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Bladed Jigs for Bass

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In the springtime, one of the most effective ways to catch bass is with a bladed jig. This is great tool that will help you put more fish in the boat. I try and target any cover that the bass might be holding in. Including docks, emerging pads, vegetation and wood. This technique really shines when the water temperature is between 40 and 55-degrees. Once it reaches 55, I like to throw different baits, but in that colder water it’s hard to beat!

My personal favorite bladed jig is the V&M Pacemaker Lightning blade. It comes in several sizes and bunch of awesome colors. This jig has a large strong hook that is extra long to help hook fish and to hold your trailer. Trailers are very important when you are talking about bladed jigs. I’ve tried a bunch of different types, with the V&M Thunder Shad Jr. being my go to trailer for the Pacemaker Lightning blade. It is just the right size for the jig and it has a wild swimming action as well.

My rod, reel and line combination is very specific when it comes to throwing a bladed jig. My set up is a Lews Speed Stick 7’6″ MH composite graphite and glass rod. This rod enables me to make longer casts and it helps me to hook and land more fish.

Most guys will fish a bladed jig on the same rod they throw a swim jig or a flipping jig on. A bladed jig is not the same. If you think about it, a bladed jig does not have a weed guard. So you don’t have to set the hook as hard as you can like you do when you are throwing a swim jig or a flipping jig. When I get a bite with the Lighting blade all I do is reel down and pull into the fish. I don’t actually set the hook.

It’s the same concept as when I’m throwing a crankbait.

I want a rod that will help the fish get it! The composite graphite and glass rod will load up and give the fish a chance to suck in the bait. All I have to do is reel into the fish because the rod has already enabled the fish to eat it because of the “give” that it has.

The reel that I use is a Lews Tournament pro 5.4:1 gear ratio. I really like to use the slower ratio because it helps me to fish the bait slower.

Early in the spring, the last thing I want to do is fish slow! I’ve been waiting all winter to fish and I don’t want to fish slowly when I finally get out! If you have patience you can use a 7.1:1 ratio reel but you have slow way down to keep the bait form flying through the water! I don’t have patience so I have to use a slow ratio! This way I can still reel fast but the jig is moving slow through the water. The line that I use is 16-pound Sunline Super FC Sniper fluorocarbon. It has very little stretch and it helps me to rip the jig if I get any weeds on it. So often I will get the jig down in the vegetation and it will come in contact with a clump of weeds, so I rip the jig to free it and right as the jig comes free the fish will eat it. The fluorocarbon really helps to clear the bait of any weeds and also to get the fish out of the cover. I hope these tips will help you catch more fish this spring!

Fishing the V&M Pacemaker Lightning Blade early in the year is a great way to catch some of the biggest fish in the lake!

“Do Whatever It Takes”

Nik Autrey

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"I grew up fishing with my grandpa in Port Angeles, Washington and by the age of 8 I knew making a career in this industry was what I wanted to do with my life. I have 11 years of tournament bass fishing experience and have had the privilege of fishing all over the country. I have fished in tournaments from Washington State to Arkansas to South Carolina. Currently I am the 2012 B.A.S.S Jr. world champion, four-time WA state Jr. champion. I continue to pursue my passion for this sport, and will one day be competing in the Classic. Today I am 21 years old and still residing in WA with my wife and my son, who's support along with God's blessing enable me to continue doing what I love!