The plastic worm is regarded as the most popular bass lure. It can be rigged on a hook in different styles and then fished so that it will not snag in the weeds. The Texas rig and the Carolina rig are the favored way to fish these worms, which come in varied lengths and a myriad of colors. Plastic worms will produce fish but there is an element of patience involved in fishing them that some anglers lack.
Soft plastic creature baits modeled after lizards, crayfish and other aquatic beings that bass partake of are solid lures. These baits do have to be fished slowly along the bottom or through weeds. Tubes and trailers that can be placed on a jighead--a hook with a weighted "eye"--also are good bass lures. Other plastic baits like swimbaits mimic minnows and shiners. Jerkbaits do this as well but must be fished by jerking the bait forward and then letting it sit. These fool a bass into thinking an injured fish is available to eat.
Crankbaits are what are known as search baits. These are cast out into water to find bass feeding at specific depths. Crankbaits look like bait fish with a rounded body but have treble hooks on their bottom and end. Lipless crankbaits are allowed to settle to a certain depth and then reeled in at that depth. Shallow diving crankbaits are employed in shallow waters and have a small lip on the front that makes the lure dive down as much as 6 feet as it is reeled in. Deep crankbaits have a much more pronounced lip. These bass baits will go as deep as 20 feet and deeper if trolled behind a boat.
Spinnerbaits are used to catch bass in shallow water where there is weed cover. Spinnerbaits have a large hook hidden by a "skirt" of material such as vinyl. A safety pin shaped shaft has a spinning blade at the other end. Spinnerbaits can be fished at different speeds and also are considered to be a search bait.
Buzzbaits have a blade on the front that stays half in the water and half under the surface as it turns. This action churns up the water as the bait is reeled along the top. A large hook hidden by a skirt follows the blade. Buzzbaits must be fished in the shallows and on top of the water. This means that as soon as they hit the surface they must be reeled in. Otherwise they will sink and lose the water-churning action that attracts bass.
Topwater baits include stickbaits, propbaits and other types. Stickbaits float and depend on the bass fishermen to give them an action that will turn bass on. They can be retrieved steadily or in slow jerking movements. Propbaits are similar but have a prop on one or both of its ends. These baits can be brought in quicker than stickbaits. Plugs and crawlers made to look like creatures such as frogs stay on the top of the water and are excellent for when the light is low. Fished slowly at dusk or dawn, they fool a bass looking upwards to the surface for a meal. Plastic mice and frogs also are fished in a similar manner. All of these topwater lures are best fished in 15 feet of water or less.