The crankbait lure you use will depend on the food the bass eats at any given time, depending on how shallow or deep it swims. As a fisherman, you can determine the crankbait size based on the seasons.
The bass swims shallow during spring and fall. At such times, it eats crawfish and baitfish. Most of the baitfish are young, between one and three inches in length. Similarly, the crawfish will be small as they are coming out of hibernation. As such, you need to pick bait that is between one and three inches. However, in cases of heavy spring rains and when the water gets muddy, you might need a relatively large lure for enhanced visibility.
In summer, the bass swims in deep waters. It focuses on larger baitfish but can also eat bluegill and crappie, which are also large. If you fish at night, you need to increase the size of the bait to disturb water more and enhance visibility.
In fall, the bass swims shallow as it hunts for the baitfish in migration. At this point, the baitfish have grown and are between 3 and 5 inches. If it rains heavily in fall, even the larger crankbaits will not be effective, but you can still give it a shot.
As the cold season nears, the bass moves deep near the bottom. Here, you need large bait that moves to the depths to reach the bass. Deep diving crankbaits will work perfectly in deep waters. If you fish in shallow cold waters, use smaller baits and lower them slowly into the water.
Does the Mouth Size of the Bass Matter?
Unless you are targeting young bass, you shouldn’t change the size of the lure based on the mouth size. Bass are aggressive and will tear down anything you send their way. As long as the bait looks tasty, they will open their mouths wide enough. The size will only matter after they have taken the bait and now needs to spit it.
Picking a Crankbait Lure Color
The size of the crankbait might not matter much if the color is off. Although color is not the first factor that you should consider, it is still an important aspect when choosing a lure. If you throw two baits in the waters, the bass will swim towards one and ignore the other. It is easy to choose the color:
- In winter, the bass eats shad and you can target them by using black and silver lures.
- When the bass moves to shallow waters pre-spawn, it eats crayfish. Your bait, therefore, needs to be brown, green, red, black, and orange. You can combine any two or more of these colors. Post spawn, the bass will fall for pearl white, blue, and citrus green baits.
- In dark waters, opt for colors that are bright for added visibility.
- In clear waters, choose the natural colors of the fish the bass eats.
When you get the color and the size right, you will get the bass you want.