The water temperatures are starting to drop and so anglers will adjust their seasonal tactics. Although it can catch fish all year round, the jerkbait is a traditional cold water bait. If you’re wondering how to fish a jerkbait, as the name suggests, jerk it. But for beginners the jerkbait is a bit more.
Instead of constantly staggering just for some bait like a blade gauge or crank bait, when fishing jerkbait, make the bait twitch and shoot forward by popping the fishing rod and wobbling the slack line that is created. A crucial part of learning how to fish a jerkbait is the rhythm of the action. It may seem insignificant, but the difference between, for example, “jerk-jerk, pause” and “jerk-jerk-jerk, pause” can be very large.
And don’t overlook the length of the break for jerkbait bass fishing, which can be 20 seconds or more. The colder the water, the longer the break. If the water had a streak of ice in the morning, think of the patience of bass fishing expert and TV host Mark Zona, who comes up with the tip, “Text someone.” Once you discover that rhythm or cadence, you need it to be successful Jerkbait fish likely to reproduce consistently.
While color certainly does play a role, depth of work can help determine the actual best jerkbait for the day. Some jerkbaits float, some sink and some even hang off once the depth is reached. Some of these baits are shallow (1 to 3 feet) while others have internal weights that can shift or have a larger, steeper lip for diving to 10 feet or more.
The jerkbait setup depends on the water you are fishing. River jerkbait fishing can be done with hard or soft plastic baits. There are pluses and minuses for everyone. Hard baits can have 2 or 3 sets of triplets, so anything they come across has an increased chance of catching up. However, this can also mean problems with rocks and aquatic vegetation. One way to get around this is to use soft plastic jerkbaits, often referred to as “flukes,” which can be attached weed-free with a single hook. When bites are absent, anglers can upgrade and upgrade with a single treble hook.
Another clue to learning to fish a jerkbait is that it is considered “work” in warmer waters. Other hot water techniques like the drop shot or Carolina rigs can be viewed as less work and, as I’ve heard from pro anglers, more like “lugging around”. However, when the water cools down, the fish metabolism drops and the fish eat less. This means you may have to “work” harder by throwing, twitching, twitching, or luring to trigger a reaction bite, even though the fish may not be necessarily hungry.