So you’ve brought your son or daughter fishing for the first time. You’ve been catching bluegill all morning with nightcrawlers/bobber and it’s time to try something new. So what are the best kid friendly lures to try?
What works for you probably won’t work for
A Few Tips to Keep Fishing Fun
We all love taking our children fishing for the first time. It’s not about catching a ton of fish, it’s about creating lasting memories so they’ll want to keep coming back. Here are a few tips to make sure your day stays fun.
- Start With The Basics: Everybody should learn how to fish a basic bobber/nightcrawler combo. Handling and tearing a few nightcrawlers seems to help build confidence once they need to handle their first own fish.
- Move onto Faster Lures: Children have a short attention span so don’t be surprised when they’re bored of watching a bobber. Move onto faster lures that require a lot of casts. They’re so much more fun to use and helps with basic casting skills.
- Plan Plenty of Breaks: Bring lots of snacks and expect a little bit of goofing off. Just because you can sit and fish for hours on end doesn’t mean a child can. Let them play in the grass and maybe even get a little bit wet.
- Don’t Push: Not every child will be able to handle their first fish. If they aren’t ready pushing only leads to tears and ruining the experience.
- Know When to Call it Quits: Plan on only spending a few hours down on the water. When their minds start to wander change things up. Try Going for a walk, having lunch or feeding the ducks. You can get back to fishing after you’re done.
Kid Friendly Bass Lures
You can’t expect your child to have the patience to work a jerkbait across the bottom or get that perfect pitch onto the edge of the weeds. It’s all about setting realistic expectations and getting their lure in front of as many fish as possible.
Spinnerbaits are one of the easiest lures to master, plus they’re proven to catch a ton of fish. Go with smaller lures like the Booyah Pond Magic Spinnerbait. Smaller spinnerbaits will still bring in bass, but they’re also small enough for panfish.
There’s no complicated rigging or technique that you need to teach. Just point out where your child should cast and let them reel them in. Eventually something going to bite.
Plus most spinnerbaits are pretty weedless so they’re perfect from shore. I like working parallel to shore right along the grassline. There’s sure to be a few monsters looking for an easy meal.
Grubs paired with a small jig are an excellent foray into soft plastic lures. Those 3-inch Mister Twister Grubs are
Once again it’s all about that weedless setup and keeping things easy. This setup is really easy to cast and bass love them. Don’t expect perfect casts every time and get ready to help work your way out of cover.
3) Poppers and Jitterbugs
There’s just something fun about fishing topwater lures. Watching bass break the surface is what really got me excited about fishing. They’re easy to cast and don’t require much training to get the technique down.
They aren’t completely weedless which could be a problem for young children. Just try to work them along the
4) Hollow-Body Frogs
Hollow-Body frogs are another weedless lure that works really well in heavy cover. You’ll clean on those early mornings and late night fishing trips when bass invade the shallows.
There are a lot of great frogs out there, but I always stick to the basics. Booyah’s Padcrasher and the KVD Sexy Frog are two of my favorites. Check Out my post on frog lure modifications to get the most out of your frogs.
Frogs tend to bring out those massive surface explosions that really turn up the heat. They bring in huge bass, but they’re mostly ignored by bluegill and other small fish. Plus they’ll never get hung up regardless of the cover you’re working.
5) Lipless Crankbaits and Squarebills
During the spring spawn you can really tear up the shallows using a lipless and squarebill crankbaits. Your choice will depend on how much grass and debris there is.
These probably won’t be your first choice for young fisherman, but older kids will quickly learn the technique. Kids tend to reel faster than they should so go with a model designed for 2-3 feet deeper water than you would normally choose.
I’ve had a lot of luck fishing the Red eye shad and Strike King Squarebills in shallow water. You’re definitely going to lose a few
6) Night Crawlers and Soft Plastic Worms
At some point in every kids life you need to teach them how to fish with nightcrawlers. There’s just something about digging into a cup of worms that brings out our primal nature.
You’ll probably get more bluegill bites than bass, but that doesn’t really matter. Bringing in fish is all most kids care about. Doesn’t matter if it’s a 2 inch bluegill or monster bass.
Stick to smaller 5-7 inch worms and your basic color schemes. That way you’ll be able to catch a wider range of fish.