I put a lot of effort into testing all different types of crankbaits throughout the year. Everybody has their thingâsome like rods and reels, others get all jacked up about swimbaits. Iâm a bit different. I absolutely love a good crankbait. Thereâs nothing better than feeling your rod slowly load and feeling a few slow, heavy head shakes on the end of your line.
The crankbait bite is just now starting to develop in my area, which has given me an opportunity to spend a considerable amount of time with the Jackall Aska SR. Iâve been using the 50 series due to the coolder water temperatures and have become a really big fan of it. Itâs a small crankbait, measuring only 2 inches and weighing just 1/4-ounce, which makes it an excellent choice when targeting especially finicky bass.
After my testing, I believe this crankbait has several noteworthy characteristics.
- Deflects well
- Small size pays big dividends
- Ready to fish
- Unique belly hook keeper
Crashes through cover with minimal hang-ups
A lot of folks seem to believe that, just because a crankbait has a square-shaped bill, they can burn it through everything imaginable with absolutely zero hang-ups. Thatâs simply not the case. Every squarebill is going to get snagged periodically, but if you take advantage of the buoyancy of the Jackall Aska SR and retrieve it accordingly, youâll be quite impressed by its ability to come through cover.
Like I mentioned earlier, this is a small crankbait. And to be honest, small plugs arenât always my favorite when Iâm targeting really thick cover such as laydowns and ripraps. A lot of them lack the buoyancy of larger crankbaits, inhibiting them from effectively floating about any obstructions. In addition, small crankbaits are often adorned with fairly diminutive bills which can cause issues for heavy cover fishermen.
After seeing the Aska SRâs size, itâs safe to say that I had mediocre expectations for its deflection properties. But I was really surprised, to be honest. Itâs very buoyant for its size, so when I slam into a log, stump or piece of chunk rock, Iâm able to quickly pause my retrieve to allow the lure to clear any snag-inducing cover. I was especially impressed by how efficiently Iâm able to fish it on long stretches of riprapâits fiberglass bill deflects very well off of jagged rocks.
When it comes to fishing wood cover, itâs much better than many squarebills I own. Is it the best? That might be a stretch, but itâs very impressive when you âwormâ it through gnarly laydowns. By âwormingâ it, Iâm essentially referring to moving the lure with only your rod tip, while using your reel to retrieve slack line. Iâve had a lot of fun using this technique with the Aska SR around shallow brushpiles in front of homeownersâ docks.
Youâll notice that the front of this crankbait feels much heavier than the rest of the lureâthatâs the internal balancing weight. Itâs a stationary weight that does, in fact, allow the crankbait to continue on its original path shortly after making contact with cover. Iâve used a lot of crankbaits in the past that require a few handle turns in order to get âem back on course, but Iâve really enjoyed how the Aska SR plows through cover without kicking out too far and helicoptering or spinning out.
Small profile pays big dividends
Iâm always a bit skeptical when I hear anglers say, âI couldnât buy a bite on a crankbait today.â And thereâs a reason I say that.
If you look in most folksâ tackle boxes, theyâre using pretty big crankbaits. Theyâll have big, rounded bodies, huge lips and an aggressive wobbling action. Conditions have to line up pretty well for those crankbaits to come into play. Thatâs why I use finesse crankbaits throughout the majority of the year. Theyâll simply get bites when others cannot.
The Jackall Aska SR is an incredibly effective crankbait when conditions arenât exactly ideal for crankbait fishing. Iâve used it to catch bass on calm, bluebird days when most folks would be flipping and pitching heavy cover. Its small stature and fiberglass bill give it a really unique âhybridâ action of sortsâyou could honestly classify it as both a wobble and a shimmy. It does wobble from side-to-side throughout the retrieve, but when compared to most larger crankbaits, itâs a very non-imposing action that seems to fool lethargic bass in fairly cool water temperatures.
Iâve experimented with this by going down a stretch of riprap thatâs historically loaded with bass. First, I fished the entire stretch with a âregularâ squarebill and I caught one fish. The water is still a bit too cold for such an aggressive action. Then I went back down the same stretch and caught 4 bassâand they all had it choked.
Itâs ready to fish
I harp on this subject all of the time, so if youâve read these words before, I apologizeâI prefer crankbaits that donât require a bunch of modifications before I use âem. I consider my fishing time precious, so Iâd rather be casting on the front deck instead of changing hooks and tuning a lure. Simple enough, right?
The Aska SR comes with Owner treble hooks that are very sharp. They donât have much flex to them, which comes in handy when you have a bass bulldogging you at the side of the boat. Iâve been able to enjoy a great landing ratio when using this crankbait straight from the package.
I only own two of these crankbaits, but I have not needed to tune one yet. Theyâve both run excellently without any modifications.
Iâm also a big fan of the oval-shaped line tie. I donât think it adds any action or anything of the sort, but it does make knot tying quicker and much easier. Instead of worrying about the line getting caught in the gap of a round line tie, Iâm able to tie a quick Palomar knot and get on with the day.
Belly hook keeper allows for bigger hooks
The Aska SR has a unique, molded belly hook keeper thatâs quite different from the traditional hook keepers youâll find on most squarebills. Itâs said to reduce hang-ups when coming through heavy cover, but because I havenât seen this lure work through cover on an underwater camera yet, I canât confirm or deny that.
What I can confirm, however, is that this belly hook keeper does allow you to use larger treble hooks if need be. It gives the front hook a smaller range of motion than the more common designs, so you can upsize both hooks a bit without them becoming tangled throughout the retrieve. I thought this was a pretty cool idea because the common knock on small crankbaits is their small treble hooks. This little feature opens up the possibility of using suitable-sized hooks while maintaining a small, finesse profile.
I think this is a slick little crankbait and I plan on using it pretty heavily throughout the prespawn period and during post-frontal conditions in the summer. I can also see it performing quite well throughout the fall months, too. Itâs priced at $15.99 and yes, I agreeâthatâs a bit steep. But itâs hard to get too torn up about the price point when itâs such a productive lure. Some folks will jump all over a $15 crankbait while others will stick to more affordable options, and I totally understand and respect that. Itâs just a matter of what youâre most comfortable with.
If youâre a cranker like me, I consider this crankbait a solid addition to your arsenal. Itâs available at TackleWarehouse.com and other Jackall dealers.