Bass Fishing Lures

Wondering which bass lures to use when fishing for largemouth bass in freshwater? If you are just learning how to use fishing lures when targeting bass, it may seem as if there are so many different lures to choose from. However, selecting the best lures for bass is easier than you think.

Bass Lures Types

Some fishing lures for bass work best in deep water while others work best in shallow water. There are also certain bass lures that are more effective in clear water and others that are better at attracting bass in cloudy or stained water. To keep it simple, just remember the five main types of bass fishing lures that you can choose from.


A crankbait can be one the best bass lures to use when you want to cover a lot of water in a rather short amount of time. These freshwater fishing lures work best when used around wood or rocks in waterways that are between 10 to 20 feet deep. They will not work well in areas with grass or weeds. When selecting the best type of crankbait to use, you will want to consider a few key facts.

  • Crankbaits with longer bills will run deeper in the water column than those with smaller bills.
  • Crankbaits with rattles tend to be effective in cloudy water when bass need to rely more on their inner ears and lateral line to locate prey.
  • Brightly colored crankbaits can also be easier for bass to spot in cloudy or muddy water.


A jig is the bass lure to use when you plan to fish for bass in an area of heavy cover. In other words, if you see a lot of grass, surface vegetation, trees or stumps, a jig should work well. One of the other advantages of using a jig is that you can fish them in either shallow or deep water. Just remember that you will need a heavy action rod and braided fishing line to properly fish these types of bass lures. A heavier rod will make it easier to cast heavier jigs and can help you pull a largemouth bass through thick matted grass.

Soft Plastic Lures

Soft plastic lures, like worms or creature baits, are good lures to always keep in your tackle box because they work well in a variety of water conditions. You can use them in clear or muddy water and in spots with or without cover. There are many different soft plastic lure shapes and colors available, but a simple soft plastic worm rigged Texas-style using a bullet weight is one of the best bass fishing set ups to start with if you are new to using soft plastic lures.


Spinnerbaits are reaction lures that come in a variety of colors and blade shapes. These types of bass lures tend to work best in shallow water on windy and cloudy days. On clear and calm days, when the fish may spook more easily, you are likely to have better luck fishing spinnerbaits in deeper areas. The most popular spinnerbait blade shapes are willow leaf, Colorado, and Indiana.

  • Willow leaf blades are often most effective in clear, deep water when the fish are primarily using sight to find prey.
  • Colorado blades create the most vibration, so use spinnerbaits with Colorado blades in muddy or cloudy water when bass rely more on their lateral line.
  • Indiana blades are more oblong than Colorado blades, but not as narrow as willow leaf blades. Spinnerbaits with Indiana blades are good in-between or multi-purpose lures.

Spinnerbaits can also be useful search tools when trying to find fish in a large area of water. You can easily cast spinnerbaits across large flats or bump them against stumps or rock piles to see which technique will entice the bass into biting.

Topwater Lures

Perhaps one of the most exciting types of bass lures you can use is a topwater lure because of the visible strike that occurs when a fish hits your lure on the surface. Because these lures are worked across the surface using a twitching or jerking motion, some anglers also refer to them as "twitch baits."

Topwater lures can come in the form of poppers, plugs, or frogs and tend to work best during periods of low light when water conditions are calm. Look for structure such as shoreline banks, docks, or brush piles and work your topwater lure in these types of areas for your best chance at a bite. Learn how to topwater fish in this section.

Learn more about the different types of freshwater lures available in our next section.