Sunday, October 7, 2012

Fall Fishing Bait & Color Selection

Fall is in the air, you know what that means! the temps drop but the scenery and fishing improves!

Ok, I know not all of you will agree with me, as Fall fishing can at times be trying, the cooler temps have the fish on the move and put you in constant search mode. What I like about the Fall is that I get to fish some pretty exciting baits that I don't use during the summer months.. like buzz baits, or lip less cranks, even jigs.

If you are looking to improve on your Fall Fishing success, check out some of these proven fishing catching beasts.

Top Water: Buzz Baits & Poppers

We all love to throw top water, it is in our blood. But as the temps drop you may find your fav walking bait is not producing like it once did. So what now, what are your options?  Easy, slow down and make some noise

Buzz Baits as are great spring and Fall bait, they make some serious noise and let you cover a lot of water while searching for fish on the move or in transition. I prefer to stick with single blade buzz baits and run them in both white and black. The Cavitron is a great choice as it can be run slower then other buzz baits and still stays on top of the water. Fish really inhale these baits, so be prepared to spend a lot of time straightening them back out. Another caution is that the long body with heavy blade does not have a lot of give, so when battling jumping smallies it can be hard to keep tension in the right area and thus you lose some fish (speaking from experience here)

Poppers are another great top water bait for Fall fishing. They are the perfect slow moving loud bait that can call fish in from great distances. They are more productive then walking baits (for me) and I believe it has to do with the fact that they stay in one place for longer periods of time. This lets the fish key in on them, get angry and feed. Rattles are a perk when using poppers in the Fall, extra noise is a plus!

Spinner baits

Spring, summer and fall, you will rarely look at my rod arsenal and not see a spinner bait tied on. I love to spinner bait fish, and fish seem to love the spinner bait, so it's a win/win

In the fall months similar to top water fishing I like to slow things down a bit. I use larger spinner baits that will allow me to slow roll them over and around structure. Like always I use white skirts, and I like the tandem of silver and gold blades. If you want the extra weight without the size, the War Eagle Screaming eagle is the perfect bait for the job, it's comes in at 1/2oz but with the profile of a 1/4oz spinner bait.

Fishing points, rock or weed edges and you will find success with spinner baits. If you have the patience to let them drop into deep water you are a better man then me, and you will find success in spots ignored by other anglers

Tube Fishing:

I don't throw a tube as much as I should, I really enjoy tube fishing and have a fair amount of success with it. In the Fall months I tend to break out a tube more often, and use them in two different ways...

first and foremost I will opt to drag a tube in medium to deep water situations, from 8-20ft. Cast it out and let it bounce around on the bottom causing a ruckus. This tactic can be tricky as many times you are waiting to feel nothing instead of a hard strike. Often when dragging a smallie will simply pick you bait up off the bottom, when you feel "nothing" or a "mush" set the hook. When dragging it is very important that you can feel your bait on the bottom, if you can't, slow down or bulk up

If you are not into dragging, you can also throw a tube on a drop shop rig. I have had great success with this method. It gives the tube a great slow flutter but the weight still makes contact with the bottom so you know where your bait is at all times.

I fell in love with El Grande Lures tubes this season, and that is one of the big reasons I joined there team. They are ultra durable but still give off an incredible action. The Below pic shows off a couple of my favourite colours including the "red breast" (bottom) and bluegill (middle)

In the Fall months smallmouth bass are on the feedback, they love a quick bulky meal and tubes offer them exactly what they are looking for.

Jig Fishing

If you only throw a jig once a year, you need to make sure that it's during the fall season. Similar to a tube bait, a jig offers feeding fish the meal they crave. Big, bulky slow moving, but with lots of life like action, a jig allows you to fish deep, shallow and anywhere in-between. Whether its flipping at structure or swimming whats left the weed beds a jig offers you versatility and the chance to hook big fish on every cast

For the most part I prefer darker coloured jigs, opting for blacks, and dark browns and greens. I was in the mood for Fall colors today so pictured below is a Black Angel Jig in the "peas and carrots colour". I use Black Angel as I love the long tail like strands they leave on each bait. The quality is great and each one takes the abuse you would expect to put a jig through over the course of the season. Check out their swim jigs, finesse jigs and the hit man football jig.. very cool

LipLess Crankbaits

This is not exactly  my area of specialty, but if you were to poll a group of anglers on their fav Fall baits, you are going to hear "lip less" crank more then once, and whether it is a go to bait for you or not, you cant deny they are fun to throw and they catch fish.

Lip less cranks do a couple things really well, first off they make a ton of noise, and as we have talked about a few time today, that's an import thing during the Fall, secondly similar to a spinner bait they allow you to rip in,  around and through cover, but unlike a spinner bait you can pause a lip less crank and try to entice the fish to kill it. I guess i should specify here that "suspending" lip less cranks are my bait of choice. They allow me the vary my speed without feeling rushed, and sometimes pausing a bait for just a few seconds does way more damage to a fishes psyche then ripping a bait past them

As mentioned above this is not exactly my wheelhouse, but I do carry some Rat'l traps as well as Cotton Cordell Suspend Spots. Both are a quality bait and really get the job done.

Honorable Mention:

You had to know you might find the Alabama rig here somewhere. It is the hottest most controversial bait currently available, and guys are using it all season long with success. yes, even in the Fall.

I have only ran my Alabama rig a few times, first in the early spring then a few times while goofing around in the late summer months. I really like the way it moves when rigged Texas style and not with jig heads. The extra weight  and open hooks were really getting me into trouble so I opted to run skin hooked EWG hooks with these Bass Magnet lures swim baits. Here in Ontario we can only  run the Alabama rig with 4 hooks, so I have added a Colorado blade to the centre arm giving my rig some additional flash

You can work the Alabama rig in any situation you would normally throw a spinner bait. I love pulling it across the top of weed beds or rocky points. I'm still looking for my first double header but I have managed a few fish on this rig so far, and to be honest i enjoy throwing it.

Alright so that's that, if you were not to sure what to do when the calendar hits October, now you have some options. I know I missed many a good bait, so feel free to add to the list, like you I'm always willing to learn and adapt

Weapons of Choice

Cavitron Buzz Baits thrown on a Dobyns 705cb Glass
War Eagle Spinner baits thrown on a Dobyns DX744
El Grande Tubes thrown on a Dobyns SS703C (some guys like to power down to a 742)
Black Angle Jigs thrown on a Dobyns 734C
Lip Less Cranks thrown on Dobyns 805CBRM

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