Mastering Topwater Bass Fishing: Unlocking Explosive Strikes and Exciting Action

Topwater bass fishing is an exhilarating technique that combines skill, strategy, and the thrill of explosive strikes. To truly master topwater fishing, it's essential to understand various factors such as time of day analysis, lure selection, water conditions, retrieval techniques, and more. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into each aspect in extreme detail, providing you with the knowledge to maximize your success and experience the excitement of topwater blowups.

a colorful bird hanging from a fishing hook
a colorful bird hanging from a fishing hook

Before we dive into our comprehensive guide on top water fishing, we want to make it clear that this blog post may contain Amazon affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. These affiliate links help support our efforts in providing valuable fishing information and recommendations. Rest assured, the recommendations provided are based on our knowledge and research, and we strive to offer unbiased suggestions to assist you in making informed purchasing decisions. Now, let's proceed with our guide to choosing the perfect bass fishing rods and reels for every budget.

Section 1: Time of Day Analysis

Timing plays a crucial role in topwater bass fishing. By understanding the behavior of bass during different periods of the day, you can optimize your chances of success. Let's explore two key timeframes:

1. Early Morning:

- Timeframe: During the first hours after sunrise.

- Bass Behavior: Bass are often more active near the surface during low-light conditions, seeking an easy meal.

- Recommended Lures: Opt for subtle-action lures such as poppers or walking baits. Specific brands like the Rebel Pop-R ( and Heddon Zara Spook ( work well during this time.

- Lure Selection Tips: Choose natural color patterns to imitate wounded baitfish or frogs. Experiment with a steady retrieve or pause-and-twitch technique to trigger strikes.

2. Evening:

- Timeframe: As daylight begins to fade, typically a few hours before sunset.

- Bass Behavior: Bass become more aggressive during this time, actively searching for prey near the surface.

- Recommended Lures: Transition to lures with more aggressive action like buzzbaits or prop baits. Consider brands such as the Booyah Buzz ( and River2Sea Whopper Plopper (

- Lure Selection Tips: Experiment with bolder color patterns to improve visibility. Vary your retrieval speed, incorporating bursts of speed or sudden pauses to mimic fleeing prey or wounded baitfish.

Section 2: Lure Selection

Choosing the right topwater lure is crucial for enticing bass to strike. Let's explore different styles of topwater lures and their recommended brands:

1. Popper Lures:

- Action: These lures create a popping sound and splashes on the surface, imitating a wounded or struggling baitfish.

- Recommended Brands: Rebel Pop-R, Heddon Chug'n Spook.

2. Walking Baits:

- Action: Walking baits produce a side-to-side "walk the dog" action, mimicking the movements of a wounded or fleeing baitfish.

- Recommended Brands: Zara Spook, Yo-Zuri 3DB Pencil.

3. Buzzbaits:

- Action: Buzzbaits create surface commotion with their rotating blades, attracting bass through sound and vibration.

- Recommended Brands: Booyah Buzz, Strike King Mini Pro-Buzz.

Section 3: Water Conditions and Locations

The success of topwater fishing also depends on water conditions and specific locations. Let's explore various scenarios:

1. Shallow vs. Deep Water:

- Shallow Water: Target areas near the banks, weed beds, or submerged structures where bass seek shelter and ambush prey.

- Deep Water: Focus on drop-offs or submerged humps where bass may lurk in deeper areas.

2. Water Clarity:

- Dirty Water: Use lures with more visible color patterns to help bass locate them. Consider using lures with a larger silhouette.

- Clear Water: Opt for more subtle and realistic color patterns to match the natural forage. Use lures with a smaller profile for a more natural presentation.

3. Weather and Cover:

- Pads, Grass, and Shade: These areas provide shade and cover for bass

. Target them with lures that can navigate through vegetation, such as frogs or weedless topwater lures.

- Windy Conditions: Utilize lures with louder and more disruptive actions to draw attention in choppy water.

Section 4: Retrieval Techniques and Excitement of Blowups

The way you retrieve your topwater lure can make a significant difference in attracting bass. Consider the following techniques:

1. Steady Retrieve: Imitate a wounded or struggling baitfish by maintaining a consistent and rhythmic retrieve.

2. Pause and Twitch: Add pauses and quick twitches during your retrieve to mimic a baitfish darting erratically.

3. Speed Variations: Experiment with different retrieval speeds, including slow retrieves to entice sluggish bass and faster retrieves to trigger reaction strikes.

Blowups: Experience the exhilaration of bass breaking the surface to attack your lure. Stay calm and wait for the bass to fully engulf the lure before setting the hook to ensure a solid hookup.

Section 5: Topwater Lure Size and Trailers

Choosing the right lure size is essential for targeting the fish you are after. Consider the following factors:

- Match the size of your topwater lure to the prevalent forage in the area.

- Experiment with using trailers on your lures to enhance action or increase profile size.

- When using trailers, consider using similar or contrasting colors based on water clarity and the bass's preferences.

Section 6: Line Selection

Selecting the right line is crucial for successful topwater fishing. Consider the following:

- Monofilament or fluorocarbon lines are recommended due to their buoyancy and low visibility.

- Specific brands and types like Berkley Trilene XL ( or Seaguar Red Label ( offer excellent performance.

- Choose line strengths ranging from 10 to 20 pounds based on the size of the fish you are targeting.


Mastering topwater bass fishing requires a deep understanding of various factors, including time of day analysis, lure selection, water conditions, retrieval techniques, and more. By immersing yourself in the details of each section, you can increase your chances of enticing explosive strikes and experiencing the thrill of topwater blowups. So, equip yourself with the right knowledge, gear up with suitable lures, and get ready to embark on an exciting topwater bass fishing adventure!