With the winter fishing season upon us many anglers around the country are pulling jerkbaits out of their tackle box in search of some cold water bass. Despite the narrative that jerkbaits are one of the best lures to toss this time of year, anglers can often be met with a lack of bites and bass in the boat. When fishing the jerkbait during winter, it is imperative to understand the factors that will elevate your chances of getting more bites! This short, educational article will give you some serious knowledge and ammunition before you hit the water next, plus we'll be sharing our top four jerkbait fishing tips for better bass fishing!
Jerkbait Fishing Tip #1: Utilize the Strike Zone
One of the biggest mistakes we see anglers make is not keeping their jerkbait in the strike-zone for as long as possible. During the winter, bass are usually decisive on whether or not they will eat your lure, but if you can keep your jerkbait in the strike-zone during the retrieval, you are already a lot more likely to get a hit! Keeping your jerkbait in the strike zone is simple: use a suspending jerkbait. With the suspending jerkbait, your lure won’t float or sink too much which means that it can be retrieved very slowly while staying in the strike-zone the whole time.
Jerkbait Fishing Tip #2: Fish Windy Shorelines
When bass fishing in general, making your lure look like a real creature in the water is one of the best ways to get more bites. The same concept applies for jerkbait fishing. Oftentimes in pressured waters, bass can distinguish a lure from a real baitfish, but when fishing windy shorelines this is far from true. The ripple on top of the water causes the jerkbait to look distorted from the bass looking up. This means it will look more like a real baitfish to them and entices them to go after it. Because of this, windy shorelines can often produce a great jerkbait bite any time of the year, but especially during the fall and spring months.
Jerkbait Fishing Tip #3: Vary Your Retrieval Methods
Most anglers know that experimenting with retrieval methods is a good way to experiment without changing your bait. But what retrieval methods are the best for the jerkbait? Depending on the season, there are a variety of retrievals that produce bites on the jerkbait. The retrieval that our team has had the most success with is what many call, “twitch-twitch-pause.” This retrieval technique is pretty straightforward, all you have to do is simply twitch your lure twice and pause. The pause allows any nearby fish to strike if they were enticed by the lure, and if they weren't, you simply repeat the process. This retrieval technique is very slow, so be sure your casts take a couple of minutes to get back in, or else that means you are going too fast! Other great retrieval techniques to give a try consist of a simple steady retrieval with a low gear ratio reel, or constantly twitching your bait while reeling in at the same time.
Jerkbait Fishing Tip #4: Experiment with bold colors
During the winter fishing season, natural colors are best when tossing the jerkbait. However, during other times of the year experimenting with bold colors can lead to a lot more catches for any angler. Bright eye-catching patterns like bone, chartreuse, or even silver/gold are always great options to give a try if the bass aren’t interested in your natural colored jerkbait. It may seem unorthodox to new anglers, but trust us when we say some of the best fishermen in the world use unique jerkbaits and catch monster bass with them!
Overall, jerkbait fishing can be one of the most effective ways to catch bass year-round. Even though it can be tough to get the jerkbait bite dialed in, once you do it’s safe to say that you’ll have a lot of bass in the boat! We hope that you can apply these tips next time you hit the water and stick some studs on the jerkbait!