Early Spring Fishing Lures

Uploaded by kdwpinfo on 24.03.2010

March weather is always fickle, but even so, it’s time to start fishing. Water temperatures
above 50 degrees put fish on the move, and early season angling is a great way to shake
off the winter blues. Last year, about 285,000 anglers fished in Kansas, and it’s a good
bet most of them are itching to start fishing this spring.
If you’re new to fishing or just want to restock you tackle box, shopping for lures
can be overwhelming. Thousands of products line aisles and fill catalog pages. Many of
these are best suited to summer fishing. If you want an early start, here are some reliable
artificial baits to have on hand.
Remember, fish are sluggish in cool waters, and they’re not quick to chase a meal. Slow
is the word. For crappies, jigs suspended from a bobber and fished over structure help
hold the lure in place as wave action provides tantalizing motion. When the cork bounces
or goes under, set the hook.
Many anglers hit March lakes and ponds in search of lunker black bass. In-line spinners,
such as a Mepps, provide flash and often trigger strikes. A slow and steady retrieve works
best. These lures are deadly and easy to use.
Another favorite is the jig-and-pig or similar lure, fished in a slow, bouncing motion along
bottom structure. These lures mimic a crawdad. Hook a pork trailer on a quarter- to half-ounce
bass jig. Use a heavier jig in deep water or thick vegetation. Most strikes occur as
the jig is falling, so set the hook when you feel a twitch.
Crankbaits are especially good early in the year. Suspending stickbaits like a Rogue catch
a variety of gamefish from bass and stripers to walleyes. Twitched underwater, these baits
mimic an injured minnow. Strikes usually come when the lure is paused. Vary the speed of
retrieve as well as the length of the pause until the fish tell you what they want.
Anglers often fish at dusk along Kansas dams where spawning walleye congregate. Here, a
favorite lure is the floating, minnow-type crankbait like a Rapala or Rebel. Other shallow-running
crankbaits like Hot-n-Tots are also productive. Reel steadily to keep the lure just underwater.
Curly-tailed twister grubs are also good for this type of fishing.
Don’t miss Kansas’ early spring fishing. Buy a fishing license and check department
website fishing reports for the best places. Gear up with these early season lures, and
you’re on your way to Kansas outdoors adventure.
I’m Mike Blair for Kansas Wildlife and Parks.