If you’re looking to target White Bass, you’ve come to the right place. They are plentiful, fun to catch, and taste good too. In this article we walk you through the 7 best white bass lures
Lures for White Bass
Now if you’ve been fishing for a while and fishing for a variety of freshwater species you may already have a lot of the lures on this list. White Bass, like other freshwater predator species, tend to target small baitfish just like Largemouth Bass, Crappie, and even Panfish.
Best White Bass Lures
Spinnerbaits are a classic moving bait. It catches everything from Largies, to White Bass. They are great to throw around when you need a lot of flash and vibration in the water. They mimic a school of baitfish and are perfect to use when fish are chasing bait.
Our favorite spinnerbait is the Googan Zinger. It’s a great spinnerbait with a good stout hook. The mix of a willow blade and a colorado blade give it a unique action and makes it a versatile lure. We normally run it with a trailer hook instead of using a soft plastic trailer, but when it’s tough to get a bite we change it up and use a straight tail worm as a trailer or a zoom fluke style lure.
2. Paddle Tail Swim Baits
Paddle tail swim baits are some of the most versatile lures on the market. You can use them to target a variety of freshwater species. You can also rig them several different ways by using different types of hooks or terminal tackle.
A paddle tail swim bait mimics a minnow. Minnows are a year round food source for White Bass which makes this lure very enticing to this species. Fishing this lure is very simple, you can jig it vertically around structure or wherever you find a school of White Bass. You can also cast a paddle tail swim bait and slowly swim it or twitch it back as you retrieve your lure.
Our favorite paddle tail swim bait is the Z-Man Diezel MinnowZ Swimbait. It’s very durable and stretchy so you don’t have to worry about needing to replace your lure after one or two short strikes. It is also buoyant so it falls slowly. As it falls the paddle tail action swings side to side catching a Bass’ attention. Rig this with a 1/8th ball jig head with a good wire keeper or use super glue to keep your lure in place. If you want it to sink faster when fishing deep use a heavier jig.
3. Inline Spinners
You probably already have one or two inline spinners in your tackle box. This is one of the easiest lures to fish out of this because all you need to do is cast it out and retrieve it. If you’re fishing from a boat or a kayak you can cast it out and troll it behind you as well.
The blade of an inline spinner will flash and reflect light as it moves through the water catching a White Bass’ attention. The vibration and displacement of water will also make it easy for a fish to chase it down. Your goal is to trigger a reaction strike as you are retrieving or trolling this lure.
This lure has a treble hook at the end which is perfect since White Bass tend to have smaller mouths. Treble hooks will make it easier to hook into fish, but make sure you don’t rip the hook out of the fish’s mouth. You want a nice soft hookset.
Our favorite inline spinners are Worden’s Original Rooster Tails. You can get them almost anywhere and they come in a variety of sizes and colors. They are also very budget friendly compared to other brands so if you do get snagged and end up losing your lure it’s not the end of the world.
4. Curly Tail Grubs
Another lure you may already have is a curly tail grub. This is a soft plastic lure that comes in various sizes, colors, and almost every soft plastic brand has one in their catalog. A curly tail grub is exactly as named, a grub with a curly tail at the end.
You can buy them pre-rigged, but we prefer to buy jigs and grubs separate so we can mix and match colors. There are two main ways to fish a curly tail grub, one is to jig it vertically, the other is to cast it and retrieve it. Both are very effective depending on the conditions and your fishing situation.
If you are casting and retrieving you can still jig it as you reel in your lure, but you wont be able to present it vertically like you would if you were dropping it straight down.
Our go-to curly tail grub is the YUM Curly-Tail Grub. You can find it at any big box store and they are super affordable. They come in different sizes and colors, but for White Bass I like to stick to whites, pearls, or minnow colors. We recommend sticking to the 3 inch size. Any smaller and you’re likely to get fish like panfish.
5. Casting Spoon
Casting spoons might be something you don’t have in your tackle box, but they have been around for years. Their baitfish profile makes them perfect for targeting a variety of species, but they work really well for White Bass.
Spoons come in a variety of sizes and colors. They can be used for a wide variety of fish for both saltwater and freshwater species. Spoons are basically a metal lure in the shape of a long oval, but some can be stamped to be the shape of an actual minnow.
The metal is usually polished on a spoon and one or both sides may be painted. Usually some of the reflective metal is left exposed to bounce light off the lure and create flash in the water to attract fish.
You can fish casting spoons by vertically jigging them or cast them out and retrieve them as well. The trick for both presentations is to have movement so the lure wobbles and reflects light
6. Crank Baits
Crank baits are one of our favorite search baits. They provide a perfect baitfish imitation, come in various shapes, sizes, colors, and even rattle or are silent. When it comes to crankbaits for targeting White Bass we tend to stick to slim minnow type profiles
Crank baits can be fished at various depths depending on the size of the lip so it’s always good to carry a few options so that you can target different parts of the water column.
Our favorite Crank bait for White Bass is the Berkley Flicker Shad. The erratic wobble and fast movement are great for triggering strikes when fish are finicky. The Flicker Shad comes in different models for different diving depths and it all depends on your body of water how deep you want to go. We fish this lure on fluorocarbon line and a medium or medium heavy rod so when you set the hook the trebles wont come flying out.
7. Lipless Crank Baits
Lipless cranks baits another type of bait you most likely already have in your tackle box. If you don’t get one because they catch a TON of different fish.
Lipless crank baits are crank baits without the bill or the “lip.” Unlike crank baits, these don’t usually float to the surface they sink. As they move they vibrate side to side because of the shape of the lure.
You can fish this lure several different ways. You can retrieve it at a steady pace or vary your retrieve. You can “yo-yo” it back to yourself. You can burn it and then pause it and let it sink and then burn it again. All the while your lure is vibrating, causing flash and causing a White bass to want to bite your lure.
If you run it through cover, structure, or a ball of bait, you will most likely get a bite.
Our favorite Lipless is the Bill Lewis Rat-L-Trap. It’s a classic lipless with a baitfish profile and makes a good amount of noise in the water when it rattles. We recommend you start with the classic chrome and black color, but we also like to toss the gold and black color for those cloudy overcast days.
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White Bass Fishing Gear
There is some additional gear you might want to look into if you’re just starting out.
Rod and Reel
Rod and reel selection is a big one. We recommend a medium-heavy rod. Spinning or casting, totally up to you. A medium-heavy rod gives you the ability to use any of these lures without issue and is very versatile for targeting other species.
The line we recommend is either monofilament or fluorocarbon and stick to 6-8 lbs. test line. If you go lighter than 6 lbs, you run the risk of breaking off. Heavier than 8 lbs can be an issue of the fish you are targeting are heavily pressured and line shy.
Fishing pliers are always good to have on hand especially when dealing with White Bass. White Bass tend to have smaller mouths than Largemouth Bass. A pair of pliers will make it easier to get a hook out of its mouth.
You’re also going to want a tackle box to carry all of your lures. Any tackle box will do really, but we like the Plano EDGE Tackle trays because they are water proof and absorb moisture so your lures wont rust.
If you intend to keep any white bass and you’re fishing from the bank or out of kayak, you’re going to need a stringer. If you’re in a boat you can just put the fish in a livewell, but outside of that or if you don’t have a livewell, most states require you to have your fish on a stringer that you intend to keep.
White Bass Fishing Lures
These are our 7 best white bass fishing lures. Hopefully these lures help you catch some White Bass and enjoy your time on the water. If you’re wondering considering keeping some and you’re asking yourself are White Bass are good to eat, go read my post and find out! Now go out and catch some White Bass!