How To Use A Jerkbait For Bass Effectively

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In this article, we’ll go over a simplified guide on how to fish a jerkbait. They’re pretty simple to use, but there a few tips I will share to increase your success and catch rate, so we’ll go over those more in-depth.

Jerkbaits are a type of lure I don’t use as often as I would like, and when I do use them, it’s mostly in the late fall or winter. Jerkbait fishing for winter bass is highly effective. However, using jerkbaits can be effective year-round. Not only that, they’re insanely easy to use.

What is a jerkbait?

Jerkbaits are a type of popular bass lure that functions by the angler “jerking” their rod. This jerk causes the bait to dive under the water and begin to swim before stopping. This start and stop movement mimics a wounded bait fish that cannot swim correctly and is vulnerable.

Choosing Your Jerkbait

Jerkbaits come in different sizes and colors, so it’s important that you select the appropriate lure according to various factors.

If you’re fishing in clear water, use something that looks pretty natural. If you’re fishing in murky water, use brighter colors to make your bait stand out more. Just like any type of fishing, your bait will change with the seasons. In colder water, I would suggest going with smaller and more subtle baits because bass are not going to be looking for big and lively targets.

Setting Up Your Gear

Your rod and reel are an important piece of the puzzle to using jerkbaits. I would suggest a medium-action rod that’s around 6 to 7 feet. This size and action will give you the best performance. For the reels gear ratio, go with something that reels in a bit faster but not too crazy. I like to use a gear ratio around 6:1, this will give you good control without reeling in too quickly. For the line, I usually will use fluorocarbon because it’s nearly invisible to fish and has a good amount of give. You can also use mono if you prefer.

How To Fish a Jerkbait: All In the Wrist

Wrist action is your main tool with jerkbait fishing. Cast your line out, let your bait sit there for a few seconds, then make it twitch by slightly pulling and flicking your wrist. If you want a slower presentation then you can use more of a pull than twitch, but if you want fast then give it more of a twitch. These movement make the bait dive under water slightly and start swimming. The starting and stopping will make your bait look like an injured bait fish.

When to Fish a Jerkbait

The best times for jerkbait fishing are usually early in the morning or later towards evening. You want to look for places where fish might be hanging out, like near some cover or where there’s a bit of shade.