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cax1

Favorite baits for riversmallmouth

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Clear water

    tube, fluke, small worms or craws on a drop shot

Stained to muddy

     Spinnerbait, crankbait, jig

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The list is almost endless! But early on, I'd opt for hard jerks or tubes fished slow. Smallies will hit anything that represents an easy meal. The trick is finding them.  :)

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I very seldom get fish on the same bait in back to back days. But if I had to hit the river with only one bait id have to flip a coin between a Yum Crawbug and a Bomber Model A in bengal firetiger color. Topwater would be a Sammy 115.

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4 inch curly tail grubs, paca craw texas rigged, jerk baits. 

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3" curly tail grubs w/ jig head

3" plastic dads w/ jig head

trout size in-line spinners and spoons

4" plastic worms weightless

tiny torpedo

3" rapala clone

of course I use light spinning tackle w/ #6 mono

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green pumpkin seed 5" senko, 4" black mister twister with a tru turn hook, if using live bait crawdads, madtoms or large shiners. fishing at night jitterbugs 5/8 oz size color depends on moon, light night or dark night.

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These are my go-to's:

4 inch Mizmo Tube w/ 1/4 oz. head.

Storm Wiggle Wart

Rapala Shad Rap - SR5

Yo Zuri ZZ Pop

1/2 oz Booyah Moontalker Spinnerbait (night bite)

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4" yum dinger, dingers seem to sink faster witch is better for drifting in currents IMO

Bomber square A

and jig of choice with craw trailer

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Forgot bomber square a, I don't crank much but when I do in the river it is my go to!

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Lake fork baby crawdad on 1/8 ounce jighead

Rapala DT4 in bluegill around shallow rock is excellent

Bps XTS green crawdad squarebill crankbait is also a go to for shallow rocky flatsl

5inch kvd perfect plastic ocho wacky when smallies dont wana bite is also a favorite.

Last but not least any 4inch tube will get the job done

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Zoom 4" and 6" Lizards have by far out-produced any other lure for smallmouths for me.

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June, July, & August I was very sucessful last year with a 2 1/2" YUM CrawBug.....Green Pumpkin and Tequila Sunrise. The 3 1/4" did not have nearly the action of the 2 1/2" length.

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I very seldom get fish on the same bait in back to back days.

Isn't that so true, best lures for 09:

-silver rattle trap

-spinner bait (strike king burner)

-berkely gulp on a jig head

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Those 4pounders just cant seem to leave those bandits alone. Usually anything brown, yellow, green. Then i switch to more shad colors towards fall.

yes the bandits are nice, best colors, this is all you will need, rootbear, rootbear chartruse, and red craw. Talked to a guy that used to fish flw, now he just guides the white river, but he told me those are the colors to use. Also prowler lures makes a nice 3in stuby tube, get a few of those in roadkill, and you will be set.

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Without question, 4'' grub twister tails, multiple colors cuz' it can change literally from hole to hole, on a jig head sized to depth and current.  I use 6" grub twisters in early season thru mid June in Ohio.  Deadly, deadly, deadly.  The twister tail give's you the opportunity to fish it as a swim bait or with a pop/crawdad presentation on every single cast.

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For this time of year (or rather hopefully in the coming weeks) I get on the spinnerbait bite.

Didn't see cinnamon brown 4 inch senko's mentioned.  Had good success on the upper potomac last summer with these.

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In order:

1/8 oz. Strike King Mini King Buzzbait - White

1/16 - 1/8 oz. finesse tube jig with light wire hook - Watermelon, green pumpkin/gold, smoke/red flk.

Zoom Super Fluke - 3/0 red EWG - White or Ark Shiner

Rapala X-Rap and small lipless cranks - Ghost/white/bone/silver, gold shiner with orange belly, clown

1/4 oz spinnerbait - Gold shiner or olive, with gold double willow. White with white tandem willow.

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