Prespawn Shallow Cranking: A Dynamite Technique

Check out the bait that everyone should have in their arsenal, the @StrikeKingLure KVD 1.5! Spring / pre-spawn shallow cranking, #crawfish pattern tips out the action on the KVD 1.5. When the water’s dirty, look to the brighter colors, and the opposite in clean water.

Recommended to change out your hooks to the @MustadFishing KVD triple grips for extra bite. And the go-to rod? The @LewsFishing 7-foot medium action CC2, check out the link below!

Strike King KVD 1.5 Series:

Lew’s / KVD fishing rods:

KVD Mustad Fishing hooks:

The Go-To Bait: KVD 1.5

You know shallow cranking is something that I love to do and in early spring during the pre-spawn it can be just absolutely dynamite. One of my mainstay go-to baits is still a KVD 1.5. Now we have a couple of different versions.

We’ve got the new hard knock that has that knocker in it that makes a lot of sound, and then the standard silent version. It still displaces a lot of water. I mean, it’s the hunting action, the way that that bait wanders, the way that it kicks off the cover, and that it’s so weedless around wood, rocks, laydowns, riprap—everything.

It just doesn’t hardly hang up and it triggers a lot of bites for that 3 to 6 ft zone. It’s just a phenomenal fish-catching bait.

Choosing the Right Pattern

In the spring, I do like crawfish patterns. When the water’s dirty, you know, I want bright crawfish patterns like this fire craw. If the water is kind of clean, you know, that brown craw or a watermelon craw is going to be what you’re looking for.

If the fish are focused on shad and you’re seeing a lot of shad activity on your graph, man, I’m still going to use shad patterns. Sexy shad and baitfish patterns do perform in the spring, but day in, and day out, I do focus on crawfish patterns. It can be dynamite for shallow cranking.

The Perfect Setup: Rod, Reel, and Line

My go-to setup is my signature KVD series cranking system. So I love the 7-foot medium action, the CC2 for square bills. It’s perfect because, you know, it’s long enough that I can make a long cast.

I can use the rod tip, lifting it high to get that bait shallower over the top of grass and cover and things like that. Or I can put the rod tip down and allow this bait to get to its maximum depth. It’s got the right action for this particular bait.

I’m going to match it with fluorocarbon, again a lighter line for deeper presentations, a heavier line around heavier cover and in dirty water—up to 14, 17, even 20 lb test line. And I’m going to throw it on my signature cranking reel. It’s a 6.2:1 gear ratio. It’s just perfect, especially in that pre-spawn period for cranking these baits around.

Hook Upgrades: Mustad Triple Grip Treble Hooks

One thing that I like to do is upgrade and upsize my treble hooks. So, I put KVD Mustad triple grip number 2. They’re extra short, they’re extra wide gap, and they’re extra strong. That bigger hook does not hurt the action; it helps the action. It makes that bait more erratic.

It makes it hurt even more and triggers more bass into biting. Once you get one on, I mean, they’re super strong. They don’t flex. They won’t tear out or anything like that—they lock those fish on. These are dynamite.

I have made so much money in tournaments by changing to these trebles. To me, it’s a critical part of this crankbait. A KVD 1.5 is a bait that everybody has to have in their arsenal, and it is a deadly fish catcher in the spring.

Head over to Bass Pro Shops to get the top-quality fishing tools I rely on. For all your bass fishing and outdoor sports needs:


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