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Jedwards36

Topwater River Smallmouth

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Classic Rapala minnow.

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Try a Rapala Skitter Prop. It's a propellor type bait, ~3.5" long. For colors: Green Frog which has a white underside, or Firetiger which has an orange underside. They only come in one size, but they work on the smaller rivers up here in the North. Twitch it slow, or rip it with some force, they dive and leave a nice bubble trail.

Change the hooks out when you get it though, from my experience the stock VMC hooks are lower quality, and dull very quickly. Throw some mustad ultra points on it, or some gammies and you're good to go.

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My poppers of choice are the Yo Zuri ZZ Pop or the Pop n' Splash- but those are both hard to find now. Skitter-pops and Chug Bugs are good alternatives. Buzzbaits also work great.

When the water in your river gets really low and clear, make sure you you throw topwater around riffles, both upstream in the push, and downstream where the riffle is really churning up the water and the bottom starts to gradually drop back off. Throw into the fast current and work the bait quickly. It's some of the most fun you'll ever have.

Also, don't forget to try a Jitterbug at night.

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The Sammy 100, and LC Gunfish 95 are my go to topwaters, followed by buzzbaits.

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2 1/2" Heddon Torpedo

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2 1/2" Heddon Torpedo

i agree and if you can find it in clear for a clear stream hold the rod tight

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My largest smallie came by Zara Spook, the original spook that was 3/4oz and used hook hangers, and I still use it but it is not a numbers bait. The Zara puppy was a good bait but exactly the opposite of its big brother the spook, great numbers baits but it dosn't seem to draw bigger fish. Enter the Super Spook Jr., this is the exact bait you're looking for, it is 1/2oz and cast really well but the design is perfect, wide but not long, it has an ability to appeal to a lot of fish but will also draw big fish. Walking baits are the best producers for smallmouth for me with prop baits like a dying flutter or a Heddon Torpedo a close second. I use the prop baits on river smallies when there is a breeze and the slack or slow current areas have some ripples, the walking baits work great during still times, throw the super spook jr. into a pool at the end of a riffle and after letting it sit for 5 or 10 seconds begin walking and don't pause until you reach the end of the pool, more often than not it will only get a foot or so before getting crushed.

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Zoom Super Fluke fished eratically on top.......cast and hold on.

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I have always done well with a tiny torpedo the silver with black markings and back. Throw it out and pop your rod tip to make it zip across the water the prop on the back will throw lots of water and make a good bubble trail. I have caught both numbers as well as some quality fish as well. I have also had success with the 31/2 or 4 in bass assassin in the black and grey color a small worm hook and a eratic action and its game on. If you have a problem with the fish missing the assassin I have also slid a small treble hook onto the worm hook and that improved my hook ups by far.

Matt

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Zara Spook for me, too!

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Rapala skitter pop and prop. I like the Rapala popper the best probably because of its action and the feather on the back treble.

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Brett, The Skitter-PROP is the killer smallmouth bait!.....You have a bad memory dude!

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I have been scoring lately on the Pop-R. This is on the flats of the Ohio River (BIG) at first light and at dusk. I also throw 1/8 oz buzzbaits. If you are fishing smaller rivers(riffles/pools), try fishing a buzzbait through the deeper riffles, they whack it.

Mike

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Try the Booyah pond magic. White is always a solid choice.

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Early morning, I find the original Pop-R to be extremely effective, especially in a no-wind situation. Pop it once.....let it drift down stream for a bit. Then pop it again. That usually does it. When there is a little chop on the water, I like the Sammy.

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Depends on what they want. For slower presentations and neutral bass, minnow baits like the Bomber Long A (specially treated for more bouyancy) or a Bagley floating minnow. For days when they want more noise, a 1/4 oz. Pop R is very effective and cost effective. For quick moving and audacious aggression from unpressured and active bass, any medium sized buzzbait covers the water very quickly. Great all aroiund bait for "walking the dog" is the new Strike King walking bait in the smaller size. Generally fish the shad patterns, except in dingy water, go with a black buzzbait. The reason I didn't put in any prop baits is that they can be prone to line twisting, and the props can get out of tune quickly unless handled by an experienced angler.

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Small 1/8th oz buzz baits like the one strike king sells, and pop rs are awesome. Those are the only two i use while wade fishing for smallies and we do awesome in northern michigan.

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Rebel minnows in tigerfire. Both the 2/12in and 31/2in. Crank, wait, crank, wait, crank, wait... Caught over ten in just 40 mins on the river in one spot the other day.

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