By Ron Johnson, Professional Angler
Over the years, we’ve seen countless fishing lures hit the market, but there are few that have stood the test of time like the Spinnerbait has. The Spinnerbait has been one of the best bass catching lures for decades, and spring is the perfect time to tie one on the line.
The allure of a Spinnerbait is its vibration and flash, along with a profile that appears as baitfish. Here in Arizona, the Gizzard Shad and Threadfin Shad are one of the primary food sources for bass and other predators. Since Shad prefer the low to mid 60’s as their ideal spawning temperature, these warmer months trigger those schools of Shad to spawn. Because of this, bass take advantage of the endless buffet of the schooling Shad and can be easier to catch when the right lure is presented.
Many Spinnerbaits exist in the market and come in a wide variety of colors and blade patterns. Choosing the right spinnerbait color and blade combination can be critical in order to get bites. When fishing on the bank or in shallow water, I prefer a lighter Spinnerbait such as a 3/8 and increase to 1/2 ounce and higher when fishing deeper.
You can also vary the speed of your retrieve to control the depth of your Spinnerbait. Typically, the faster you turn the reel handle, the more lift the blades create, bringing your lure to the surface. Less lift with a slower retrieve allows your lure to sink deeper. The Spinnerbait is the perfect lure to cover water quickly, and one that bass find hard to resist under the right conditions. Once mastered, it will soon be one of your favorites.
How to Choose the Right Spinnerbait
A general rule of thumb is to go with natural colors like white or Shad Pattern colors paired with nickel blades in clear to lightly stained water. Chartreuse or bright colors are best in stained to dirty water, along with gold or painted blades.
Next, you have several style blades to choose from, with the most popular being the Colorado and Willow Leaf Blades. Colorado Blades are more round to pear-shaped and put out a lot more vibration and thump. The Willow Leaf is a narrow, longer style blade that puts out less vibration but more flash and is designed to draw attention. Both styles of blades come in nickel, brass, gold, or painted. The type you decide one depends on the conditions you are faced with, so it’s best to experiment. Also, I recommend doing a little research on the lake you are fishing at to find out what kind of baitfish are present. Oftentimes, trying to match the skirt colors or blades to the food source in that lake will produce the best catches.
I recommend a good 7‘ to 7’4” Medium Heavy Baitcasting Rod paired with a 6:2:1 to 7:1 Baitcasting Reel. This setup will provide you with the power needed for solid hooksets, and reel speed to successfully pull these fish away from cover and land your catch. Using a good Fluorocarbon fishing line in the 17-20lb test will suffice for this application. Fishing with light equipment or too light of a fishing line will spell disaster from the start, and not be the proper application. The Spinnerbait has a heavier gauge hook which requires a stout rod and powerful hookset which cannot be achieved with most other spinning rods.
Hope these few tips will encourage you to pick up a Spinnerbait for your next fishing trip!