Tossing crankbaits for largemouth bass is an exciting and effective approach when fish are up shallow. Square bill cranks account for a lot of caught fish, and a recent wrinkle is offering up the chance to catch even more.
|Silent crankbaits, like this Strike King KVD Square Bill Silent Crankbait, is a good choice to toss when fish are skittish.|
Here is the lowdown on silent crankbaits— and the scenarios you should be tossing them.
Why They Work
Silent crankbaits are relatively new on the scene. The last few years have spawned a new generation of "rattle-free" baits, and the results have been good.
Think of a silent bait as a distressed shad or minnow — cautiously swimming yet attempting not to be noticed. It is like that after dinner mint as opposed to the heaping dessert. Predator fish prey on the vulnerable. Silent baits play this part well.
I like to toss a silent crank when fish are skittish. Those days when any unfounded movement or action will spook them. This is especially true when dealing with excessively skinny water. More so if that skinny water is crystal clear.
Pressured fish also call for a less-than-in-your-face crankbait. When shorelines have been beat up from angler pressure — especially after a tournament or busy weekend — fish will often still respond to this natural and subtle lure choice.
Cold front conditions, or simply cold water, is another pattern where silent cranks definitely hold their own. Think of it as finesse fishing — but without a downgrade in lure size.
What About Rattles?
Don't get me wrong. There is a time and place for silent baits. They fill a niche and work well when conditions are right.
Rattle baits, on the other hand, succeed when fish are wound up and aggressive. That added sound appears to ramp them up more — and often equates to bone jarring strikes.
They also excel when water clarity is less than prime. Sound works to your advantage when you are met with stained or muddy conditions. Rattle baits win the race hands down.
Give silent crankbaits some water time this season. When used under the right conditions, they will definitely put more fish in the boat.