• Posted by Nick Honachefsky
  • On May 31, 2017
  • Comments
  •  2

Black sea bass are moving back to the inshore grounds and summertime sessions can end with a loaded cooler on a day trip. Inshore ridges, ledges and structure piles will all harbor sea bass through the sunny summer days, and a few tricks can up your catch quota.

Bells and whistles actually work for sea bass, so long as you use the right ones. I’ve found that a few specific adornments seem to spark the sea bass to bite better: Orange, red or purple beads threaded on above the hook are fine attractants as are red 3-inch Mister Twister curly tail grubs, 4-inch Gulp! Swimmin’ Mullets, and white or purple B2 squids. Jigging is also a hot way to get a sea biscuit to bite. Bounce the bottom with slender metal jigs such as Ava size 27 to 67 with green, red and black tails, OB Fish company Hammered Diamond jig or Williamson Benthos jigs.

A subtle jigging approach is utilized, and instead of a usual swing for the fences type of approach like in bluefishing, you want to keep that iron right on the bottom and simply tap-tap-tap the rod up in short 8 to 12-inch strokes so that the appearance is of a fluttering baitfish just inches off the ocean floor. Bucktails can also be excellent sea bass attractors. A proper offering is a 1-ounce Spro bucktail tipped with a 4-inch bait strip of squid. When the small bucktail sinks, jig in short strokes along wreckside structure or glacial rockpiles where scores of knuckleheads are hanging out. This method gives you a primo option to target bass hanging higher on the structure while presenting a much more flowing natural approach with the lighter weighted bucktail.

Sea bass are aggressive pack eaters and when you hook one fish, chances are you’re going to hook another next to it. A slight trick to up your catch count is to take advantage of their pack mentality. On a Hi-Lo rig with 40-pound TrikFish leader and two dropper loops fixed with size 3/0 Octopus Gamakatsu hooks, bait up with a slice of fresh clam or squid strip. Once you hook into one fish, set the hook but then leave the rig down there while the one fish is hooked up. The commotion will attract the other sea bass around to come investigate and that’s when you will feel the second and third hits almost immediately. This way instead of reeling in one at a time, you can be pulling double or tripleheaders on each drop.

Suggested Gear


Gulp! Saltwater Swimming Mullet

Berkley Gulp! Saltwater baits are made from natural ingredients that release 400 times more scent than plastic baits. Formulated especially for ocean gamefish, Berkley Gulp! Saltwater is so potent it can actually OUTFISH live bait.


Ob Fish Company

Hammered Finish Diamond Jig Lures

Rugged, anti-corrosive and enticing. This hammered finish, diamond jig lure will be sure to attract big game fish with it’s metallic appeal. It simulates an unsuspecting smooth-scaled prey.


Ob Fish Company

Diamond Back Smooth Jig Lures

Rugged, anti-corrosive and enticing. This smooth finish, diamond jig lure will be sure to attract big game fish with it’s metallic appeal. It simulates an unsuspecting smooth-scaled prey.



Fluorocarbon Leader

The company has been selling line crafted from the best European technology since 1984, and first made a name for itself with its camouflage line, as well as its leader wrist spools — so popular among saltwater guides and anglers.



Leave Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *