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  Sep 30, 2016

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Ken Sturdivant

Fishing with the Stick Bait

by Ken Sturdivant
Southern Fishing Schools Inc.

Top water fishing is always exciting because the strikes can occur from the time the baits hit the water to the end of the retrieve. Water temperatures are already high and shallow as well as deep fish will take a very effective bait all day and even at night. The lure is called the stick bait. This bait is very easy to use and on light line top water fishing becomes even more challenging. This lure is also referred to as the jerk bait simply because that is how it can be fished. With simply jerks on the rod tip these lures dance across the water and fish cannot resist a tempting meal. These baits can be fished on the surface to 5 feet deep.

Many anglers have discovered that making the lure move in a rhythm can be very effective. Once the lure reaches a likely stump or grass line the lure can be stopped and it then floats up on the surface. Many times this lure may be dead still and all of a sudden a bass comes out of the darkness and destroys the bait. These lures come in a wide variety of sizes and colors. In the early spring, the lures should be smaller because the bait fish are small. Then as the summer progresses the lures can be as long a 7 inches and still be very productive.

Most anglers find that using light line and a spinning or spin cast reel is much easier to use with these lures. The line is almost always very loose on the reel due to the lack of pressure placed on the lures retrieves. A shorter rod can be helpful because the rod tip is pulled downward on the retrieve. Short pulls or jerks can make the fish react to the bait and this makes the lure look alive to the fish.

Colors are as endless as the rainbow and almost any combination can work. Shad, bream and blue and silver combinations can catch fish almost all summer long. In colored or stained water brighter colors are easier for the fish to see. In clear water pick try a wide variety of colors until a pattern works. Cast these lures and then start with simple downward jerks on the rod and take up the line at the same time. Practice with these lures and duplicate the retrieves that draw strikes.



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