Summer, the perfect time to throw top waters, crank baits and unweighted plastics for bream around structure. Fish are generally a little smaller but the numbers of active fish are higher and they are very active.
The use of crank baits has evolved for me over several years, starting out with an Ecogear SX40, through to trying a Jackall Chubby, using the Atomic Crank and several different stops inbetween.
I erred away from the SX40 because of it’s limited ability to cast long distances, the Chubby due to the price point, fished the Atomic Crank for a fair while, reverted back to the Jackall Chubby and am now at a cross road as to what I will use next.
The Jackall Chubby is a great crank bait, casts a long way, built well and swims straight but that last point seems to be a problem in some situations, they swim too straight. The Jackall Chubby is almost too good and is rock solid, straight out of the packet.
Why is this a problem? Sometimes it seems it is better if the lure seeks and searches, changes directions rapidly and acts more like a bait fish.
When fishing flats and edges, changing to an erratic bait will allow for more ground to be covered as it searches from side to side. This might sound all and good but there are two problems, the first is obvious, sometimes it doesn’t work as you’ll end up guessing when to use the “straight and narrow” bait versus the “searching and seeking” bait but the second seems to be finding baits that have these characteristics for when the time comes.
One reason why I think the searching bait may not be the right tactic is the same reason that pauses or jerks when using crank baits isn’t always the best option. The finicky bream tend to have an aversion to the bait changing direction, stopping, speeding up or slowing down. They seem to just want it all the same.
When fishing parallel to structure, whether that be edges, boat hulls, pontoons or docks, having a bait swimming away from the structure is less likely to work than staying adjacent or even bumping into the structure. Using an erratic bait can lead to your hook points being too far away from the fish.