bass fishermen rely heavily on the spinnerbait during the early
spring, but the spinnerbait is actually a versatile lure that can
be fished throughout the year.
Although the spinnerbait has been around
for several years now in one form or another, the bait has gained
a renewed following among tournament anglers in recent years
because of its popularity on the B.A.S.S. and FLW Tournament
trails. There have been several BASSMasters Classics that the
spinnerbait was the dominant lure. Hank Parker won the 1989
Classic on the James River by slow-rolling a 3/4 ounce spinnerbait
he had modified with tandem gold blades and just two years later
during the 1991 Classic, pro Ken Cook made his mark in the
B.A.S.S. record books with a Classic win on Maryland's Chesapeake
Bay, also with a spinnerbait. I was fortunate to have been at both
of these Classics and several before and after, and I can tell you
that most of the pros always have a spinnerbait tied on.
I like to fish a spinnerbait in just
about every month of the year and although it works extremely well
during the spring months it's also an excellent bait during the
fall months here in Oklahoma. In fact on guide trips the past
couple of weeks on Lake Texoma, we have been catching some nice
brownies and kentuckies on spinnerbaits fished around sandy points
and rock banks.
I normally like to fish a spinnerbait
when there is a little chop on the water, however on recent trips
we are catching our fish off rock banks or points where there is
little or no wind. The bass are not holding on any type of
structure and the key seems to be find the bait fish and you will
find the bass.
My favorite spinnerbaits are the
Terminator T-1 series in the 1/4-ounce size. I like either the
bright white shad color with the white double willow blades, or on
a cloudy day the chartreuse and white with the tandem chartreuse
and white painted blades. I am partial to painted blades on my
spinnerbaits and you can't go wrong with a white spinnerbait and a
white painted blade on most of our water here in Oklahoma.
Because most of the bait fish that I am
finding is relatively small, the smaller size spinnerbaits seem to
work best. I have a hard time convincing anglers that a small
spinnerbait will catch big bass, but I have taken some really good
bass, both largemouth and smallmouth on small spinerbaits.
On those days when the bite is tough and
there isn't any wind, my favorite spinnerbait is the Terminator
Tiny-T which features a quality Mustad Ultra Point Hook. Most
spinnerbaits in this smaller size also have a small hook, but the
Termiantor Tiny-T has a hook large enough to hold a big fish.This
little 1/8 ounce spinnerbait in the bright white shad color will
catch bass consistently. I like to modify this little spinnerbait
by changing out the back blade and replacing it with a No. 3 white
mag willow blade.
I like a spinnerbait because you can
cover a lot of water and seek out the more aggressive bass. This
has been especially true lately since the bass seem to be roaming
looking for shad and not relating to structure.
Since 1975 when Jimmy Houston became a
full-time pro on the tournament trail, he has been labeled as a
spinnerbait fisherman and for good reason. In his early years he
earned the nick-name of "Jimmy Hustle" becasue of his
fast, buzz-saw tactics with a rod and reel.
Houston, like most of today's top pros,
doesn't want to be identified as being an expert with only one
kind of lure, but the facts speak for themselves. Houston is a
master of the spinnerbait; has been, is, and always will be. As
the old saying goes; if it acts like a duck, walks like a duck,
and looks like a duck, then it must be a duck! Houston is always
going to be known as a spinnerbait fisherman and his involvement
with Terminator only reinforces his love of spinnerbait fishing.
If you haven't tried the new Jimmy
Houston Speed Bead Series of spinnerbaits by Terminator you need
to give them a try. I especially like the 1/4 ounce size with the
tandem turtle back blades. With both the Speed Bead and the Quick
Clevis design, it's easy to modify and change blades while on the
For the most part, the lakes that I fish
all have fairly clear water and if you fish clear water, you owe
it to yourself to try Jimmy's bubble gum color Speed Bead
The spinnerbait truly is a versatile lure
and a bait that can be fished during any season.
Until next month, remember to practice
catch and release.