Prespawn Tactics

It is hard to beat a jerk bait during the prespawn, and for me I love the Ima Flit during this time of year. However, I also work in a big Pepper Custom Baits Pro Football head jig and a Optimum 5” Optishad swimbait.

For the jerk bait (Ima Flit) I r2015-01-03 15.08.24ig it up with 10 to 12-pound P-Line Fluorocarbon line on a 6’9” Irod Air medium-action rod and an Ardent Apex Elite 7.3:1 reel. I like to work it casting around rocky banks. Areas with darker rock should be better, as the dark rock heats up faster than the lighter rock.

With the jig I search everywhere from super-shallow to deep near ledges and deep structure. With the jig I rely heavily on my Garmin electronics to find the fish and then present the bait with a slow presentation. My favorite color combination in cold water is black and blue, which is also the case for dirty water. For clearer water, and as the water begins to heat up I might work in some green pumpkin colors. For equipment I will use a Irod 754 Air rod and 17-pound P-Line Fluorocarbon paired with an Ardent Apex Elite 6.5:1 reel.

The prespawn is a great time to target big fish. While the jerk bait and the jig can and will catch big fish, I can’t think of a better way to catch the true giants than with a swimbait. I will use a 5” Optimum Optishad swimbait rigged on my signauture series Pepper Custom Baits swimjig head. I usually use a 3/4 oz head, but for shallower areas, I might lighten that up to a 1/2 oz or 3/8 oz.

With the swimbait I am mostly targeting ledge-breaks, but I am constantly checking on my Garmin electronics while I am fishing watching for schools of baitfish. Find the baitfish and you’ll find bass as they feed up for the spawn.

For my swimbait equipment I use an Irod Genesis II Magic Stick paired with an Ardent Apex Elite 7.3:1 reel spooled with at least 17-pound P-Line fluorocarbon.