• Posted by Nick Honachefsky
  • On February 9, 2018
  • Comments
  •  3

Last week, we talked about the overall gear you want to pack when traveling to a destination, now it’s time for the nuts and bolts of what lures to put in your arsenal.

Anywhere I go fishing, there are always staples in the bag – metals, poppers, plugs, bucktails and soft baits. That spread about covers the whole gamut from top to bottom of the water column and addresses most every situation you can come upon.

Starting from the top, it seems all tropical oriented fish like jacks, cuda and roosterfish have a certain aggression about them, and a splashing popper brings out their anger strike. Carry small to large poppers from a Stillwater Smack it 4-inch to a 6-inch Yo-Zuri Bull Popper to rip across the water’s surface.

Flashy metal lures can trick up most any speedy fish like Spanish mackerel, tuna or barracuda. Small offerings like an Ava 007 or Williamson Gomoku jig can cast like a bullet while larger 1 to 2-ounce Crippled Herring and Shimano Butterfly jigs will target the big fish down deeper and work best when jigging from the deck of a boat.

Plugging is always effective. Carry small plugs to match the profiles of bay anchovies to larger ones for mullet mimics. Pack a Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnow, Rapala Subwalk and Bomber A-Salt in a variety of color patterns with yellow, silver and green solid bets.

Bucktails are the number one lure to pack in the bag as they can be used as both a top and bottom water column bait. Bring an array of ¼ to 3-ounce Spro, Andrus or Magictail bucks with different shapes including bullet, roundhead and teardrop. White, chartreuse and pink are absolute top colors. One more to go – soft baits. Without a doubt, these are the most interchangeable and have the most variety of choices. Firstly, either tip them on a bucktail or lance on straight Kalin leadheads of ¼ to 1-1/2 ounces.

Here’s a laundry list of my usual soft bait suspects – 4 to 5-3/4 inch Fin-S fish in Bubble Gum, Arkansas Shiner and Albino White, 3 to 4-inch Storm or Tsunami shads, Bass Assassins, DOA 3 to 4-inch shrimp in glo-white, gray/white and gold/white, and DOA. C.A.L rubber baits. And the kicker which I can’t stress enough – always, always bring Berkeley Gulp! 3 to 4-inch Swimmin Minnows as they’ll get you into every single species on the planet.

Everything eats Gulp! One to two Plano 3670 boxes can house almost all these lures at once so you can go from spot to spot with all your ammunition and never be left empty handed when needing the right lure for the right situation.

Suggested Gear


Bull Pop

The Yo-Zuri Bull Pop Lures are versatile popper lures that cover a variety of inshore and offshore fishing applications. These lures are ideal for surf casting for striped bass, Jack Crevall, or Roosterfish.


Luhr Jensen

Crippled Herring

A Crippled Herring will arouse fish and provoke strikes when conventional lures or natural bait will not, like, for instance, on a dead calm, bright sunny day. It is a sight-sound lure, which can be cast vertically jigged through ice or open water, mooched or trolled.



X-Rap SubWalk

Cast the X-Rap SubWalk, let it sink and get ready to see the X-Rap attitude of this rebel of the water come to life. Begin twitching your rod tip and watch the X-Rap Subwalk dive into sub-surface hunting mode but don’t relax, because you’re in for one exciting day.




DOA Shrimp have a live shrimp look and swimming action. With their downward facing, vibration legs and consistent level drop rate DOA Shrimp Lures have successfully fooled almost every species of fish that feed on live shrimp.



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