5 Bass Rigs for Summertime Success

Top 5 Summer Bass Fishing Lures

Summertime bass fishing is in full swing. As water temperatures have warmed and the sun is at its most intense, bass have moved from their shallow spring depths to deeper water. They are now dispersed throughout the water column. They can be found in different depths, from feeding at the surface to deeper water columns. They can be found along all different structures from docks to deep rock beds. Their location will even vary throughout the course of the day. Therefore, it’s crucial to spend time targeting these different areas of water.

Of course, this means that as bass patterns change this time of year, it’s important anglers do too. It’s essential that you are willing to try different depths and different presentations during this time. With that said, here is a top 5 list of the best summer bass fishing lures.

Best Summer Bass Lures

Below we list five summer bass lures and presentations that every angler should know. From using a swim jig to vertical jigging, we discuss the advantage of each technique and recommend the perfect lure to help you conquer your summer bass fishing goals.

1. Swim Jig

Jigs are a great mid-summer bass lure. Their versatility is like no other. However, of all of the different styles of jigs on the market, one of the most popular, and successful, is the swim jig.

The swim jig is an aggressive strategy. You want to cast it in heavy cover or over structure. Then you want to reel as fast as you can, taking intermittent breaks to let the lure fall before reeling again. Just like with many bass fishing methods, you are looking to entice the reaction strike from the fish.

This lure will work along weed beds or deep structure. If the bite is tough, try mixing up different trailers and speed.

Recommended Lure: The Z-Man Weedless Chatterbait

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2. Crankbaits

Crankbaits can work all times of the year, but they can be especially beneficial in the summer when metabolisms are running high and fish are aggressive. Much like with the Carolina Rig, crankbaits allow anglers to cover ground trolling, while also working great as a casting lure.

As for lure choice, lipless crankbaits work well in the spring. However, opt for a deeper diver this time of year when casting or trolling (lipless still works great vertical jigging).

Crankbaits are a great way to target fish in the middle of the water column, between 10 and 15 feet deep during a troll. When trolling it’s important to try different speeds. To successfully do this, you first need to know the limit of the lure. The second thing to do is to consider the conditions. If the fish seem overly aggressive, they can bite at speeds in excess of five mph. On a slower day, it may be crucial to troll below two or switch to something more subtle (like the Carolina Rig for example). Nevertheless, crankbaits are an easy way to try different depths and different strategies.

Our Recommendation: Rapala Shad Rap Size 5

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3. Plastic Craws

Plastics are tough, come scented, and are a relatively cheap bait that can be used on any species anywhere. However, when it comes to plastics, it’s hard to be a craw. This versatile plastic is used across the country on nearly any setup you can imagine. It replicates the crawfish, making it a popular bass lure for two main reasons:

  1. Crawfish are naturally abundant in ecosystems everywhere (and a favorite bait for bass).
  2. They can replicate many other things (such as a bluegill).

Therefore, even if crawfish aren’t native to a particular body of water, their ability to resemble other prey makes them a perfect all-around bait for bass fishing.

In fact, they are such a versatile plastic, they can be used in nearly any situation. They work great on a Texas rig, on a spinnerbait, or even with a simple hook on their own.

Our Recommendation: Strike King 4” Rage Tail Rage Craw 7 Pack

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4. Topwater Frogs

Topwater baits are popular for bass for multiple reasons. The first is that they can be used in some of the toughest locations. They allow bass anglers to get into those weedy, shallow, tough to reach areas where bass hangout all year around.

The second is the fact that much of their food is located at the surface. From flies to frogs, there is always something they can eat hanging out at the surface. That’s why they will hide out under vegetation: to simply stalk the bait sitting up at the surface. Because of this bass anglers should always keep quality topwater baits in their arsenal.

However, out of the large variety of topwater lures that exist, one of the most popular, and best performing, is the frog. This will work anywhere there is grass or weeds. Not to mention, the lure don’t just look like a “frog” but instead, mimics just about anything that sits on top of the water. Bass don’t identify between species, instead they react to surface movement with instinct.

Their weedless design works perfectly on top of weed beds, lily pads, and stumps where bass congregate to stalk prey. Throw them aggressively in these locations and you’ll find success.

Our Recommendation: Topwater Scum Frog Popper 2” 5/16 oz

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5. Spinnerbaits

Spinnerbaits are a perfect multi-species lure. They work by replicating a baitfish swimming across the water while utilizing vibration and flash to gain a distance fishes attention. They come in a variety of designs, including different blade sizes, body sizes, and allow for the use of trailers. This large amount of versatility allows anglers to catch fish deeper in the water column or right at the surface.

However, they are most popular as a shallow water lure, where they can be pulled through a variety of vegetation with success. Their loud and shiny presentation is especially enticing to bass, who are opportunistic feeders. Add this to the fact that they can be pulled through vegetation successfully and you have the perfect versatile lure for bass fishing.

If fish aren’t biting, a great technique can be to also add a scented trailer. Whether being plastic or live bait, the addition of odor can help encourage the bite of a hesitant fish.

With such versatility, it’s no wonder spinnerbaits are one of the most popular bass fishing lures on the market.

Our Recommendation: Strike King Potbelly 3/8 oz Spinnerbait

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Picking the Right Details

If you are wondering which color, weight, or size you should use; understand that it’s highly variable. When trying to decide, it’s important to understand the body of water you are fishing. Consider questions such as:

  • How deep does the lake get?
  • What are the primary baitfish?
  • Is there more rocky bottoms, structure, or weeds?
  • Is it developed (are docks available)?
  • How much fishing pressure does it have? What is the water clarity?

Determining color, presentation, and the best time of day are dependent on these factors. Learning the water you are fishing is your best bet at starting off on the right foot. From there, be sure to have a variety of colors, sizes, and weights on hand. Therefore, you can easily adjust as needed. You can find everything you need for your next fishing adventure right here.

Pennsylvania Fishing Report | Yellow Breeches Creek (July 2018)

Kinsey’s Outdoors Field Reports | Yellow Breeches Creek July 2018

Location: Yellow Breeches Creek, Boiling Springs, PA

Weather: High 80s/low 90s

Angler: Brandon Rapp

Being a spring fed creek the water temperature was in the low to mid-50s which was a very welcomed characteristic given the recent heat wave. I came across the Allen Cedar Creek Sling Pack at the store the other day and wanted to give it a try. My verdict is, that thing is amazing. Every time I pick it up I find a new reason to love it. I’m always finding a new pocket along with other features that allow me to carry more than what I need and allows me to go further to better, more remote fishing locations. It’s so comfortable I actually forgot I was wearing it most of the time.

Since the stretch of the creek I was fishing was catch and release with only artificial lures I used mostly Yakima Rooster Tail spinners which was enough to fool a 7-inch trout in an area known nationwide as a trout fishing destination.