. Glide baits are notorious for catching bass of lifetimes! One of my go-to glide baits is made by 6th Sense, The Draw. The draw can also be used as a search bait in a sense as well. I like to throw them around submerged grass beds, and laydowns. I couldn’t count the times have “drawn” big bass out from a laydown just to come and check the bait out, or absolutely destroy it!

Deep Baits

This one is for those seasoned anglers that have taken the time to learn their graphs, and those who are amid learning as well! I classify any water over 10 feet in depth to be deep, and there is an assortment of baits to catch bass holding in water from that depth and deeper. For finicky suspended bass I like to start out with a deep diving crankbait that dives to around the depth the fish are holding. The Rapala DT Series is ideal for doing just that. My preferred colors are big shad, citrus shad, and the green gizzard shad.

Sometimes the crankbait just will not cut it. In this situation, I like to fire out deep diving jerk bait. Yes, you read that right! Jerk baits are a huge player all throughout the year, including the summer months! ReelSonar has an amazing robotic jerk bait called the Snappr, and if you haven’t used it, you are missing out! Coming in at $15.99 and with a variety of colors the Snappr dives 4-6 feet and is a slow sinking jerk bait. This rechargeable jerk bait lights up and vibrates underwater, giving bass something they truly may have never seen before and force reaction bites. View bait here!

What if the bass aren’t suspended? What if while using you iBobber you notice the bass are stacked on the bottom of the lake. Luckily for you if bass are toward the bottom they are likely to be active feeding fish! In these situations, I pick up a football style jig! Football jigs unlikely to other style jigs are made to drag the bottom. I occasionally like to short hop them, but for the most part it is a slow and methodical drag. The best advice I can give you while dragging a football jig is once you feel you hit a piece of structure, stop moving the bait and let it sit for a few seconds and give your rod tip a few slight twitches. I couldn’t tell you the number of times I’ve catch fish after pausing the bait after hitting something a little different down there!

You still can’t seem to buy a bite? Its time to throw power fishing out the window and pick up a spinning combo for this next bait! Drop shots are your best bet if you come to this situation. The drop shot has evolved so much over the years and have become such a versatile bait, that you can fish them virtually anywhere, in any depth of water and catch a fish. Drop shot can be rigged with a variety of soft plastics (swimbaits, craws, or my favorite finesse worms.) If you are just needing to put some numbers on the board, I promise you, the 6 inch Roboworm FAT straight tail worm will get the job done. I like to throw the Aarons R and B, Aaron’s Morning Dawn, and the SXE Shad colors. They all work phenomenally, but one of those will always get bite!

Summertime bass fishing can get tough. We have all had those days that we just struggle, and normally its always the fish’s fault. “They just weren’t biting today…” We are all guilty of it. Whether you are a pro, or simply a novice everyone struggles from time to time. It is in high hopes that this list of baits, covering from the deep depths to the dirt shallow water, will keep you from having to blame the fish, and help you land that bass of a lifetime this Summer!


Tight Lines! – Greg Marshall – YouTube – Marshall Fishing

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