Best Freshwater Baits for Early Summer Fishing for Bass

Best Freshwater Baits for Early Summer Fishing for Bass
Of all the groups of freshwater fishermen, bass anglers are most commonly associated with having tackle boxes that are jam-packed with a wide range of fishing baits. Most of those anglers use a few of the baits; the rest sit there, mostly unused. The early summer period is when anglers can dig deep in their tackle boxes, since it's a time of year when the bass are on the move and can be caught on any number of baits.


Spinnerbaits are one of the most productive bass lures in all seasons. But they are particularly so in the early summer period because anglers can use them to cover large amounts of water. Smaller spinnerbaits--from about 1/4 to 3/8 of an ounce--are best during the early summer. Anglers should use translucent colors if they are fishing in clear water; darker, solid colors in stained water. Also, willowleaf blades are usually best in clear water, while Colorado blades perform best in stained water. The best areas to fish spinnerbaits in the early summer period are around emergent vegetation and over shallow weed flats. Do not reel spinnerbaits straight in; instead, vary the retrieve to more closely mimic a wounded baitfish.


Lipless Crankbaits

Bass oftentimes are scattered during the early summer period and anglers must search for them. Even when they find them, it is unlikely there will be a large number of bass. As a result, covering water is an important aspect of early summer bass fishing. One of the best lures for covering vast amounts of water is a 1/2-oz. lipless crankbait. These baits are aerodynamic and are one of the longest-casting lures anglers have at their disposal. Target weed edges and drop-offs with lipless crankbaits and, like spinnerbaits, vary your retrieve speed.


A jigworm is made up of two things: a mushroom head jig that weighs 1/8 to 1/4 of an ounce, and a 4- to 7-inch plastic worm. The worm is threaded onto the shank of the jig and snugged up against the bottom of the jig head. Jigworms are effective because they can be used nearly anywhere--from shallow cover to deep weedlines. Early summer anglers can use a jigworm as a search lure by casting it out and retrieving it steadily just off the bottom, or as a saturation lure by casting it around specific cover, allowing it to fall to the bottom, and then bumping it along the bottom as it's retrieved to the boat.


Topwater baits like poppers and buzzbaits can be especially effective during the early summer period. That's because, unlike other times of the year, bass will hit topwaters all day during the early summer. Anglers should focus on fishing topwaters around shallow cover--bumping a buzzbait into the cover on the retrieve is a good tactic. But topwaters can lure fish in deeper water, too, so it pays to have one tied on and to make a cast with it from time to time. Most anglers would agree there is nothing quite as exciting as catching a bass that hits a topwater bait.

Wacky-rigged Worms

When anglers have located bass in shallow water, or on weed flats that are in 4 to 8 ft. of water, there are few baits as productive as a wacky-rigged worm. The rig itself consists of a worm hooked through the middle of the body. There should be an equal amount of worm on either side of the hook. A worm rigged in this fashion has a slow, tantalizing fall that can be irresistible to bass. A 7-inch, straight-tailed worm works best. Cast the rig out and retrieve it with short sweeps of the rod.


Article Written By Larry Anderson

Larry Anderson has been a freelance writer since 2000. He has covered a wide variety of topics, from golf and baseball to hunting and fishing. His work has appeared in numerous print and online publications, including "Fargo Forum" newspaper. Anderson holds a Bachelor of Arts in print journalism from Concordia College.

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