When To Use Topwater Lures For Bass


Topwater lures are one of the best ways of catching bass. As exciting as the topwater lures might be, they are generally an underutilized technique. This could be probably because most anglers think that they are only useful in low-light conditions or they may end up losing a lot of fish.

Contrary to what most people, who are just getting started with fishing, think, as long as you know how to use topwater lures, you should find the lures extremely effective. In this article, we will focus on showing you when to use topwater lures for bass.

Types of Topwater Lures

Most topwater lures for largemouth bass will elicit an exciting strike for the bass fish. In most instances, they will produce when other lures fail to produce. This is probably because they force even the uninterested bass to attack while thinking that it has just found a vulnerable or easy prey.

Some of the topwater lures you can use with your bass fishing rod include:

  • Hard-plastic or wooden plugs – These float on the surface. Examples include wobblers, walkers, and poppers.
  • Soft-plastic lures – These do float on the surface. A good example is a frog.
  • Lures featuring a revolving blade – These do not necessarily float. They are supposed to be fished exclusively along the water surface on a steady retrieve.

The Ideal Time for Fishing with Topwater Lures


Professional fishermen, who are already familiar with how to hold and handle a bass, prefer to use the topwater lures during the summer season. However, the lures have proven to be incredibly useful during the fall and the spring.

The topwater lures are extremely productive when the bass fish are aggressive. Since the bass are less aggressive when the water is cold, they may not be very useful during the winter.  Below, we have the prime circumstances and conditions when topwater lures become ideal lures for smallmouth bass and largemouth bass.

Early Morning

If you are familiar with how to use topwater lures, you should be able to catch some bass fish in the morning. If you happen to ask fishing experts when to use topwater lures for bass, the answer you will probably get is when the light is low.

In the morning, the light is generally low. This makes it an ideal time for you to work your topwater lure around stumps, logs, brush, bushes, and rocks in the water. You should find success fishing around the shallows considering that bass fish usually moves to the shallow cover in the morning to feed.

Dusk/Late Afternoon

Similar to the early mornings, the bass fish, in some instances, moves to the shallows at dusk to feed. This means that you may be able to get some bass fish if you navigate the shallow cover with your best fish finder and favorite topwater lure.

At Night

If you do enjoy night fishing, you can use the topwater lures throughout the night, especially in the summer, when the water temperature is the highest. You should select a topwater lure that allows you to retrieve it in a steady action. This will improve the chances of the bass fish honing in on the lure.

One of the best night topwater lures for bass fish is a black jitterbug. The jitterbug features a “plop” sound. This makes it an easy target for the fish. If you fish a buzzbait as slowly as possible, it can also be an ideal night fishing topwater lure.

On Cloudy Days

On cloudy days, bass fish usually moves to the shallows to feed, similar to how they do at dusk and early in the morning. This means that wearing your best fishing hat and heading to your favorite fishing spot with your topwater lures on cloudy days, may be a good idea.

When the Shad Spawn

Throwing your topwater lure on the water when the gizzard and threadfin shad spawn on the hard surfaces can help you catch some bass fish. You should throw your popper or buzz bait on the bank and then proceed to work it towards the deep waters.

In some instances, for the bass to bite, you may have to hit the bank. This phenomenon works much better in huge southern impoundments. However, it should work well in all areas where you find the shad spawning.

During the Mayfly Hatch

If you are still wondering when to use topwater lures for bass, watch out for the season when the mayflies hatch around your favorite fishing spot and the bluegills come to feed on the bugs. The bass fish will eventually follow, to feed on the bluegills.

When learning how to use topwater lures so that you can fish when the mayfly hatch, you should focus more on the popper. The popper imitates the sound made by the bluegill when it sucks bugs.

You should focus on working the popper from slow to fast movements until you catch the bass you are after. In some cases, allowing the plug to sit still after making the plop sound makes it look like an easy meal. In some instances, the popper moving fast and making the constant plop sound makes the bass think that they are trying to take a meal from another slower bass.

When the Bass Are Schooling

A topwater lure will resemble a bass chasing a baitfish on top when the bass is schooling in open water. The bass fish will try to take the meal from each other. This increases your chances of using your best spinning reel to reel in more than one bass fish using a single topwater lure.

Globo Surf Overview

If you do like going after bass fish, learning how to use topwater lures may be a good idea for you. In this article, we have shown you when to use topwater lures for bass. As you have probably noticed, the topwater lures are useful in more conditions and circumstances than most bass fishermen believe.

The key thing to keep in mind is that the lures will be most useful when the bass fish are most aggressive. The bass fish are aggressive when the water temperature is high. Hence, using the topwater lures during the winter season may not be a good idea.

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Globo Surf
My name is David Hamburg. I am an avid water sports fan who enjoys paddle boarding, surfing, scuba diving, and kite surfing. Anything with a board or chance I can get in the water I love! I am such a big fan I decided to start this website to review all my favorite products and some others. Hope you enjoy!