As I’ve learned more about the feeding patterns of stripers and how they behave, the more I’ve understood which lures are best during the different seasons of the year – and why it is essential to have so many types of lures.
The seasonal habits of the striper and how they relate to underwater structure whether shallow, deep or suspended in the water column are important reasons to carry an arsenal of lures. Many fishermen have joked with their buddy when a particular lure is producing and you hear “I have one more but it will cost you a hundred dollars!”
Essential Lure Types
For striper fishing on Lake Texoma there are four main types of striper fishing lures that are productive: fishing jigs, slabs, spinners, and topwater lures.
Fishing jigs have lead heads weighing ½ to 1-ounce. Various shapes are used to allow a refined presentation. Some days stripers are feeding and other days you must trigger a strike.
The best technique is in the retrieve of the jig. When reeling with a steady retrieve isn’t working, use a erratic retrieve. Try an aggressive rip, rip and pause. Watch your professional fishermen and you can learn a valuable lesson.
Fishing jigs with a soft plastic 4-inch sassy shad, fluke tail or curly tail grub can be used year-round. During the cold season, 1-ounce Road Runner buck tail jigs work best for catching big fish. The best colors for Lake Texoma striper fishing are white and chartreuse.
Slabs are a painted lead spoon weighing from ¾ to 2 ½ ounces. You can cast slabs but your best technique is to fish them vertically. The stripers will suspend in the water and a slab allows you aggressively work the entire water column.
Striper are schooling fish and large groups of fish will react to other fish behavior.
The two best ways to fish a slab is to bump the bottom on flats and ledges, or, letting it fall and rip them up in deep water. When you are fishing a slab keep a tight line a stay in contact with the lure.
Slabs are a good simulation of a crippled bait fish and will produce strikes both on the fall and when reeling them up. The best colors for Texoma striper fishing are chrome, white, and chartreuse.
Spinners have blades that revolve around a wire shaft and a treble hook at the base. Most spinners have skirts made from buck tail or rubber materials. Though not as popular as they once were, spinners are a long time proven lure for all species of fish.They are fantastic for striped bass because the blade creates vibration and will produce a flash in the water enticing a strike.
Nothing is more exciting than a hungry striper exploding on a top-water fishing lure. Top-water lures cause a striper to think bait is swimming across the surface, a motion that enrages the fish to vicious bites and extreme fights.
One day an excited fisherman asked me, “Why would you fish with any lure than a top-water?” Topwater lures are made of plastic or wood that floats and they are flicked or “popped” across the water’s surface.
Another technique is an erratic retrieve called “walking the dog”, a proven and exciting type of fishing in the Spring, Summer and Fall seasons.
In the Spring the stripers follow the food forage into shallow and warmer water. Large schools of stripers during the Summer will surround bait and push them to the surface and produce fantastic sight fishing. On a calm morning you can see surfacing fish up to a mile away.
Top-water lures are my favorite artificial lure type for Texoma striper fishing – Pencil Poppers and Magnum Zara Spooks in blue, chrome, and shad colors work best.
Four Essential Lures
Slabs, Jigs, Spinners and Top-water – all four of these lure types are essential for your tackle box.
You should carry a variety of colors and sizes that allow you to fish all parts of the water column. These lures are necessary to effectively fish in a myriad of conditions and different times of year.
Nearly 200 million lures will be sold this year… and they all have to be stored somewhere, thankfully, there’s Plano Molding Fishing Products. Plano’s advanced tackle systems are Striper Express’ “go-to” tackle boxes. We all need a tackle box or 2 or 3 that will help protect, store and utilize our lure investment.
And remember that striper fishing lures are like women and toys
…the man who dies with the most, wins!
Take a look at this short video and you too can be a proud “lure-a-holic”.