Understanding how to catch bass and what specific types of baits and lures will help you fill the boat is crucial to making your day of fishing a day of fishing and not casting!
Having a deep set of tackle will always help you expand your game and ability to do what you have to do to meet the specifications of the individual fishing scenario.
In short this means one thing: the broader your range of tackle is, the more you’ll be able to do and the more ways you’ll be able to actually fish!
Understanding the differences between the most popular types of bass fishing baits and lures will further ready you to break down and analyze the situation and exactly what you need to catch those bass every time you’re on the water.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
PRO Bass Fishing Method #1: Using and Rigging Worms
The first and often most simple method of catching bass is of course using worms!
This can be a great option as you can find worms throughout the day and nightcrawlers throughout the night. Nightcrawlers can sell for anywhere from about $3-$6, so grabbing some yourself can definitely be a great way to save a few bucks!
Rig-Type #1: The Carolina Rig
The Carolina Rig is a personal favorite, and this rig allows the angler to have more free and more natural movement of the bait without the weight getting in the weigh.
It is designed to let the worm or other bait dance accordingly behind it as you lift up and down and move it across the bottom of the water. It’s similar to a big crankbait, and the Carolina Rig is perfect for investigating the bottom of the water bed.
Be sure to keep near constant contact with the bottom of the water, and fish a pretty standard worm fishing style by lifting the line, releasing the slack, and doing so in that order until you have a fish (or your bait is gone).
How to Tie the Carolina Rig:
Start by sliding a bullet or egg sinker onto your line and then tie a bead (or brass) clacker behind the weight. Make sure to hold them in place while you tie a barrel swivel to the end of the line.
Next take a leader from about 2-5 feet and tie that to the opposite side of the barrel swivel. At the end of the leader attach your hook and then thread the worm onto the hook.
Rig-Type #2: Texas
The Texas Rig is probably the best for beginners, and it is the one that many people learn first because of it is easy to do. It’s also a fool-proof method, as the hook tip is actually covered by the body of the worm and thus makes it much harder for the hook to get snagged on anything!
This can sound like a difficult process, but once you get the hang of this it will become your go-to rig.
How to Tie the Texas Rig:
Start by taking the hook and putting it through the head of the worm. Push it about a quarter of an inch in and poke out of the other side at a 90 degree angle, and then run the hook out the side until you get to the eyelet. Keep the worm straight and lay the hook to the side.
At this point you want the hook to be facing the body of the worm. Take the bent part of the hook and note where it will intersect with the bottom of the worm: that is ultimately where you want to hook it and thread it through.
Rig-Type #3: Drop Shot
In stark contrast to the Carolina type of rig, the drop shot allows the angler to create a rigging system in which the weight is at the bottom and the hook on the line is much higher up the line (usually anywhere from 2 inches to several feet).
The great part about this rig is the fact that you can use the weight to hold your bait in one place so you can vertically fish accordingly as you shake the bait and enticing fish to come and bite it that way.
The most effective way to use this rig is to fish vertically in an area with a lot of cover. This is a great rig to help you find cover and then ultimately find fish.
When you do find a solid area that has some cover around some structure you have found the optimal spot for using the drop shot rig.
Adding slack to the line will make the worm fall, and taking slack away it will rise so use this knowledge accordingly to place your bait right where you want it!
How to Tie the Drop Shot rig:
First tie a standard knot to the hook, but make sure you leave a long tag end which will ultimately be the length of how high you want your bait off the bottom of the water.
Next take the tag end and run it through the eyelet from the side that the hook point is.
This will ultimately make the hook kick outwards with the hook pointing up. Next, either use the Texas style rigging system to actually put the hook onto the worm itself (if you have a smaller small drop shot hook simply nose hook the worm).
PRO Bass Fishing Method #2: Using Top-water Lures
The first lure we’ll mention might not be the most pertinent or popular, but it is one thing for certain: it is extremely effective.
Topwater lures are great for a number of scenarios, and the real purpose of these lures is to have a lure that acts like a fish in distress that can easily be snatched up by another.
These topwater lures are a blast to use for a number of reasons, and seeing a bass nail that lure as it jumps out of the air can be the most satisfying feeling that you can have of the whole day of the water.
Top-water lures simply work very well, and they are also great to use in a situation where you know that there is a significant amount of ledge-space where you are fishing.
Loosing lures is no fun for anyone, so this is just another reason we’ll always vouch for the effectiveness of the top-water lures!
PRO Bass Fishing Method #3: Spinner Baits
Spinner baits also create a nice but difference ripple effect throughout the water than a top water lure does. It is definitely slower than a topwater lure, but it covers a lot more space due to the way that it is constructed.
