Though there are many similarities in the lures that will work for smallmouth bass and largemouth bass, there are also a few differences in which lures are best for catching bronzebacks. Smallmouth, for one thing, are more often found in streams than are largemouth. But this only accounts for some of the differences. Part of the difference is also that smallmouth bass tend to have slightly different diets than do largemouth bass.
One of the top types of lures for smallmouth bass is that which imitates a crayfish. As smallmouth often are found in habitat where crayfish are abundant, this is a natural food source. Some even claim that smallmouth bass excrete a substance from their skin that mimics a crayfish smell, which in turns lures the crayfish from its underwater hold. Our favorite crayfish crankbait is the Rebel Wee Crawfish.
Also in the crankbait category, and a surefire smallie lure where they are feeding on minnows and other smaller fish, is the Bomber Model A Shallow crankbait. It dives to a depth of 3 feet to 5 feet so is suitable for many river fishing situations.
If you are looking for a softbait lure, again, you might want to start by looking at the crayfish imitations. Our favorite in this category is the Mad Man Crawfish Tube, which comes in either a 3 inch or a 4 inch tube. These can be fished in a number of fashions. Perhaps at the top of our list for these lures is the texas-rigged system.
There are other soft plastics that are also often very effective. These can be either texas-rigged or carolina-rigged. There are many plastics that we have found effective. One of our favorites is the Zoom 3 1/2 inch Zoom. It comes in a variety of colors. Two colors we have found very successful is the watermelonseed and green pumpkin.
If you like spinnerbaits, they can be very effective lures for catching smallmouth bass also. As with other lures, part of the success of a lure, is believing in it. It seems that spinnerbait fishermen are more devout than about any other type. Anyway, the lure we seem to catch more smallmouth on than any other is the Terminator Tiny T.
Finally, many smallmouth bass fishermen find a lot of success fishing jigs. For these, we love the Smallie’s Delight line from a company called Winco’s. The jigs are for the most part crayfish imitations, and are pretty darn reasonable in price.
So, we have looked at at least one lure type in the major bass lure categories that are absolutely capable of hooking you up with a bunch of fish. Now it’s up to you to get out there and cover some water. Finally, we encourage you to practice catch-and-release whenever you can, and do all you can to conserve and enhance our natural resources.