Walking topwater

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No bass angler should be without a walking topwater while fishing this time of year. There are lots of crazy colors on the market these days, but my suggestions are actually pretty simple: Go with a bone (white) color in overcast conditions and switch to a chrome or silver color when the sun comes out. These two colors will get the paint chewed off if you can find baitfish activity near the surface. 

Walking topwater lures are my No. 1 option whenever I see any sort of flickering or schooling action on the surface. This activity is indicative of shad, which of course, are the featured dish of the menu throughout the fall months. Make a long cast past the activity and work the lure side-to-side through the heart of the action. When you catch one, be sure to quickly release it so you can get back to fishing; it’s not at all uncommon to catch several fish in a row when you run into this scenario. A quick release and follow-up cast will help keep the school fired. 

You can also use them to cover water quickly. While I prefer a buzzbait because of the speed at which I can fish it, walking topwaters are a strong secondary choice if you’re getting a lot of short strikes on a buzzbait. These lures are a bit more subtle and slower than buzzbaits, which can result in more hookups if you’re faced with finicky fish or a surprise weather front. 

Honestly, you can start at the mouth of a small creek or pocket and expect bites just about anywhere with these lures. But the high-percentage spots include primary and secondary points, shallow docks with brush and shallow flats in the back-end of pockets.