The heat is on and it’s hot not only from a stand point of weather, but for bass fishing as well in your favorite body of water, which includes local ponds, lakes, rivers and reservoirs.
If you’re a bass angler, then you know that it’s been rewarding this spring leading up to summer, fishing for smallies and old bucket-mouth on traditional locations.
As a rule of thumb, you never leave active fish to go find fish elsewhere, because that kind of bad karma can come back and bite you in the rear. But when the bites on, it’s the best time to get out there and uncover a new honey-hole in not so prominent locations and that calls for an aggressive approach using high percentage techniques and a whole lot of confidence in a bait.
At any rate, call it your search and destroy campaign, so to speak. Put together a game plan and fish the not so apparent locations that have all the makings of good bass waters in terms of habitat. You could find an untouched resource that you never knew was there.
To do this you really need a super duty well pronounced search bait that will not only entice bass outside their strike zone but calls bass in from a far as well.
Enter the Rapala X-rap. The extreme action slash bait that’s a proven producer, giving you the confidence to fish any location. This bait is so versatile because it’s composed of attributes that allow for so many triggering qualities that bass can’t resist. The X-rap also keeps you tuned in to it’s performance from a mechanical stand point and allows you many options of fishing it differently.
What you are looking for is a reactionary bite when fishing these new locations, to find it’s potential. Look at the lay of the land and understand the bottom composition to establish the most likely spots.
Bass in most cases and especially during the sunny hot days will relate to cover and stage on deeper edges to ambush prey using sight and sensitivity from their lateral lines to pick-up on an easy meal. An injured baitfish or crawdad trying to get away is always on the bass menu so it’s important to simulate a realistic retrieval and cadence.
A typical walk-the-dog rhythm and an aggressive stop-and-go pattern with an occasional twitch here and there is how you want to run the bait.
Rapala’s pro staff Bernie Schultz says “the X-rap can achieve those wide swings from side to side which is what smallmouth and spotted bass really like.”
Remember this bait has neutral buoyancy (more of a momentary hover) but only for a few seconds before slowly descending nose first and that’s when a lot of your strikes will happen, on the downfall.
However, you’re not after the subtle biters. You’re there to find the most aggressive takers holding in the area and you’re on a mission, taking no prisoners.
Have a few rods pre-tied and ready to go with different colors of the X-Rap. If you’re not getting bit with one color after a few casts, go to the next color and work the area to get a pattern going.
Use your electric trolling motor to keep you positioned correctly and work the entire area whether it be a rock pile on a shoreline, riprap off a dam, brushy areas in a creek-bed, rocky points, breaks, break-lines, deep shelves and underwater bottom transitions.
Use your polarized sunglasses and look at the bait all the way up to the boat for follow-ups. That’s usually a good indication that fish are in the area.
The X-rap will entice bass and expand its strike zone, drawing them in for a closer look. When presented aggressively enough, the extreme action slash-bait has the triggering qualities like no other lure and will get bass to explode on it, if you will.
Look for the X-Rap in different colors and sizes at your favorite local tackle shops.