Fishing Crankbaits for Late Autumn and Winter Bass
Bagley’s Pro Sunny B provides the perfect squarebill crankbait option
BEMIDJI, Minn. (October 29, 2020) – The Bagley Pro Sunny B was designed to put a larger “pro-sized” fast-action balsa wood crankbait in the hands of anglers. Introduced in 2018, the three-inch, half-ounce squarebill Bagley Pro Sunny B crankbait is a precision-weighted lure that casts easily and gets to a consistent 5-6 foot running depth every time. It has a higher body profile with tremendous buoyancy and deliberately designed tighter action for when fish are more docile. The Pro Sunny B crankbait is the perfect cross between a round and flat-sided crankbait to produce this tight action. It’s equipped with a square lip, letting you work it in heavy cover and around laydowns – spots where big bass tend to hang out.
Bagley’s Pro Sunny B crankbait is manufactured employing the exclusive Heat Compression Molding (HCM) process – a technological advancement in producing high-quality balsa lures. This unique production method allows for a welded through wire design, delivering greater lure strength and durability. The HCM process also allows for precise internal weighting that results in easy, far casting, and perfectly running baits, every time.
“The Pro Sunny B is one of my go-to baits for fall fishing,” says Bagley Pro Drew Benton. “Fall means bass are focused on bait – shad or maybe herring – and the Pro Sunny B does a great job of replicating that forage. I’d say that 90% of my fall crankin’ is centered around this squarebill.”
In terms of castability, Benton says the Pro Sunny B is ideal. “When you look at the balsa crankbait world, sometimes balsa baits are hard to throw because they’re light and buoyant. But the Pro Sunny B, with the HCM process and welded through wire is a bit heavier and casts really well.”
Benton continues: “In the fall, bass move shallow into the backs of creeks and up on those little channel swings where there’s a little bit of rock or laydowns – some kind of cover for bass to ambush schools of shad when they also work the backs of creeks. The Pro Sunny B really bangs off cover, too. I’ll cast back to the base of a tree trunk and hold my rod tip up, and crank that Pro Sunny B down the limbs of the tree and let it deflect off those limbs, and if I ever get hung, I just give it a little line, and the balsa bait floats back up and you start reeling again.”
Benton admits that sometimes the fall bite can be tough, however, but the Pro Sunny B puts the odds back in his favor. “When the Pro Sunny B is deflecting off wood or rock, that’s when you’re getting your bites. That’s the key with a squarebill crankbait; you want it to hit cover. You want it to deflect and make erratic movements to trigger bites. That’s where the Pro Sunny B gets the nod.”
Benton’s other biggest tip for fishing the Pro Sunny B revolves around color choice.
“Really make sure you understand what the primary forage is during the fall. Make sure you’re throwing the correct color. For me, that’s primarily shad patterns, but if the water’s dirty, I’ll go to the black back with chartreuse. And on river systems that don’t necessarily have big shad populations, I might go with a perch, craw, or bluegill pattern. But down south, like on the Tennessee River, fall triggers large shad migrations to the backs of the creeks and you see fish schooling on those shad. That’s when I throw shad patterns 100% of the time. The color choice really comes down to understanding what wins on your body of your water.”
Bagley Pro Scott Canterbury is another angler who keys in on the fall shad migration with shad-colored Bagley Pro Sunny B cranks.
“I fish the Bagley Pro Sunny B early fall all the way through winter and into early spring. During fall, I key into the shad migration and it really mimics shad well. As shad start to migrate, I break it down by cranking the first third, second third, and then the back third of the creek. Flatter points and channel swing banks are two things I target. Anywhere the channel swing is close to the bank and where those banks flatten out is where I throw the Pro Sunny B. You’re usually looking at five to seven feet of water and the Pro Sunny B’s diving depth is five to six feet, so I’m making contact with the structure. The deflection rate of the bait really helps it for getting bites. The size of the bait mimics the shad, too, as they’re getting a little bit bigger.”
In terms of gear, Canterbury recommends a seven-foot, medium-heavy cranking rod and a reel in the gear ratio range of lower six to 7:1. When it comes to line, Canterbury throws the Pro Sunny B on fluorocarbon. “Depending on the watercolor and the depth, I’m using anything 10 to 12 or 15-pound test fluorocarbon fishing line. The bait’s action is good, you don’t take the action out of it with 15. If you want it to run five, six, seven, or even eight feet deep on a longer cast you need to go down to a 10-pound line for deeper running and longer casts.”
Canterbury adds: “The tight action of the Pro Sunny B will get a lot more bites than most crankbaits this time of year. Combine that with the size of the bait that mimics the shad and the larger hooks for solid hookups, and you really have a champ, and what’s become my go-to fall crankbait across the country.”
Looking for more and bigger bass this fall? Consider the words of these pros and countless other anglers who have discovered the benefits of the Bagley Pro Sunny B—you won’t be disappointed.