Fall is one of the most exciting times of the year for bass anglers, both for largemouth and smallmouth. Fish are often in a feeding frenzy, as they gorge themselves to fill up for the long winter ahead.
Large baitfish are often the target of these hungry basses, and I have found several lures that work great during this changing time of the year.
One of my favorite lures for fall bass fishing is a Road Runner jig, tipped with a white, plastic grub. I think the bass is chasing baitfish schools hardcore during this season, heavily feeding to fill them up for the cold winter months of low activity.
The Road Runner imitates this well, with a little “flash” thanks to the jig spinner, plus the curly tail action of the white grub. I often use Mister Twister or Zoom grubs.
Sometimes, I will take a plastic bag, fill it with Berkely bass scent (available in wonderful squeeze bottles) and toss the plastic grubs in it to let them soak until I use them.
Seems to help with keeping fish on the hook, they tend to hold onto the lure longer when there is a bit of flavor involved, and not just foul artificial plastic taste.
My preferred retrieve involves simply casting out, letting the lure flutter to the bottom, then bouncing the lure back, alternating between reeling and pausing to twitch the lure.
One of the downsides of this is the number of lures lost to underwater snags, thanks to the exposed hook on the Road Runner jig, but this is one of the prices to pay for fishing with jigs.
Bites will be quite obvious, hard and fast, as the bass snap and chomp on the entire jig quickly.
Expect some epic fights; fall bass tends to be more aerial and vigorous in their resistance than during the muggy summer months, at least in my experience.
Not only is this a great lure for largemouth and smallmouth bass during the autumn months, but it also is an excellent multispecies lure. I have caught channel catfish, white bass, and spotted bass during this time of the year while using the Road Runner lure.
Cranks, when fished correctly, imitate baitfish quite excellently. Cast them out, often near riprap and another deep cover, then work them back to the shore or the boat.
Fish tend to hit crankbaits hard, leaving anglers with no question as to when a fish strikes. Popular patterns include the Sexy Shad, from Storm and other companies, thanks to the success it has seen on the tournament trail of B.A.S.S. and FLW.
Spinnerbaits are quite ugly, especially when compared to elegantly crafted crankbaits or exotic swimbaits.
Still, they work incredibly well, even more so when large schools of shad and other baitfish are being hunted by largemouth bass and smallmouth bass.
Don’t be afraid to fish them near weed lines, as they are fairly weedless and usually don’t get snagged on such a structure.
Fall is a great time of the year for bass fishing. The colder mornings give rise to warmer afternoons, with loads of bass activity. Get out there and catch some of these hard-fighting fish on your fishing trips. Tight lines!