Wired2fish traveled to Arkansas to pick the bass-savvy brain of Spencer Shuffield. The goal? Learn how to find and catch bass during the fall months on Mid-South reservoirs. A rain break provided an excellent excuse to film this sit-down on Spencer’s top 3 baits for catching fall bass under various scenarios. He shares the details on his top baits, where he fishes them, and how and when to apply them to catch more bass. *Product links at the bottom.
Shuffield’s 3 bait approach to fall bass fishing:
- Jerkbaits. Water temperatures in the high 40s to low 50s draw bass out of river channels and up onto long points. Shuffield uses his LiveScope to find schools of bass relating to wood on the tips of long points. A jerkbait is his tool of choice for its ability to draw fish up and trigger the school. He explains the importance of making subsequent casts to pull them up — it’s common to catch 3 to 5 fish before they stop biting. Color can be an essential factor. He favors natural colors on sunny days or in clear water and brighter colors on overcast days or in dirty water. If there’s a pile of shad around, use a non-natural color to make your bait stand out.
- Drop shot. After tuning up the school on a jerkbait, Shuffield grabs the tried and true drop shot to catch a few more. While the jerkbait draws bass up, the drop shot sucks them back to the bottom. The rapid descent of the drop shot in a school sends fish rushing down to grab the bait. A straight-tail 6-inch worm gets it done, with purple being Shuffield’s most consistent color. Rigging is kept simple with a size 1 or 2 drop shot hook, a 5/16-ounce weight, and a 12-inch leader.
- Squarebill crankbait. Don’t overlook the backs of creeks or pockets, especially those with ditches and a little bit of flow. The squarebill gets the nod in this environment, as you can cover a ton of water and contact fish-holding cover like stumps and brush with minimal snagging.
- JERKBAIT – Hardcore Minnow Flat 110SP, colors: Ghost Pearl Shad and Citrus Shad
- DROP SHOT SETUP
- WORM – Roboworm 6” Straight Trail, color: Margarita Mutilator (top fall color)
- WEIGHT – ARK Fishing No Chip Tungsten Tear Drop Shot Weights, 5/16-ounce
- LINE – Yo-Zuri T-7 Premium Fluorocarbon Line, 16-pound
- CRANKBAIT – Hardcore Crank SR 65F, color – Citrus Shad