Don't Do These Things When Fishing a Strike King Thunder Cricket

Don't Do These Things When Fishing a Strike King Thunder Cricket


Bladed swim jigs are a staple in every bass angler's arsenal, and the Strike King Thunder Cricket is one of the best ones around. But when Jeremy of Fishing the Lonestar started bass fishing, he struggled with bladed jigs. Jeremy calls out the bigger mistakes he made when he was first learning how to fish the Thunder Cricket and teaches you how to correct them so you can get comfortable fishing a bladed swim jig like a pro in no time. 

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Video transcript:

Jeremy:
That's going to be the best one of the morning, I believe. There's one. This feels like a pretty good one too. And there's a good example of a bass that was just sitting up in the pads, waiting to eat some bait fish.

Jeremy:
What's going on guys? Welcome back to the MonsterBass Channel. Today we are throwing the thunder cricket bladed jig. I just love the thumping action of this lure. We're going to talk about what makes this lure so special, how to catch fish on it. And quite honestly, we're going to talk about some things what not to do. Now, I've fished quite a bit. And in my early years, I struggled with bladed jigs. I admit it, I struggled with bladed jigs. And that's how I want to do this video. Talk about what not to do when fishing a bladed jig. Right? Some mistakes that I made that I feel like can help shorten your learning curve, help you catch more fish, and have lot of fun throwing such an awesome lure, like the thunder cricket.

Jeremy:
So, it's cold. We are approaching December. Water temps this morning are 57 degrees, you can see them out on the kayak today. We're going to do some fishing, we're going to do some talking, we're going to do hopefully some edumacating on the thunder cricket, and see if we can catch some fish and give out a few tips along the way. Let's go.

Jeremy:
All right guys, if we have not yet had the opportunity to meet, my name is Jeremy with Fishing the LoneStar. I'll leave the channel information below. Would love it if you would hop over there and give me a subscribe on my channel, Fishing The LoneStar. Doing what I can to grow the channel, to give out fishing tips, tricks, weekly updates, things like that that are happening and helping me catch fish, and hopefully help you catch more fish too. So be sure to check that out. But today we are talking all about bladed jigs, how to use them. I'll go a little bit into the gear that I use, but I really want to talk about the three things not to do.

Jeremy:
So let's dive in and talk about, number one. The thing not to do, is to reel it too fast and I'll talk about why that's important. There's one. That feels like a pretty good one too. All right guys, it's a good little fish right there. Carp had just ate it. Nice, healthy, fat fall fish. And there's that thunder cricket with a swim, just getting chewed on. That's fantastic. Great fish. Man, I love this bait. It's so good.

Jeremy:
All right guys, much like a crank bait, a bladed jig is meant to be fished slow. Now sure, absolutely. You can burn them, you can bring them over grass, you can pop them in and out of [inaudible 00:02:59], et cetera. Yes. You can do many things with a bladed jig. We'll talk about that as well during this video. But, one of the main things you want to do is reel it slow, because one of the things you don't want to do is reel it too fast. All right? The ideal thing to think about is to throw this lure as slow as you can, while still getting this blade in front to vibrate. All right? You should be able to feel the vibration. So go as slow as you can while feeling the vibration, it's going to allow just you to catch more fish. Yes, there's opportunities and times where you can burn them. We'll talk about that. But for the most part, fish it slow. Do not. Do not, fish this lure too fast.

Jeremy:
And I know personally, when I first started fishing the thunder cricket, I really liked the thump of it, but I also was reeling it way too fast. So, this that I'm using is a 6.8:1 gear ratio reel. I prefer this gear ratio for both bladed jigs and for throwing crankbaits on. So just FYI, that's kind of what I do, is I throw this both on my cranking stick and what I call kind of my Chatterbait bladed jig thunder cricket setup. So, that's what I like to do. And as I'm even talking, I'm starting to reel too fast, so I have to remind myself as well, don't reel too fast. You want to just barely reel this thing so that you're feeling the vibration.

Jeremy:
Now, I'm currently sitting in about 13, 14 feet of water. However, up in front of me is about five or six feet. So what I'm going to do is, I'm going to throw it out there, let it sink just a little bit. This is a half ounce thunder cricket. So it's going to be a little heavier, it's going to sink a little bit, and I want it to get down to the bottom, especially in these colder months. But really anytime, even in the summer. The only time sometimes I will burn it and reel it fast, the same reason if I throw it way up there, shallow, it's going to be two, three foot up there. So I'm going to throw it up there, but then burn it really quickly because I don't want this to get bogged down or stuck, but then I'm going to slow it back down as I pull back off into a little bit of deeper water.

Jeremy:
So, just a couple of different scenarios of when you may burn it or when you may fish it slow. And look, if you're fishing it slow and you feel yourself hit a brush pile, or you feel yourself, hit grass, just give it a quick popup and it'll shoot right up. And quite honestly, a lot of times when you're popping it up like that, out of grass or out of an obstruction, that's usually when the fish it's sitting in it, is going to swim up and eat it. Right? Because they see that prey or that bait fish kind of fleeing. So that's a couple of things to consider and keep in mind when you're reeling and retrieving a bladed jig. Don't reel too fast.

Jeremy:
Now, if you've watched my videos in the past, you'll know that I like throwing bladed jigs on a glass rod. So this is a TFO Tactical Glass Bass rod, it's a 7'4'', medium heavy, but a faster tip. So it's kind of like a moderate to fast action tip. But one thing I really like about the glass rod is it loads up really well when you're throwing a bladed jig.

