I thought that it would be valuable to share with the readers of this blog what lures I use for the various kinds of fishing I do. With the intention that I can in return learn about different opinions and recommendations based on what I use.
To start it off I’ve chosen to focus on my Bass lure selection and the lures that most consistently come out fishing with me throughout the season.
The lure market can be somewhat daunting to anglers with multiple kinds of lures in an array of colours all promising to catch you that fish of a lifetime. Out of the multiple kinds of lures on the market my most consistent catching and preferred lures are:
- Shallow Diving Lures
- Weightless Soft Plastic Lures
- Surface Lures
- Weighted Paddle tail soft plastics
With the diverse topographies that we fish when targeting Bass, from rugged shallow rocky ground to clean sandy estuaries it is important that you have lures to cover a variety of marks and fishing situations. While day and night time fishing can even call for a complete change of lures.
In order to carry these lures in the most effective way and be able to ensure the longevity of my treasured lures, I opt to carry them in the awesome Snowbee 10 slot double-sided lure boxes. Choosing to organise them in a manner so that shallow divers are together on one side of the box along with a few soft plastics rigged on jig heads if there is a spare slot. While on the other side I will have my surface lures and again if space allows a few weightless soft plastics thrown in. If I’m on an exploratory mission or fishing a few marks in a day I’ll take two boxes styled in a similar manner, all of which fits great in the not cheap but most perfect bum bag from Patagonia.
Shallow Diving Lures
My choice of shallow diving lures tends to be small, I always feel its better to have a smaller quality collection of lures that you trust to catch you fish, rather than a broad selection you can’t give enough water time to and get distracted with. A collection like this can only come with experimenting and time out fishing, but the following is what I trust to work for me;
IMA KOMOMO – SF-125
This lure is one that has consistently caught me fish since I started fishing with it around the South Wales coastline in 2015. Where it has really shown its true colours for me though has been in Ireland where it excels at catching Bass over shallow rough ground, at both daytime and night time! It swims with a nice tight rolling action that I really like from my shallow divers and with your rod tip high it swims beautifully shallow, perfect for those shallow marks. Another big bonus for me is that the lure is extremely buoyant and I find that this is very handy in shallow divers should they get snagged often a little jerk as a wave passes over the lure and it is free! I’m a fan of this lure in all its colours, in particular, the Cotton Candy and Ayu colourways although I’m particularly keen to give the ghost anchovy pattern a swim and see how it may do for me, there is a huge selection of colours available, check them out here! Weighing in at 16g the lure casts as you would expect for a high-end Japanese lure although I do think there’s a knack to hitting it right on the cast to get the best out of it.
DAWIA SHORELINE SHINER – Z120F SSR
This is a lure that I really adore and have so much confidence in over the shallow rough ground I love to fish, especially with a small wave running where it cuts into the turbulent water really well. Again I am not overly fussy on the colours of this lure but tend to favour the natural colours such as Laser Sardine and Ayu. The lure casts superb and is one of my favourite casting shallow divers, especially into a headwind and at 19g with Daiwa’s great sliding weight casting system this would be expected. Sadly this lure has become somewhat of a rarity amongst UK tackle dealers and it would be great to see more of the Daiwa Japanese Saltwater Bass Lures available in the UK, although some pioneering retailers do source shipments across from Japan it would be great to see more plentiful supplies available, to find one of the few places stocking them click here.
IMA SASUKE 120
A slightly deeper diving lure that I tend to turn to over deeper water and in larger waves were the increased tables of water give more depth to normally shallow ground. Weighing in at 17g with a sliding weight system casts really well. One thing I do really love about the lure is that it does a very good job of holding and working in larger swells. For this reason, I also like it for night time fishing when conditions get rougher and you want something that isn’t getting thrown around so much in the swell, especially with the slower retrieves used. The lip design of the lure reminds me a lot of the American Bottle Lip plugs used by striped bass anglers and is, in my opinion, what allows the lure to handle in rougher water with a consistent action. I tend to use the cotton candy colour along with the chartreuse-white and orange pattern of the Sasuke 120 (see here) but have heard good things about the Sand Bora and Sardine patterns as well as the 140 size and these may accidentally get added to my basket next time I’m tackle hunting online.
DAIWA SHORELINE SHINER – R50+ SSR
This lure is one that is a consistent feature in my lure box throughout the whole season. It is one of my most consistent and favourite nighttime lures that I have a huge amount of confidence in. The lure is not the furthest casting shallow diver I’ve used by any means (weighing 15g) but seems to cover the distances I require more often than not and serves me well. One thing worth noting I and other anglers I fish with have noticed is that the hooks these come with can be a little on the weak side, having been left snapped and bent out after fish and I have since upgraded the hooks on a few of mine to stronger VMC alternatives. It was a shame to see that this lure was discontinued by Daiwa but that there is still an eBay supplier with stock available that seems to have purchased a limited final run of this lure (leave a few for me).
Finally, one thing I will be testing with my lures and trying to do to all my shallow divers this year is to take off the middle treble off my where possible, in order to minimise risk to both myself and the fish. This is something I am going to do a little pool testing with just for my own confidence. I am also yet to look at the option of single hooks like these here, I know this is something worth considering (where the action is not hindered) and something some anglers are doing and I am keen to learn more about.
There you have it, my top shallow diving lures. CHECK BACK NEXT WEEK FOR PART 2 of 3 – WEIGHTLESS SOFT PLASTICS…