5 Ultralight Fishing Lures You’ll Wish You’d Fished All Year.

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Ultra light lures like spinners and micro jigs are perfect for bluegill fishing.

Using ultralight fishing lures can be a fun and effective way to switch up your tactics. For me, I have difficulty putting down the heavier setups; the 30-50 lb braid on a heavy power rod, the big bullet spinners targeting large German Browns, for example –  it’s too tempting! But, there comes a time when the bite disappears, and the power-fishing gets old, and switching to an ultralight fishing setup is the way to go. Trust me!

You also cast a wider net ( so to speak) because a smaller presentation appeals to an array of different species.  I always have a small box of the following lightweight lures on deck for targeting everything that swims.

1.) Rebel Teeny-Wee Craw

If you like covering water fast, then the Teeny Wee Craw should be your first choice. Of course, there are tons of micro-crank bait lures, but the Teeny-Wee Craw and its larger versions are just simply superior in terms of accuracy. The body of this bait is ribbed and painted to perfection like a crayfish in flight mode, and produces a tight, side-to-side wobble. The mere size of this lure is an attribute that rings the dinner bell for smaller trout, bass, crappie, bluegill, and other species. For more on the Rebel Craw, check out this Premier Angler article for a full review.

If I’ve been power fishing most of the day with heavier tackle, the Rebel Wee Craw is the first lure I’ll pick up after making to switch to ultralight. It’s usually right after this I begin seeing the most action; that subtle switch to a downsized presentation that fires those fish up.

Ultralight Fishing Lures: How To Fish It

As a shallow running crankbait, the wee craw runs well across rocks and gravel bottom. Fishing it through mud causes a commotion as it kicks up debris, and like a crankbait, you can retrieve and pause and play at different speeds. Other facts:

  • Best thrown on 4-6 lb line
  • Perfect for creeks for their shallow-running depth
  • Imitates a craw swimming backward

2. Rooster Tail

The rooster tail has a special place in my tackle box year-round. As a trout lure, I’ve caught both quantity and quality fish on the rooster tail and its versatility is unrivaled. When around bluegill and crappie, and especially in low light conditions (early morning), I’ll throw a black roostertail with a silver blade around shallow cover like brush piles and fallen trees. It’s amazing the number of bites you will receive vs casting a larger bladed jig while trying to isolate those larger fish.

The flash of a rooster tails attracts all kinds of panfish and small bass.

Ultralight Fishing Lures: How To Fish It

Fish it around cover or open water. Rooster tails are also effective in rivers when fishing for trout. Casting upstream and retrieving downstream imitates an injured minnow. And that flash of the blades attracts fish of all kinds in creeks, reservoirs, and deep, natural lakes. Remember, the rooster tail sinks quickly so locating fish at any depth isn’t a problem. Cast out, let it fall to the optimal depth, give it a fast-twitch to activate the blades, and begin your retrieve – pretty easy.

3.) Rapala Minnow

As a multi-species bait, the Rapala original floating minnow is probably my favorite mid-water lure. You can fish it fast, slow, twitch and pause, burn it and pause, any way you like. It’s a great lure to use as a follow-up to a larger jerkbait or bladed jig. Minnows that I like to use when the going gets tough:

  • Rapala Original Floating Minnow 2″
  • Rapala Countdown
  • Husky Jerk 2″


These baits are perfect for Crappie, Trout, Large and Smallmouth Bass, Bluegill, and Perch. In fact, I’ve caught all these species in one day on a Rapala original floating. I always have a spinning rod with a 6-8lb monofilament line and a small jerkbait like the ones above tied on for days when I want bites. 

Ultralight Fishing Lures: How To Fish It

If I reach the point when a full-size lure isn’t producing bites, I’ll tie on a 2″ Rapala Orginal Floating minnow with a max depth of 5′. I’ll fish it around weed lines and shallow water cover, mostly aiming for the bank and retrieving it down to deeper water.

4) Ultralight Crank Baits

Ultralight fishing has plenty of opportunities to throw small cranks to achieve the same imitation as their larger, deep-diving versions. Check out some of these brands below:

Lightweight and micro crank baits are perfect ultralight fishing lures for when the fishing is slow.

Ultralight Fishing Lures: How To Fish It

On a 6lb monofilament line, try working rocky banks and near cover. Like a standard-size crankbait, try burning it and give it a pause and tick the edge of rocks and stumps. The size and action of this lure open the door to Smallmouth Bass and entices a flurry of strikes.

5.) Tubes

Tubes are awesome lures for summer bass fishing. Texas-rigged or on a tube hook, they have the potential to slip in and out of thick grass and catch some real hogs. But there are days when even summer bass won’t touch a full-size tube craw. Time to downsize!

Check out some of the brands I like to throw:

  • The Original Fat Gizit 2.5″
  • Hookup Baits Tube Jig

Ultralight Fishing Lures: How To Fish It

Ultralight fishing lures like the Gitzit Tubes are perfect for downsizing and appealing to smaller, aggressive fish.

There isn’t much difference between a standard size and a smaller tube. As a baitfish/craw imitator, you can slip this lure through light grass on a 3/16 oz texas rig. On a tube hook, you can swim it straight or jig it vertically with light pops and twitches. The result will be twice the amount of bites from large and smallmouth bass, bluegill, and crappie. You can also hop a tube along the bottom and swim it back along weed lines.

Final Thoughts

All in all, these lures are my go-to. I would say that you should play with everything out there to find your preference. Experiment with line weights, rod length, and types of lures to determine what works best on your local water. These lures generally produce more action from smaller fish but are fun and exciting to use around active fish.




6 thoughts on “5 Ultralight Fishing Lures You’ll Wish You’d Fished All Year.”

  1. Very great review on these lures! 100% agree on everything here! I’ve never used the rebel craw. The rooster tails are very good for trout! My favorites are the small jerkbaits rebel and the tube jigs. I’ve not used many small cranks, just a few.

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