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My Top 5 lures for Ontario Smallies


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While I have love for all species the small mouth bass holds a special place in my heart.  They fight well above their weight class, attack lures with reckless abandon and many times when you catch one others will follow 

It’s also the species I most associate with fishing as a kid   I remember fishing at the bridge in Rosedale on Balsam lake slinging top waters or Mepps Fury spinners as a kid   

My top 5 choices for shield lake smallies is up.  The lures I would feel confident taking for bronze backs should I only be allowed 5   There are lots of other lures and techniques I like or want to try more of but these are my go tos 

https://www.northernjacks.com/post/top-5-lures-for-northern-ontario-smallmouth

Cheers 
Andrew

49509E44-2069-4A76-A827-2FA5C6E0AEF0.jpeg

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So only 5 lures to take to a smallmouth lake you've never been on before

1. Bucktail jig

2. Ned rig/3-4" dark senko 

3. 3" XRap

4. Any #4 Gold spinner

5. my new fav topwater Whopper Plopper (boy that's the worst lure name ever)

runner up only if it's a deeper lake  would be a slab jigging spoon

 

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I do love a Mepps Black Fury and when I used to fish a river a lot I also loved the wee crawfish.   Packing one for my trout trip this summer as I have heard a few people talk about them for brook trout 

some good adds for sure 

Andrew 

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1.) 3 1/2 tube green pumpkin for a crayfish look, white and silver for a bait fish look.

2.) 4 inch Zoom lizard, junebug or watermelon blue.

3.) old school Storm wee wart, chrome - black back - red chin.

4.) hair jig, black or brown, with a pork or rubber trailer.

5.) underspin, like the old school road runners or newer options.

Can't fault what has worked for you.

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1) Berkeley Chigger Craw plastic in a dark colour - black blue fleck

2) Wacky rigged plastic worm

3) Rebel craw

4) Tube jig

5) Plastic grub either on jig head or on spinner

 

Edited by Canuck
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I think I must have started to reply to one of your posts earlier and not finished.  Then when I actually replied to this thread, it left the reference to you in my message.  I think I just fixed it???

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You guys are wild, especially you bill you’re a mad man lol

this is tough because for me it depends on the body of water I’m fishing an absolute ton. You can’t approach the kawarthas necessarily like you can g bay, and even then honey harbour is totally different than pointe au baril.

i won some money throwing a jackhammer in October but I wouldn’t necessarily call it a “smallie bait” even if I do catch a lot of big smallmouth throwing one. Because honestly I never throw a jackhammer on shield lakes, I’d always rather be cranking or throwing a jerkbait if I’m not contending with grass.

1. 3 inch hazedong drop shotted

2. Ned rig with a z man trd tickler

3. nishine erie 115

4. Evergreen cr-8

5. MB giant dog X -  My favourite way to catch em but not something I do a lot of tournament fishing 

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can we all agree, the topwater smallie bite on opener every year is the most fun way to catch these fish. 

Some of my most epic sessions of all time are on opener week are those warm calm evenings throwing a walking bait...my heart skips a beat just thinking about it.

Edited by AKRISONER
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20 hours ago, AKRISONER said:

can we all agree, the topwater smallie bite on opener every year is the most fun way to catch these fish. 

Some of my most epic sessions of all time are on opener week are those warm calm evenings throwing a walking bait...my heart skips a beat just thinking about it.

The Lucky Craft Rick Clunn wakebaits are deadly, it's too bad they've been discontinued for a while.    I've got a tray full of RC1.5's and RC2.5s  Although I'm not tossing topwaters for Gbay smallies on opener..  Spinnerbaits or spybaits depending on water temp.  

That being said, my fav topwater baits are the original Japanese Yellow Magics.     

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4 hours ago, BillM said:

The Lucky Craft Rick Clunn wakebaits are deadly, it's too bad they've been discontinued for a while.    I've got a tray full of RC1.5's and RC2.5s  Although I'm not tossing topwaters for Gbay smallies on opener..  Spinnerbaits or spybaits depending on water temp.  

That being said, my fav topwater baits are the original Japanese Yellow Magics.     

my mind is literally blown. The first bait in my hands every single year at 5am on opener is a walking bait, it immediately tells me how far along into the spawning cycle the fish are. Those first few days they are always seemingly somewhere between 0-10 FOW. Interestingly one year i spent the first half an hour skunked and I was in a panic wonder what the heck was going on, and it was simply that I wasnt casting shallow enough. I literally had to bank my lures off of the rocks aiming at any nook that had reeds protruding up, sure enough everything was still up protecting beds. 

I take the entire week off every year and fish every day and its the same pattern, by the end of opener week the fish transition out off of the edge and start slipping more and more into their summer pattern. Hence why the evening/morning is always my favourite time to fish. The smallies come right back up as the sun goes down. Find a sunken island and throw a topwater right on top of it and the action is seemingly non stop. I recall one evening having 6 fish on 6 consecutive casts to the exact same marker on top of a shoal.

