Swimbaits For Smallmouth Bass

In the past year, I have been hearing and seeing more talk about using swimbaits for smallmouth bass.  Most bass fishermen are familiar with swimbaits for largemouth bass, especially out west fishing for big bass.

I admit, I had tried some swimbaits while I was targeting smallies in Eastern PA and haven’t had much luck.  Some anglers have figured out how to make them productive in the Potomac and Susquehanna Rivers.

Swimbaits for smallmouth bass

Here are some secrets to fishing swimbaits for bronzebacks.  Check these videos for discussion of fishing swimbaits in lakes and rivers.

Lake smallie swimbait basics

River smallie swimbait basics

One thing you can know is that swimbaits are outstanding smallmouth lures, and at times they will out-produce anything else you could tie on our line. Therefore, if you’ve not yet delved into the swimbait world, it would be worthwhile to invest some time playing with different baits and rigging options.

Size an obvious important consideration for picking smallmouth swimbaits. Soft-plastic swimmers made for bass fishing average about 5 inches long, which borders on big for most smallmouth applications. There are exceptions. In waters where bronzebacks grow extra large, a narrow-profiled 5-inch swimbait might be just the ticket when fish are shallow and aggressive, especially if they are feeding or perch or other large forage. Generally speaking, however, look to the 3- and 4-inch models for smallmouth fishing.  Source

With regards to retrieving these baits, just about anything goes and you may need to play with the cadence a bit.  Try a straight retrieve, jigging or a yo-yo style retrieve and see what the bass want.

Pick up a few of the 3 and 4 inch swimbaits and the weighted Mustad hooks and have some fun with swimbaits for smallmouth bass. If you already fish swimbaits for bronzebacks, help out our readers by leaving a few comments below!  Thanks in advance!

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