Crank bait cadence


As we approach some post-spawn fishing, there is probably no bait more fun to fish than a crank bait. The key though, is making the bait attractive to the fish, and that may take some thought. I know many of us just throw the crank bait out and reel it back, but there’s more to it than that, and putting your mind to work on how to make this bait life-like is a major part of getting a bite on crank baits. One key is to understand the dynamics of the crank bait you’re fishing, as there are many different styles and sizes of crank baits.
In general, it’s all about just a few presentations that control what a crank bait looks like in the water: retrieve speed, depth and erratic movement. During many months of fishing every year we have several seasonal changes that affect the fish and how fast or slow you move the crank bait tells the story. When we have cold fronts come through slowing the retrieve is a major factor in getting a bite. Sometimes just a very slow wobble is the presentation when the cold zaps the life out of the fish; slow it down, crawl it, and many times it offers what bass want during these cold fronts. Speed it up when the water is clear and the fish are active, giving them just a fast look at the bait, counting on the bass to react to your bait moving quickly by them.  
Depth control comes under that old saying “fish where the fish are,” although it is a known fact that bass feed upward, depth is an important factor because, many times, the bottom becomes your friend when fishing crank baits. If you’re bouncing off the bottom, you’re getting the fish to react to your bait and the result is, many times, catching fish. If you are fishing suspending fish, having a crank bait in the depth range where the fish are suspending is key.  
Lastly, erratic movement - if you’re not twitching and changing speeds with a crank bait then it’s not working for you. These crank baits all have different wobbles, some tight, some wide, but change in erratic movement gets you bit. Use your wrists, arms, and rod tips to change direction, speed and movement, and you will be a better crank bait fisherman.

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