 

UGGGGHHHH just thinking about this is giving me crazy anxiety and a pit in my stomach...were close, but still so far hahaha. Opener morning on G bay is perhaps one of the most special moments in any fishing season. Unlike the kawarthas/tri lakes opener (that i also fish the week prior every single year) the morning is still dead quiet up there. Usually you dont even see a boat for the first couple of hours of fishing.

I cant believe its been 4 years since this photo was taken, but heres a photo at 7am opener morning.

smallies.jpg.6e126d4d19d019eaeab77cb83281eb24.jpg

Edited by AKRISONER
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I love Gbay opener.  Especially if the winds are down and I can go fish my spots that are out in the big water.   I usually start with a spinnerbait (And like you said, right up in the rocks).  If nothing, then I'll toss a 1/2-3/4oz bullet sinker in front of one and fish it a bit deeper but still pretty fast.  If that doesn't work out comes the spybait and I start picking apart those deep sections (8-12ft).    Hasn't failed me yet.  Topwaters and the big open water blue water of Gbay has never been a good combination for me.   Now, if I go in shore a bit where the water is off colour, that's a completely different game.  

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16 hours ago, BillM said:

I love Gbay opener.  Especially if the winds are down and I can go fish my spots that are out in the big water.   I usually start with a spinnerbait (And like you said, right up in the rocks).  If nothing, then I'll toss a 1/2-3/4oz bullet sinker in front of one and fish it a bit deeper but still pretty fast.  If that doesn't work out comes the spybait and I start picking apart those deep sections (8-12ft).    Hasn't failed me yet.  Topwaters and the big open water blue water of Gbay has never been a good combination for me.   Now, if I go in shore a bit where the water is off colour, that's a completely different game.  

funny bill, im spilling my beans here a bit, but to be fair I havent spent enough time in the near area yet, nor have I bothered to explore the outer reaches into the bay yet as you can imagine I had more than enough water to cover closer to home last year. I still have areas that I havent really picked apart yet, a new bigger boat though will give me some more confidence to go through those big water sections and explore.

My experience fishing the bay now for a decade though has taught me one thing is that there is a sweet spot, not too far out, but not too far in is where the biggest fish are. Not that there are not big fish to be caught thats for sure. But if im out trying to catch 5 4lbers, at least in my experience there is a sweet spot. This speaks larger volumes to the concept of finding "transitional areas". its really been something ive narrowed down while tournament fishing too, not surprisingly big fish like options, and the way G bay is naturally structured is that its two different lakes, one inside and one outside...to me the fish think why not have both.

 

Edited by AKRISONER
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Jackal Squad Minnow jerkbait

Eco Gear  SX48 Shad crank

Storm Sub Wart, subsurface crank

Norries Worming Crank Shot diving crankbait

Mepps Black fury #3 with the baitkeeper hook and a black twister tail

 

There's a ton of others too. Many have been mentioned above and special mention ANYTHING from Keitech

 

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7 hours ago, Snidley said:

Jackal Squad Minnow jerkbait

Eco Gear  SX48 Shad crank

Storm Sub Wart, subsurface crank

Norries Worming Crank Shot diving crankbait

Mepps Black fury #3 with the baitkeeper hook and a black twister tail

 

There's a ton of others too. Many have been mentioned above and special mention ANYTHING from Keitech

 

Jesus where are you even getting norries gear from. That’s hard to come by

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I get them directly from Japan. Even there the Worming Crank Shots are hard to find. There is a guy who has some on Ebay. He lives in Toronto but he forces you to buy through EBay itself. He also has Eco Gears. Dave Chong, on here, has some Norries but not Worming Crank Shots. I saw them at his booth at the Hamilton Swap Meet last week. A couple of big cranks and some small jerk baits. He will be at the Toronto Swap meet I'm sure.  I cannot vouch for those particular lures but i will say everything I've used from Norries has worked at least somewhat They are expensive but today everything is pricey. I live down the street from Bass Pro in St Catherines and there, a J13 is $18 and a Williams Whitefish is $19. Most lures are at least $10, most are more. At the swap meet spoons were going for a max of $5 and lots for a dollar or two. I bought lots of mint Japanese hardbaits for between $5 and max $7.50. Good ones that work for sure too. My buddy bagged a 9' St Croix Avid rod that was near new for $150. St Croix does not even make them anymore so it was a great deal. It was my buddies first time at the swap meet and he also won a brand new Shimano rod worth about $150. He's now a swap meet enthusiast.

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Wow. Can’t believe nobody’s mentioned a few classics.

Spickle’s original Nasty Floater

PoGo StiX in a jalapeño tiger pattern, deadly in low light conditions

Chumbawamba Tubthumpers-1/2 ounce

Timmie’s Cruel-lures ( just about anything’s great from these guys)

Edited by Weeds
Thought of a better one
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i literally googled to make sure I wasnt crazy lmaoooo

 

Snidley if i was in town I was 100% going to go to the tackle swap, alas, i am up north making a last ditch attempt to catch 1 last lake trout through the ice.

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