As summer wraps up, football season begins, and North Georgia lakes begin the fall transition, I get pretty excited. Fall is my favorite season, and not because of college football, hunting season (looking at you dove, duck, and deer), or pumpkin spice, but because bass fishing, especially that shallow bite, will pick up again in full force.
As a kayak angler, the shallow bite is my bread and butter. It’s hard to get off shore in a kayak and fish humps and 40’+ deep brush piles while avoiding other boaters on the big lakes like Lanier and Allatoona. I usually retreat to the rivers and electric only reservoirs and wait until after Labor Day before I launch the plastic boat on the big water.
But when cooler nights come around and the bass start corralling bait shallow and move into the creeks, I take a sigh of relief and grab five of my favorite lures:
- Shaky head
- Jerk bait
Instead of going over those particular techniques (I’ll leave that to the experts), I want to put a spotlight on some of my favorite local North Georgia tackle companies that make those lures.
1. Sugar Hill Bait Company Shaky Head
It’s hard to beat a shaky head when fishing around docks and shallow brush or rocks. Sugar Hill Bait Company keeps it simple and to the point. While they make several lures like jigs, underspins, and more, for me it’s all about their Sweet Thang shaky head. They have produced a quality shaky head with various hook size and weight combos to match exactly what you need.It has outstanding performance and construction. Due to it’s unique shape, it comes through both rock, wood, and other structure really well.
My go-to size is the 3/16oz weight with the 4/0 hook. It pairs particularly well with another local bait, the Trixster Baits Tricky Worm. It’s the only shaky head I use, and it might be the same for you if you give it a shot.
Find Sugar Hill Bait Company on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Sugar-Hill-Bait-Company-213019532548989/.
2. Spot Choker Underspin
When bass are keyed in on smaller profile shad, the underspin is perfect for targeting them and standing out in a school of bait. I’m probably a little biased here. I’ve been good friends with Rob Williams, the designer of the Spot Choker, for many years; but the Spot Choker really is the hottest underspin on the market.
The Spot Choker underspin has a 5/0 Gamakatsu hook, upgraded components, and most importantly, an exclusive bait keeper design that makes it hold the trailer better than any other underspin on the market. Fish will not pull your fluke style bait or swimmer off, allowing you to catch more fish per bait.
I usually throw the 3/8oz Spot Choker with a 3 ½” - 4” swimbait like an X-Zone Swammer or Keitech Fat Swing Impact. Not only will you love the quality and the feel of Spot Choker's underspin; you’ll also love the quality of fish you catch with it. Do yourself a favor and pick up some Spot Chockers for this fall season.
Find Spot Choker on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SpotChoker.
3. True Grit Casting Jig
Jigs catch pigs. It’s a simple phrase, but true. Jigs just flat catch big fish all year round. The casting jig does it all, you can skip it, pitch it, drag it, and hop it. True Grit makes some of the best hand tied jigs around and they’re 100% handmade in Marble Hill, Ga. The heads are super durable, and they're molded on a super sharp, stout hook that pins the fish when you lay into it.
But the real deal for me is their color selection; colors like Fall Craw, Lanier Smoke, and Lip Smacker are the ticket this time of year. Heck, Ryan may even tie you a custom color if you ask nicely. True Grit Handmade Jigs should be a staple for any serious bass angler. I’ll have a ⅜ oz. size tied on all fall for targeting docks, lay downs, standing timber or brush, and any other shallow structure.
4. Georgia Blade UltraVibe Spinnerbait
Spinnerbaits are one of my all-time favorite lures. I’m always trying different brands, and always coming back to GA Blade. Georgia Blade is a bait company with over 30 years in the fishing industry. Their products are made with the finest workmanship, quality components, and produced locally in Dawsonville, GA.
I’ve been really liking the UltraVibe spinnerbait. Both the shad shaped and bullet head come through cover really well, and the special blades put out a great flash and vibration. Again, I’ll have a ⅜ oz. Real Shad or White Pearl colored spinnerbait tied on, and I’ll be bouncing it off of rocks and running it through lay downs all fall.
5. Lanier Baits Jerk Shad
Lanier Baits is based out of Dawsonville, GA. Their products are designed with the science of fishing in mind. They work to get the most alluring action and precisely formulate their plastic colors with light refraction and penetration in. mind. Their baits are even thoroughly tested on Lake Lanier.
The soft jerkbait is a staple in bass fishing. In the fall, I run the banks working it almost like a topwater bait, just under the surface of the water. Bass become unhinged for that wounded baitfish action. I use the Lanier Baits Jerk Shad in the FZNH20 or Pearl color either nose hooked or rigged weightless on a 4/0 EWG hook depending if I’m fishing around heavy cover or not.
This is not an exhaustive list of fall bass fishing lures to have on deck or an exhaustive list of local tackle companies. Hopefully it gives you some insight into some great companies to support when you get out on the water this September and October. North Georgia has several other quality tackle companies like 706 Fishing Lures, Softy Lure, Trixster Baits, ATX Lure Company, Farley Custom Swimbaits, Chattahoochee Jigs, Bass Captain, and more. You can purchase the suggestions in the blog above and products from these other fine companies at Fish North Georgia online and at our store in Marble Hill, GA. We hope you enjoy the fall season for everything it brings. If you need any other fishing suggestions, tips, or info, feel free to reach out or stop by.
Written by Nathan Skinner
Nathan Skinner is an avid kayak angler, designer, and FNG contributor. He lives in Canton, GA with his wife, Katie. You can usually find Nathan in his Bonafide SS127 fishing kayak on Hickory Log, Hollis Q. Lathem, Lanier, or Allatoona. You can find him on Instagram at @nachonathan.