Jeremy:
Keep in mind, it is a moving bait. You do have a big, big stout hook on this thing, but the fish are going to load themselves. Right? They're going to set the hook themselves because they're swimming after it. They're throwing... I'm sorry. You're throwing a moving bait, they're swimming after it pretty quick, you don't need to just rip their faces off. We'll talk about the hooks in just a minute of what not to do. But, just so you know, that little bit of a slower action rod that the glass rod gives you is also going to help in, not only hook into the fish, but land the fish as well. It helps soften the blow a little bit, when that bass comes crashing in to your thunder cricket.

Jeremy:
All right guys, let's talk about the second thing not to do. And that is to rip or pull this bait away from the fish. Now let me explain that. All right. If you notice, a bladed jig, thunder cricket is going to swim like this. Right? The head vibrates up like this. Now, if you notice, if I bend this back, it doesn't quite come close to the touch in the hook, but it almost serves as a bit of a weed guard. Right? Because if it's swimming like this, it's going to block timber, et cetera, from hitting your hook. Right? That's a good thing until a fish goes to bite it. So imagine your bait's swimming like this, fish comes and bites it. They're likely, unless they just miss that front blade and catch the hook, then you don't have to worry about it. But if they catch that front blade too, and as soon as you feel this, you've got to set the hook.

Jeremy:
When you pull, it's going to pull that blade forward and blow the fish's mouth open. And if you do that, you're going to miss fish. So, how do you prevent that? With your hook set. As soon as you feel a bite, do not jerk, rip, et cetera. You just want to lean, and then steady reel and the fish will hook themselves. But, as soon as you feel that fish bite this, if you go to pull it, I'm telling you, you're going to blow the fish's mouth open in this action right here. And you're going to miss a bunch of fish on the bladed jig. Okay?

Jeremy:
The thunder cricket's designed to deflect with this front blade, to move water with this front blade, to make noise with this front blade. But if the fish also gets that into their mouth, you are going to miss it, because of the front blade. So again, if you wait just a second, let that lure slide down in the fish's mouth and then set the hook. You're going to get them with the hook every time. Right? So, lean into with your hook set, and then reel. You'll have much better hookup ratios with a bladed jig

Jeremy:
So right now I'm fishing this thunder cricket, up in lily pads. You'll see some lily pad stems sticking out, kind of a shallow water, but these fish, they're still used to being in the lily pads all year long. So even though right now, we're in the cooler months and these pads are dying off, bait fish is still present, bass are still present and you can still catch them in these lily pads.

Jeremy:
Oh, there's one. And not only that, but the thunder cricket also deflects off the pads really well. And there's a good example of a bass, that was just sitting up in the pads, waiting to eat some bait fish. So, good little fish right there. Another one, on my thunder cricket.

Jeremy:
All right. Now, today I've been throwing the thunder cricket on, little paddle to a swim bait. But tip number three, of things not to do, don't be afraid to switch up to a crawl. Okay? So you can throw a crawl on the back of the thunder cricket as well, and it'll ride a little bit higher in the water column. So right now I'm going to throw in again the paddle tail, but a crawl style like this also works really well, coming through thicker grass and thicker pad. It'll allow it to stay a little bit upright and not turn over quite as much. But there you have it, both those green pumpkin, one with a paddle till, one with a crawl, both of them highly, highly effective.

Jeremy:
There's a decent one. That's going to be the best one of the morning, I believe. Thought he was better, but now they're a little short. Short, fat chunk, but these fish are healthy and they are chewing the thunder cricket. Such a great lure, any time of the year. Any time of the year, you can break this out, throw this thing, and catch some fish. Awesome.

Jeremy:
All right, guys, that's going to be a wrap for us out here today, using Strike King's thunder crickets. Now this is a very versatile lure. It's great to use time of year. And again, the three things, what not to do that I've learned from is, A, slow down a little bit, or I should say one. One, slow down a little bit, fish it a little bit slower and you'll get more bites, rather than burning it all the time. Now, if you're fishing shallow, like I was there at the end, then absolutely burn, fishing shallow. But majority of the time, fish it a little bit slower, as slow as you can while still feeling the vibration. That's exactly how you should fish this.

Jeremy:
And number two, ease in your hook sets. Okay? You want to kind of lean into them, don't jerk and rip. As soon as you feel the fish bite, you're going to miss hook sets, I promise you. Learn from my mistakes in fishing this lure and ease into your hook sets, lean into them, and then reel down. The fish will set themselves, you don't need a jerk hard, you'll miss them. Okay? So learn from me, ease into your hook sets. Lean into them and you'll catch more fish.

Jeremy:
And the last thing we'll cover is, just vary your trailers. All right? Don't be afraid to mix it up. I like to always throw a paddle tail, but a crawl works really well. A straight tail also works incredibly well in the back of the thunder cricket or the bladed jig. So, try different trailers in the back, depending on the situation you're in. And mix it up, have some fun, go catch some fish. The thunder cricket does a phenomenal job of putting you on fish. Along with that, MonsterBass. The Better Bag does an awesome job of giving you regional baits each month in the Regional Pro-Bag. So make sure you check out MonsterBass, the subscription. And make sure you subscribe right here to the MonsterBass Channel for more videos like this coming your way. All right? MonsterBass, go catch one.

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