Is This the Best Sight-Fishing Soft Plastic Craw for Bass?

If you're into sight-fishing for bass, having the right bait that aggravates fish enough to bite is critical. The Psycho Dad might be the best one to try.

Is This the Best Sight-Fishing Soft Plastic Craw for Bass?

Sight-fishing for bass requires a combination of a good lure, hook, line and vision to put a fish in the boat.

Trying to explain the best sight-fishing tips for bass is like trying to tell someone how to jump on a pogo stick. You can give a few pointers, but in the end it's a big learning curve to figure out things to be successful.

Unlike hopping around on the pogo stick, sight-fishing for bass can change from one fish to the next. Finding a 5-pounder locked on the bed ignoring your bait can be frustrating. The next 5-pounder might inhale the bait before it hits bottom. And the next one might casually swim away to skulk out of sight before returning after you're gone.

It can be maddening, exciting and heartbreaking all at once. Veteran pro anglers can look at a fish on a bed and tell, almost instantly, whether to stick around or move on just by the fish's reaction. I've been fortunate to fish with some great sight-fishing pros including Shaw Grigsby, Kelly Jordon, Alton Jones, Zell Rowland and one of north Florida's best, Tim Mann of Jacksonville.

One thing they seem to have in common is using a diminuitive bait with the biggest hook possible. That might sound paradoxical but it's true. If you can get a 4/0 hook situated with a 3-inch craw or tube and a bass inhales it, the hook's in its mouth. Then it's up to you to sweep and set.

But here we are going back to the original deal of trying to explain it. I really can't. You have to figure out for yourself what works best. You have to figure out which angle of attack is best, and how to present the lure and bring it to the bed. You have to figure out the sweet spot that makes the fish bite. If it doesn't work, you have to decide whether to stay or maybe switch tactics.

Your best lure might be a wacky-rigged school bus yellow Zoom trick worm or a 1/4-ounce black-blue jig and grub, or a 3-inch tube and smaller hook. Whatever works best and gives you confidence, go for it. Just know should be ready to adjust and try different things when a sullen bass has lockjaw. Your school bus yellow trick worm may not make her budge, but a pumpkin-with-red-flake Yum Vibra King tube may do the job.

I've messed with bass for 25 years and still learn something every time I go. Some are easy. Some are difficult. Largemouth are moody. Smallmouth are like pit bulls. Spotted bass are like pit bulls on crack. All are fun.

One thing I love is a bait that stands up instead of laying over like a limp rag. Trick worms are great for this. The defunct Kicker Fish Bait Company made a great worm called the Hightail Holeshot with an air bubble in the tail. The problem with big worms and lizards, though, is a bass can nip the end to move it away but not get the hook. Thus, the need for a compact bait that can hold a good-sized hook.

That's why I like the Yamamoto Psycho Dad crawfish, which has hollow claw tips. When Texas rigged, it hits the bottom tail down and the claws rise. Add a 4/0 hook and to me, it's a deadly combo.

Can a bass nip the claw but not get the hook? Yes, but I've seen it happen with 3-inch tubes. They're pretty good at it, but I think your chances of making one mad are better with something small taunting them. It's like a little bluegill or craw yammering at them. Use a good hook, good line and stay with it. The highs will be more fun than the lows.

Check out the video below with legendary California stick Bub Tosh explaining the Psycho Dad and how he rigs it for pitching, punching and sight-fishing.

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