The Best White Bass Lures
White bass are often forgotten by bass fishermen. Largemouth and smallmouth bass grow to larger sizes and are considered more desirable to catch. But white bass can be a blast to catch, especially if you use ultralight tackle. White bass are also a great option to fish for when teaching a younger fisherman the ropes. So what are the best white bass lures?
In this article, we’ll cover the best white bass lures depending on the season/fishery, where and when to fish for white bass, as well as what kind of tackle you should use. By the time you finish reading, you’ll be ready to catch your share of white bass!
In a hurry? Here’s a quick summary of the best white bass lures from our experience.
What Are White Bass?
Also called sand bass, white bass are silvery-white in color and grow up to several pounds. The largest recorded white bass was 6 lbs and 13 ounces. White bass are abundant all over North America but are most prevalent in the midwest. Pennsylvania around Lake Eerie is full of white bass along with the Detroit and Arkansas rivers.
White bass primarily eat nymphs and insects, but will also eat small fish such as minnows shad. They are sight feeding fish, which means they actively hunt for their prey. They’re often found feeding where other juvenile fish such as walleye. If you see shad schools jumping out of the water, then that’s where you’ll want to present your white bass lures.
Where Do White Bass Live?
White bass enjoy living in large lakes and river estuaries. During mating season in the spring, they are found more often in shallower waters such as streams, creeks, and inlets. Look for underwater cover and shelter from direct sunlight to find where white bass like to live.
The Best Tackle for White Bass
Since white bass are relatively small, light to ultra-light tackle works best. A trout rod with an ultra-light spinning reel is a perfect combination for fishing for white bass. You want to make sure you use light tackle; if you use tackle that is rated for heavier fish, you won’t be able to feel when a white bass bites. It also won’t be any fun to reel in as you’ll bully the fish out of the water too much
When to Fish for White Bass
The best time of year to fish for white bass is in the spring between the months of March and April. This is when White Bass spawn and congregate in large numbers close to shore. When white bass spawn, they become much more aggressive and will bite at many types of lures thrown at them.
You can still catch white bass other months out of the year (such as later in the summer and fall), but we recommend fishing for white bass in the spring or when the water temperature is around 50 degrees Fahrenheit. This is when you’ll get the most bang for your buck.
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How to Fish for White Bass
There are many different fishing techniques that work well for white bass. Both live/real bait and artificial lures will work depending on your presentation. We’ll cover our favorite techniques and favorite white bass lures below.
Artificial White Bass Lures
The best size artificial white bass lures are between 1/16 ounces and ⅛ ounces. Artificial jigs, spinning lures, and very small spoons can all work well for white bass. Our favorites are Blue Fox Vibrax spinners and Storm WildEye Shads. Since shad are one of the white bass’s natural prey, using lures that imitate shad often work very well.
As far as presentation goes, we recommend casting your lure close to where the white bass are feeding/spawning and retrieving with vigor. Spawning white bass are aggressive and will strike at an annoying lure that gets to close to them. If the action you’re giving your lure isn’t working, be sure to mix it up!
Natural White Bass Lures
If you want to use natural white bass lures, we recommend going to the fishing spot you’re planning on fishing at ahead of time and catching some live insects or worms. You can then use these with an appropriate sized hook, and know that you’ve picked bait that white bass like to eat.
Similarly to artificial white bass lures, cast your natural white bass lures close to where you think white bass are feeding or spawning. With natural bait you don’t necessarily need to add additional movement; the creature will move on its own. What you do need to do is be extra attentive for bites. When you feel a bite, set the hook with a light tug.
White Bass Bait Options
If you don’t have artificial white bass lures or natural white bass lures, you can always try using artificial bait options. We’ve found that the trout flavored Powerbait works well for white bass as well as Turbo Dough.
Artificial bait presentation is very similar to natural lure presentation: cast your bait close to where you think the white bass are feeding, then wait. Patience is crucial when using artificial bait! If you don’t feel any bites after 15 minutes, reel your line and check to make sure your hook still has bait on it.
Although small, white bass can be one of the most rewarding fish to fish for. Their aggressiveness during spawning makes them easy for inexperienced and expert fishermen alike to catch. Teaching a younger fisherman how to fish? Try taking them fishing for white bass using our white bass lure recommendations. They’ll end up getting many opportunities to reel fish in and have something to take home at the end of the day. Have a white bass fishing story to share with us? Shoot us a note below in the comments!