Texas Parks & Wildlife Magazine   



Nice Catch

Blades and

Fish scatter in fall’s cooler water.
The right lures can find them.

Cooler water and air temperatures make fall a great time for fishing in Texas. Not only is it more comfortable for the angler, fish become more active.

Active fish scatter, so anglers must move around to find them. The best-suited lures for searching are baits with various blades: spinner baits, bladed jigs and umbrella rigs. Spinner baits come with several options for blade designs.


COLORADO BLADES have more cupping around the edge, which provides more “lift.” They can be retrieved more slowly; the extra cupping increases the “thump” (vibration). These blades work well in colder, off-colored water. 


WILLOW BLADES produce a lot of “flash,” are easy to retrieve and can be fished quickly. The design mimics shad and is highly effective in the fall, able to cover a lot of areas in short order.


Many SPINNER BAITS have two blades, but single-bladed baits can be used as well. Combinations with small Colorado and normal-sized willow blades give both thump and flash. Spinner baits can be fished around woody cover without too much trouble.


Popular BLADED JIGS have a jig shape with a unique blade design near the line tie. Chatter Baits, the patented version, have an effective tight wobble and vibration. They can be fished around grass, but don’t try them around wood — when they bump it, they roll to the side and hang up. Bladed jigs are more popular than spinner baits because they’re so effective, but you need both.


UMBRELLA RIGS (such as the patented Alabama Rig or A-Rig) have multiple wires spreading off a central base and line tie. The business ends have rigged hooks with small swimbaits (up to five hooks are legal in Texas). The rig looks like a school of bait to a predator fish; sometimes you’ll catch multiple fish on one cast. This great search tool is highly successful in colder water. Umbrella rigs are prohibited in almost every major bass tournament circuit.

Colors and Sizes

The most widely used spinner bait color is white/chartreuse. White only, chartreuse and white/chartreuse/blue are also common colors. In bladed jigs, green pumpkins are common, followed by the same colors as spinner baits.

Popular spinner baits and blades are usually a half-ounce.

For umbrella rigs, 3- to 5-inch swimbaits on one-eighth ounce to one-half ounce jig heads are common. 

All  Courtesy Manufacturers

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