Al Lindner breaks down some spring jerkbait fishing strategies for bass!
Spring Jerkbait Fishing 101
Spring jerkbait fishing is a great presentation for bass. The biggest factor for triggering strikes is how you retrieve a jerkbait. The most effective retrieved to garner strikes is dramatically different throughout the fishing season.
In cool water, most bass are not as likely to chase down anything that’s moving really fast. In colder water conditions, slow things down considerably. Cast the bait out, give it three to four snaps to get the bait to dive down, then let it pause for five to even ten seconds. Then twitch it, pause, twitch it, followed by another long pause. One key is to actually leave slack in your line, allowing the bait to zig, zag, and turn sideways on the pause, which can be a real trigger.
Keep your eye on that bow in your line during the pause. When a fish strikes, you’ll often see the line ‘jump’, indicating that a fish has bit the bait. Simply reel up the slack and set the hooks fast.
Experiment with the duration of pauses and let the fish tell you what peaks their interest and triggers strikes. Jerkbait fishing can be done either at a spinning rod or a baitcasting rod. I prefer a spinning rod combo because I feel I get more distance on the cast and I’ve got better control on the retrieval.
Jerkbaits are often deadly in a variety of conditions suspending lures seemed to infuriate fussy bass into biting when nothing else will — especially smallmouth. Finally, experiment with different colored baits and sizes. Sometimes these simple modifications can increase your total tally by the end of a good day of fishing.