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Jointed Swimbaits: How and When to Fish

Jerkbaits and flat-sided crankbaits are go-to hard baits during the cold-water months but have you ever considered hard, multi-jointed swimbaits? Noted bass pro and lure designer Cliff Pace explains when and how to fish jointed swimbaits with an emphasis on late winter and spring fishing in clear water.



Baits that can be fished with a smooth or erratic action but with minimal forward movement often outproduce when targeting neutral to negative bass. As the underwater video shows, segmented swimbaits achieve this ‘hang time’ but with a less pronounced start and stop than jerkbaits. And similar to glide baits, multi-jointed swimbaits can be fished side-to-side almost in place, but the extra joints tend to produce a tighter, subtler action on a straight retrieve.

Pace explains how to fish jointed swimbaits under a range of conditions from slow and smooth during cold fronts to burning just under the surface when things heat up. Lastly, he details the optimal rod, reel, and line combo for working the bait and getting consistent hookups.