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Fall crankbait primer

September 22, 2012 at 10:07 PM

Williamson County Tourism Bureau

Fall bass fishing can be pretty tough. 

Clear October skies and relatively clear water sends anglers in search of darker water. 

The shallow and slightly stained are best. 

Changing temperatures in the air and water seem to confuse fish until the weather stabilizes.

Even though shallow water cranking is considered a spring technique,

it is equally effective as the water begins to cool in the fall. 

As the water cools, the surface is often swarming with schools of bait fish.

They go on one last desperate search for warmer water. 

One idea is to fish a crankbait just under the forage fish on the surface.

Begin cranking with small light colored lures. 

Color seems is less important than is size. 

By beginning with small white, green or chartreuse colors one is able to locate fish and then change to a larger crankbait. 

The larger crankbaits take larger fish as well as the smaller ones. 

The smaller ones tend not to take as many large fish.

The crankbait’s running depth is affected by the length of the cast, line diameter and the design of the lure.

It should not be just cast and cranked casually back to the boat. 

The speed should be changed allowing a fish to react. 

To help anglers know quickly the depth each bait will run, most manufacturers mark the package with information about the depth zone.

As a rule of thumb, an angler can count on a bait with a larger lip running deeper than one with a less prominent one. 

The most important factor is that the lure remains in the fish’s strike zone. 

Lure speed has been found to not significantly effect the depth at which it runs. 

In fact some lures actually will run shallower at faster speeds.

It is important to be steady and learn from experience just how deep the lure in running.

Line diameter does affect the running depth. 

For each two pounds of line weight, an angler can subtract about one foot from the lure’s depth. 

The angle of the rod during the retrieve does not vary the depth at which they run.

Crankbaits are a one of the best tools for covering a lot of water to find fish. 

By finding a good pattern, knowing the lure color to use and the right cover to fish, an angler can travel over more water with a crankbait than any other type of lure.

However some times fishermen fished above the big ones with surface lures and below them with the deep running crankbaits. 

The strike zone and be in between. 

Once one finds that zone, it is just a matter of culling to find the big guy.

For more information about recreational opportunities in southern Illinois, contact the Williamson County Tourism Bureau, 1602 Sioux Drive, Marion, Illinois 62959 or call 1-800-GEESE-99. 

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