How to Catch a Bass Using Minnows

How to Catch a Bass Using Minnows
Selecting a bait to use when attempting to catch bass can seem a daunting task. This is especially true when making a visit to a local outfitter, sporting goods store or big box store. Manufacturers from around the world are attempting to make a better bait for catching bass. One thing to keep in mind is that the artificial lures are typically based on natural bait shapes and characteristics. Try using minnows for bass fishing as this can prove to be very productive when fished properly.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

How to Catch a Bass Using Minnows

Things You’ll Need:
  • Bass rod, reel and line Minnows Live well or bucket with aerator 3/0 to 5/0 hooks
  • Bass rod, reel and line
  • Minnows
  • Live well or bucket with aerator
  • 3/0 to 5/0 hooks
Step 1
Properly handle bait fish such as minnows to ensure they are healthy and active. Make sure the live well or container being used is outfitted with an aerator for generating bubbles, which introduce oxygen into the water.
Step 2
Use an appropriate-sized hook for the size minnow. If you are fishing a 2- to 3-inch minnow, then you would use a 3/0 hook. It is possible to use smaller hooks. However, there may be diminished hook setting power, especially with larger bass. Also, avoid using too large a hook.
Step 3
Insert the hook through the mouth of the minnow or through the lower jaw and up through the mouth. Hooking the minnow through the gill slit is an option. However, this will typically cause the minnow to die sooner than other methods.
Step 4
Cast the minnow with an underhand or side-arm motion rather than an overhead motion. An overhead cast causes the minnow to travel higher in the air and impact the water harder as a result. The more gently the minnow enters the water, the better shape it will be in to move around and attract bass.
Step 5
Allow the minnow to sit and move naturally in the water. Avoid the temptation to begin cranking immediately. Keep the slack taken up, and when a bass takes the minnow dip the rod tip down. Reel in any slack line, and raise the tip of the rod to set the hook in the mouth of the bass. Keep the rod tip up as you reel in the fish.

Tips & Warnings

Set the hook within 20 to 30 seconds of feeling the first bites by the bass. Waiting longer will allow the bass to swallow the bait, resulting in a gut hook, which can be detrimental to the bass.
Use caution when hooking a minnow as most hooks are honed extremely sharp by the manufacturer.

Article Written By Tara Dooley

Tara Dooley has written for various websites since 2008. She has worked as an accountant, after-school director and retail manager in various locations. Dooley holds a Bachelor of Science in business management and finance.

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