This can be great for a number of reasons, and with a larger the vibration you will logically know that bigger fish who are hungry and are looking to eat will sure to be looking out for.
Even having a quick and simple spinner bait as your backup setup can save you in the event that the water temperature drops and or the sun comes back out after a period of rain (indicating that a front has passed through).
In the event of the latter, be sure to throw on a spinner or other slower type of bait or lure, and be sure to cast where there is a lot of cover. If the visibility in the water is not high and is quite murky, find right where the murkiness ends (if you can) and be sure to cast right there too!
PRO Bass Fishing Method #4: Using Plastic Worms
Plastic worms are great for colder water scenarios, or just in scenarios where you are bored or don’t want to fish with a higher-maintenance lure.
Plastic worms are generally used for colder water scenarios, but this doesn’t mean that you can throw them out into the channel of a river (in this scenario using scented or semi-scented baits will suffice for the natural smell from the blood and insides of a worm).
Using the aforementioned rigging system like the Texas or Carolina style system will really allow you to maximize the effectiveness of the way that the worm is hooked.
Be sure to keep your rod tip high to keep the line as tight as it can be as you let out line and naturally let the bait fall to the bottom of the body of water.
The most hits occur when the bait is falling, so just be aware of this! Lift your rod tip after about 2-5 seconds after the bait hits the bottom of the water, and then let it fall naturally again. And if you don’t have a fish already, then just repeat until you do!
PRO Bass Fishing Method #5: Bass Jigs
Bass jigs are a great and entertaining way to aesthetically entice a fish into snatching right up at the jig at its first glance. This lure is similar to a spinner bait in the sense that it creates a lot of vibrations in the water, and in some cases (depending on the size) it can cover a lot of space too.
These lures differ greatly from the topwater lures because jigs are more focused on the lower middle to the bottom of the water. This is great to know in a situation with a lot of underwater brush and ledges that might ultimately snag these lures and steal them from you forever!
However, don’t let this sway you from using bass jigs. Successful anglers might even tell you that this is indeed the optimal bait to use in most situations, and this is for a number of reasons.
This is partially because of how technical using bass jigs can get, but don’t let this overwhelm you either. Just know that this isn’t a distance throwing lure by any means, and it is served to primarily be used with mid-range flipping and pitching techniques.
PRO Bass Fishing Method #6: Crankbaits
Crankbaits are an interesting and underused option in the bass catching world, but they’ve certainly placed on this list for a number of reasons.
The best part about crankbaits is the variety of them that we have seen grow and grow as the market demand for them skyrocketed. These baits also move extremely quickly, and they cover a lot of ground just like the spinner and bass jigs.
That can be key for a number of reasons, and just covering more water always makes you more available to more space (and logically, to more fish).
This exposure over the water will help elicit attention directly to the lure, and this will have the large-mouth snatching it up the second that they can!
PRO Bass Fishing Method #7: Chatterbaits
The runner up to these more commonly used and effective lure-types is the chatterbait. To read more about chatterbaits click here, and to briefly discuss them, they are very similar to topwater, jig, and crankbait lures of all sorts.
Check out our chatterbait tips and techniques.
The unique design and composition of this type of lure really helped its popularity skyrocket in the early to mid 2000’s. The way that the bait moves is a bit more erratic than with a topwater or crankbait, and this can also really be great for us for a number of reasons.
The chatterbaits make a ton of noise, they’re fast, and they cover a lot of ground. This makes them a great option to keep around when nothing else is working. As with any lure or sense of logic, the larger the size of the chatterbait, the greater the ripples and space covered in the water.
This ultimately implies that bigger fish are going to go after the bigger baits, or at least the baits that have a big bark and not necessarily the bite the fish is looking for!
So be sure to keep a chatterbait around too so you can change things up and attack the water with a lure that was created to be a combination of the other similar types of lures, you might find that you have an advantage with all of the great aspects of a chatterbait.
Conclusion and Final Thoughts
Bass are quite frankly sometimes a bit difficult to assess just like humans, so knowing all of the ways to catch them is essential because you never know what they are going to be looking for.
However, when we really pick up on the trends of what they are doing or not doing and we stay ahead of the weather and the fishing scenario as a whole we can really begin to breakdown and further analyze what is going to put the most fish in the boat!
Having a lot of knowledge about the different methods of catching bass and having a large variety of types of baits and lures is definitely going to expand your game and help you become a much better angler.
Try to establish a set of tackle with at least two types of each of these lures to begin to have the optimal selection for every unique fishing situation you might face, and always be sure to know at least one of the rigging systems next time you’re out on the water.