When fishing for smallmouth with topwater baits, the fish create a great boil but miss the bait. I follow up with a senko wacky rigged, can feel them grab it but never seem to take it fully. Wondering what is the best hook for this situation. Using a short shank wide gap with a weed guard at this time. Thanks for your timeEd

Posted on September 2nd, 2017

Hi Ed, sorry to hear you are missing smallmouth bass fishing topwater lures. I have done quite a bit of top water fishing the last two weeks and the bass seldom miss the lure. I would suggest that you try moving the top water a little more continuously (rather than stopping and starting), so that the smallmouth can track the lure and zero-in on it to grab it. I find that some of the best topwater lures for late summer smallmouth have propellers. This includes the old Heddon Tiny Torpedo and especially the Rapala Skitter Prop. I cast these out to likely areas, start reeling right away and continue to reel not too fast, but fast enough for the propeller to work slowly & create a nice “V” on the surface. Smallmouth don’t miss. If you do need to follow-up with a soft-plastic, instead of using a Senko I would really suggest you use a 4″ paddle tail swim-bait like the Lunker City Seimmin Ribseter rigged on a 1/8 or 1/4 oz. jig. If you want to stick to the Senko?Wacky rig you could up-size the wide-gab finesse to a #2 size. The reason I suggest a jig/paddle-tail swim bait is that the faster drop makes the bass “commit” better than they having time to look and get finicky with a slow dropping “wacky-rig”, expecially when they have been in hot pursuit of a top water lure.

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