As a beginner, picking out the right lure for the right fish can be a challenge. You likely have a handful of lures in your tackle box and aren’t quite sure what they are used for. In this article we explain how to use five fundamental fishing lures for the most popular species in freshwater.
The crankbait is a universal lure to target multiple game fish like bass, pike, walleye and trout.
- Use a crankbait to search for fish by casting in various locations
- To mimic a wounded bait fish, reel down 5-7 turns, then pause and repeat
- To mimic a swimming bait fish, reel in at a steady pace
Spoons reflect sunlight and vibrant colors to call in fish from afar. Larger spoons are used for aggressive fish like northern pike while smaller spoons are used for weary fish like rainbow trout.
- Cast out and wait a few seconds for the spoon to sink
- Reel in moderately-fast to swim the spoon above the weeds
- Always keep the spoon moving to reflect light and colors
Fundamental fishing lures from the Tailored Tackle Freshwater Fishing Kit
Artificial worms are a popular option for bass fishing because they can reach shady areas where bass lurk.
- Target shady spots below docks, in weed beds, and under branches
- Rig your worm weed-less to limit snags
- Bounce your worm against the bottom while rigged with a weight
- Slowly swim your worm along without a weight
Spinning lures are ideal for trout because they call in roaming fish with a combination of vibration and light reflection.
- Cast and retrieve the spinner at a gradual pace a few feet below the surface
- The blades vibration calls in trout so always keep the spinner moving
- Spinners will catch bass, perch and panfish too
Curl Tail Grub
A grub on a jig is your primary lure to catch fish of all species and sizes. The grub is small enough to trick panfish, yet lively enough to entice a bite from bass and walleye.
- Match your grub color to live bait: white for minnow, black for leech, brown for worm
- Fish along shoreline transitions, ideally off a dock or bank
- Bounce the jig along the bottom in 1-2 ft hops