Freshwater Fishing Lures

There are literally hundreds of different lures out there for freshwater fishing, but choosing one doesn't have to take a hundred hours. Some of the most popular freshwater fishing lures are spinners, crankbaits, and jigs. The choice depends on what fish an angler wants and what kind of water is available to fish in. With a good catch in mind from the beginning, choosing freshwater fishing lures gets easier and easier. Remember, the most basic goal of any lure is to simulate, as closely as possible, the live bait that the fish wants. Each of the three lures does this in a different way.

Spinners, like the name suggests, attract fish with a blade that spins when the lure is moved through the water. Fish are drawn in by the motion on the water and the vibrations that the lure puts out. Spinners can catch a wide variety of fish, but are especially good for bagging trout and bass. Bass are natural predators and find a "wounded" spinner twitching through the water hard to resist. Spinners are versatile and work well in shallow and deep water. They have the added bonus of making noises that could provoke big fish.

In a trip to catch bass, pike, or walleye, the best choice of all freshwater fishing lures is probably crankbait. Crankbaits resemble a small fish and are great for catching crappie, walleye, or trout. One of the keys to using crankbait is to adjust the size and color of the bait to the fish you plan to catch. It's usually best to use brightly colored crankbait during the day and more muted colors at night. Vary the size of the lure by species of fish.

Arguably the most useful freshwater fishing lures for catching walleye are jigs. Jigs are hooks weighed down with metal or ceramic sinkers, and they "jig" over the water to attract fish. Jigs are great for walleyes since they tend to stay near the bottom of the water where walleyes will be most likely to find them. Jigs need to be light and small enough for the fish to bite, but heavy enough to stay near the "sweet spot" at the bottom.

Freshwater fishing lures are just as great for catching fish as live bait. Just like a live bait angler has to know what fish want to eat, a lure angler has to think about the lure "arsenal" to catch the right fish. Spinners might be the best all-around lure to start, but having a variety of lures ensures the best performance out there on the lake.