Selecting Lures to Catch Largemouth Bass

Some fishermen use trial and error to choose the lures they will use to fish for largemouth bass. Expert bass fishermen know that choosing a lure is not a random choice. The following factors will help to determine which lure to use.


The prime concern for choosing a lure is depth. For example, a lure retrieved just below the water surface will seldom be chased by bass in deep water. Season, weather, time of day, water clarity, and past success will help to estimate the possible depth of where bass are holding.

Bass anglers will use surface lures, spinners, spinnerbaits, and shallow-running crankbaits in water less than 10 feet deep. Plastic worms can be very effective also. Water deeper than 10 feet will require jigging lures, deep-running or sinking crankbaits, weighted plastic worms, or spinnerbaits that are allowed to sink. Using live bait will also work in both deep and shallow water.


Brush or thick weeds require lures that will not snag. Some good choices are weedless spoons, spinnerbaits, brush guard jigs, or Texas-rigged plastic worms. A weedless hook with a cone sinker is good for fishing live bait in heavy cover.

Level Of Activity

The size and action of a lure will depend on the activity level of largemouth bass in the area. The speed at which the lure is retrieved will also be determined by how active the fish are. The most important factor in how active bass will be is the temperature of the water. Cold fronts and other weather conditions will also have an effect on largemouth bass activity.

Largemouth bass will be more likely to strike bait or a larger, fast-moving lure in water temperatures of 68 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit, than in water that is cooler or warmer. A 4 inch plastic worm would probably be better in water at 83 degrees, while an 8 inch plastic worm would be the better choice at 75 degrees. A slowly retrieved smaller lure will have more effect in water at 55 degrees.

Live bait is a good choice for cold water because it can be fished under a bobber or crawled along the bottom. Other good choices are small jigs and jigging spoons.

Water Clarity And Light

Many theories abound for selecting a particular color of lure. Most fishermen will agree that their choice will depend on the clarity of the water. Many bass anglers will insist that clear water calls for light-colored lures. Yet, purple or black plastic worms can prove to be quite successful in clear water. Chartreuse, yellow, or orange fluorescent lures will work very well in murky water. Fishing at night or on overcast days calls for dark colored lures.

Other choices for night fishing or in murky water are noisy lures such as chuggers, poppers, large bladed spinnerbaits, rattling crankbaits, or buzz baits. A lively frog can prove to be a good live bait choice.

There are many different lures that can be used to catch largemouth bass. The trick is to learn the proper way to fish them. The thing to remember is, that a lure may work some of the time, but not all of the time. By learning how and when to use your lures, you will gain confidence and catch more fish.

Chester Hastings is an avid fisherman who enjoys being outdoors and going fishing.

Everyone likes to catch fish. If you are looking for resources to catch more panfish check out my latest website at Pan Fishing Tips.

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