Shad-imitation baits are undeniably effective throughout the fall months, but the transition stage between summer and fall can actually make for some tough fishing conditions. Here in Georgia, we still have water temperatures in the 80-degree range, so although the calendar says it’s October, Mother Nature and the bass haven’t exactly caught on yet.
Despite the confused bass, I’ve been enjoying a lot of success with the Big Bite Baits Swimming Jerk Minnow. When hard baits fail, this bait puts a lot of nice bass in the boat.
I love fishing with soft jerkbaits and small swimbaits, and the Swimming Jerk Minnow is an outstanding hybrid of the two styles. Its tail kicks very violently as the body rolls side-to-side, and it has outperformed similar baits for me recently.
- Straight reel—I’ve been able to find a few small schools of bass despite the warm water and the Swimming Jerk Minnow has been very effective when straight-reeled through the schools. Even on a slow retrieve, the tail kicks very well, which has allowed me to get below the 1-pound schoolers and target the larger, less aggressive bass.
- Burn it—If you’re looking for quantity in the fall, you can burn the Swimming Jerk Minnow over shallow flats and catch a bunch of fish. A fast retrieve speed gives the bait somewhat of a “slithering” action which is very unique. This is a great technique for covering water under high, bright skies.
- Jerk it—When most folks think of soft jerkbaits, they envision a traditional fork-tail design. I’ve been rigging the Swimming Jerk Minnow weightless and skipping it underneath docks and around shallow brush piles with a lot of success. I use a simple “twitch, twitch, pause” cadence and most of my bites have come on the fall. As the bait falls, its tail slowly kicks side to side, displacing more water compared to traditional soft jerkbaits.
The Swimming Jerk Minnow is a lot beefier than many small swimbaits. This has allowed me to have much better casting distance and also promotes the use of a larger hook.
Whether you’re fan-casting windblown flats or making long casts to shallow, clear water brush, you’ll really enjoy the castability of this bait. The meatier profile also makes it easy to fish the Swimming Jerk Minnow on casting gear, which allows for heavier line when fishing around the thick stuff.
This bait doesn’t tear easily, so I’ve been able to use a 4/0 and sometimes even a 5/0 hook. You’ll get a bit more action from a 4/0 hook, but don’t be afraid to use the 5/0 when the fish are short-striking the bait. I love fishing around heavy cover and the Swimming Jerk Minnow works very well with thicker, heavy-duty hooks. It won’t tear when rigging and it’s very resistant to large, wallowed-out holes after hours of use.
Catch more bass with one bait
Small swimbaits are notorious for being “one hit wonders”—if you get a single bite on them, you’ll often find your paddle tail missing. Fortunately, the Swimming Jerk Minnow is very durable and holds up well to multiple fish catches. They come in packs of 10 and I’ve been able to fish several long days on a single pack. There’s nothing worse than running out of a productive bait with hours left to fish and you won’t have to worry about that with the Swimming Jerk Minnow.
The Big Bite Baits Swimming Jerk Minnow is available at TackleWarehouse.com. They’re priced at $2.99 per 10-pack, so you won’t have to turn your wallet upside-down to get your hands on a quality bass fishing bait.