The Best Striped Bass Surface Lures

The Best Striped Bass Surface Lures
Striped bass are a hybrid variety of bass that are capable of living in fresh water lakes and along coastal salt waters. A favorite game fish species of many anglers, striped bass are capable of growing large in size, and they put up a fierce fight when hooked. A wide range of lures may be used to catch striped bass, however, many anglers prefer to use surface lures. These lures may be especially productive when striped bass are feeding on bait fish near the surface.


Swim baits typically feature a long slender body made of hard plastic or wood. The baits may be painted solid, two-tone or in a scheme to imitate a bait fish. Swim baits are cast and then retrieved so that the speed of the retrieve, and motion applied with the rod tip, are varied. The bait should be worked back to the boat in an erratic manner to imitate a wounded bait fish.


Popper lures feature a flat or concave nose and a typically elongated body. Most poppers feature a realistic paint scheme that is designed to imitate a small bait fish. Poppers are cast to a spot on the water and allowed to momentarily sit. The lure is retrieve by lifting the rod tip slightly and reeling in line. The lower front edge of the lure is pulled into the water slightly, and this results in a bubbling and chugging sound. Stop the retrieve and let the lure sit once again and then repeat the retrieve. A striper bass must be allowed to take the popper under water before setting the hook to avoid pulling the popper from the mouth of the fish.

Soft Plastic Jerks

Soft plastic jerk baits such as flukes and minnows can prove to be very effective on striped bass. Rigged on a hook with out weight, soft plastics are capable of producing very realistic and life-like motion on the surface of the water. These plastics will most commonly feature solid colors or a solid color with a metallic flake molded into the lure. Soft plastics should be cast and allowed to sit motionless for a few seconds. A quick jerking retrieve should be used, followed by a pause. Allow the bait to sit motionless once again, and then repeat the jerking retrieve.

Article Written By Keith Dooley

Keith Dooley has a degree in outdoor education and sports management. He has worked as an assistant athletic director, head coach and assistant coach in various sports including football, softball and golf. Dooley has worked for various websites in the past, contributing instructional articles on a wide variety of topics.

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