Special BB Issues

Special-like issue: Spawn and post-spawn baits and stuff

Another special BassBlaster issue, this time with info on spawn and post-spawn baits and “stuff.” Mostly Blaster sponsors because they of course support the BB and your enjoyment of it. But first and foremost they make great bassin’ stuff…which I use…which is why they’re in the Blaster.

Cover 3 different phases below, depending on what the fish are doing where you live. Hope you get something out of it and tx for reading mang!


Why white? Because bass love white crawdads!

Okay not really — it’s cuz it’s easier to see a white bait on the bed, and see it disappear when a bass sucks it in.

The Jason Christie-designed Christie Craw has a compact presentation = better for more hookups. Can also Texas-rig it, shakey-head it, etc. Christie designed it, so I wouldn’t bet a’gin it:


Think this time of year is all about plastics or jigs or whatever? Nope. Topwaters are great for covering spawning water, finding fish when bass are roaming on cloudy days, and slashing strikes when you find ’em.

The X-Rap Prop rocks because the counter-rotating props mean the bait doesn’t move forward as much, and the feathered rear treble gets the bass when the bait’s just sitting still. The bait also has an “internal long-cast mechanism” — which I hope is self-explanatory. Check it:


Mark Davis almost single-handedly “made” the Rage Menace when he dominated the Elite Series in early 2014. He likes to use it as a spawn search bait on the back of a 3/8- or 1/2-oz Strike King Jointed Structure Head with 17-lb fluorocarbon.

“In clear water I prefer candy craw or green pumpkin. In stained water, I have better luck with black and blue.”

Here’s candy craw:

Early Post-Spawn


(Yep, it looks that great in real life too.) You prolly know poppers are a great way to catch bucks in the early post-spawn. Git ‘er bit!

Classic qualifier Chris Jones tells you how he fishes and rigs for a Boss Pop:

Here’s the problem with the VMC Gliding Jig — it’s a new type of bait. And us bass-heads are crazy slooooooooow to pick up on truly new things. But YOU — yes you — as a certified bass nut should be like the starship Enterprise: “explore strange new worlds, seek out new life and new civilizations, boldly go where no one has gone before.”

Something like that anyhow. The Gliding Jig has a unique (key word for bassin’ = something different) slow, fluttering fall that can trigger negative fish like new post-spawners. Watch the first 3 seconds of this vid and you’ll see what I mean:

Comes in willow and Oklahoma. At least get one and try it….

> “Locating spawning areas is the key to finding postspawn bass because during this time the fish will be in transition from these areas to deeper water.”> …fishing just outside of that spawning area…typically the mouth of a creek or pocket, or in grass lakes it could be the outside edge of the vegetation.

> “I like to use moving baits when fishing for post-spawn bass. The Strike King Pure Poison and the Strike King Pro-Model Spinnerbait are great baits to use when targeting these fish. Another one of my favorites [is the] Rage Blade.”

Listen: If for some crazy reason you’re not a-fishin’ ‘Traps around the spawn, you’re flat missing out. Period. They’re the #1 bait that time of year. Might even out-fish a Senko. That’s all you need to know about it — except that you absolutely must have a few in Rayburn red craw:

Get ’em at TackleWarehouse, or more colors at the ‘Trap website.

From Bassmaster.com:

> A more typical situation is that there’ll be a ditch or channel running through the middle of a spawning bay. Depending upon the water level there might be a lot of water over it, or a little. Either way, the bass will hold on those edges.

> They’ll be on whatever cover is there. It might be a stump, a brush pile, a laydown or a rock. But if you expect to catch them you have to fish the cover, not the drop. They aren’t in the channel and they haven’t dropped down into the deep water. They’re using the cover as a stopping place before they do that.

> If the water’s clear, I like to show them something in green or green pumpkin. If it’s real dirty, without a lot of visibility, I’ll go with black/blue or something real dark. For those times when it’s in between I’ll go with something like a black neon…dark but with some flake or sparkle to it.

> My absolute, hands down favorite water color is muddy – light to dark brown. I know it isn’t pretty but it does produce, especially if it’s been that way for a couple of days. Drop a plastic bait right in the cover and hang on. My best color for muddy water is black or blue/black.

> I haven’t mentioned a particular bait style because I think location and cover are the real keys to what I’m talking about.

Post-Spawn/Early Summer


1. YUM Christie Craw and Christie Critter (tin foil)

Both great baits fo sho, and that flashy tin foil color is great for the shad spawn. Here’s what they look like underwater:

Little tip for ya: Jason likes to use contrasting colors, like a green pumpkin jig with a black/blue trailer. In this case he sticks the tin foil Christie Craw on the back of a white BOOYAH Swim’n Jig for a killer shad imitation:

The Christie Critter now comes in a “Baby” (3.5″) version too.

A walking bait is a no-brainer this time of year, but the Top Walker is different than most:

Uh…yeah, not that kind of different. What I mean is, the Top Walker walks true — it keeps the hooks directly under the bait instead of rolling side to side. According to the guy who helped design it — Brandon Palaniuk — that means more hookups. Check what he says about it here:


3. Strike King XDs

Gotta hit these again because they just catch ’em. 6XD = Keith Combs’ favorite crankbait. 10XD = must use if if the fish are deep.


Here you go:

That one and many more caught dropshotting 4″ Limit Worms on…Lake Fork!! Two best colors were green pumpkin and meat locker (love that name).

Baits are scented plus have the “Core Strength” feature — they’re poured around a Mylar fabric core that the hook goes through so the worm holds up after multiple fish.

One of those baits that works all times of the year.

Designed by Elitist Russ Lane, the Fat Papa 70 runs 10-12′, has a wide wobble and aggressive action, and he claims it catches the bigger ones in schools, which would be sweet. Here’s Russ talkin’ ’bout it:

All-Around Rod


Do I like me some bassin’ gear? You bet. But I also like to keep it simple rod-wise because:

  • I can’t afford a ton of rods (of the rods I want!).
  • I usually fish the same ol’ ways — even though I like learning about other stuff, which is weird.
  • I like the same feel with my setups so I can make the most use of my limited time.

So let me intro you to the 7′ Kistler Magnesium 2 heavy-medium heavy, extra-fast tip. I asked Trey Kistler to pick out a good all-around rod for mostly jigs/plastics, and could also do topwaters and a few other hard baits. Mostly fishing fluoro. He sent me that rod and…IT KILLS.

Kistler makes rods for different techniques, including that one. But if you’re like me and…

…(name that movie) then that may be the rod for you.Btw: Did you know you can custom-order your own Kistler? Though not Mag 2s, still pretty cool.

More Good Stuff


He likes it for longer casts and no stretch, but says you’ll have to go to a softer rods. He likes 30-lb Sunline SX1.


Here’s KVD talkin’ ’bout how he used one in his win at Toledo Bend:

Have heard MANY stories about HydroWaves firing up fish. It’s not a miracle, but based on what I’ve heard it sure helps.

Whatever your style is — crankin’, flippin’, swimmin’, jiggin/wormin’ — when you’re doing it in the heat, you want the lightest-weight (NOT lightest-action!) rod/reel combo you can get. The new Denali Kovert Lites hit that’n on the head.

The rods are 25% LIGHTER than the already-light Kovert series. Very tough to do that in rod-building. At $150 on Tackle Warehouse, reasonably priced too.


Take that rod and put this reel on it, and you’re good. I’ll talk about the Curado 70 whenever I get the chance cuz it might be my fave Shimano reel yet. Light, compact, smooth. Won’t use it for deep crankin’, but for everything else it’s money. Just my 2c.

…can result in better hooksets and fewer lost fish:

Tackle Warehouse carries ’em.

CA dude Dave Romanus got sick of hooks getting tangled in other bassin’ setups, his clothes, his toenails, etc., and didn’t like the solutions he tried so he did what all red-blooded Americans do: He invented something better. It’s called The Bait Sack — basically a vinyl pouch that clips to the rod blank and keeps trebles out of trouble.

Get that? Trebles, no troubles.

Comes in three sizes. How it works: Squeeze The Bait Sack open, drop the bait in. Snag-free and clips to the rod blank. Line catch keeps the bait in place.


7. BassU TV: Post-spawn


Hard baits with Ish
Post-spawn funk with Christie

If you fish derbies, you need to. The #1 and only source for all contingency programs in one place, and the website just keeps getting better.

A little expensive, but if you ever use a cooler or ice, you need to have one. Cheap coolers are just plain bad, kinda like:

K2 is like:
Jay Kumar is the guy who created BassFan.com, co-hosted Loudmouth Bass with Zona, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer and a whole lot more in bassin’. Jay Kumar’s BassBlaster is a daily-ish roundup of the best in bassin’, and is the #2 daily read on any given day in the wide world o’ bass. Get the Jay Kumar’s BassBlaster app:

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