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Getting Back To Fishing - Artificials what do you use? & How


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I'm about 90% pop'n corks and jigs or bare hooks when i fish the backcountry and have had some good success.


Recently, when fishing I was side by side with a buddy....he was doing the live shrimp and I was using some gulp swimming mullet under a pop'n cork....we were both hitting reds along a bank we were fishing...


So far, I have some gulp swimming mullet, some voodoo shrimp (they work well), and just bought some Zman shrimp to try after seeing a recent episode on Flatsclass - ok, i'm a sucker TV fishing shows  stuff they show.....


So, All you arti-experts........






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Depends on water clarity. I have a couple "go-to's" for soft plastics and dirty water. I prefer murkier water too so...

Saltwater assassins- Chicken on a Chain

Gulp- White shrimp with chartreuse tail

Both with Z-Man Trout Eye 1/4oz jig head

Clean Water I use SaltWater Assassins Opening Night


every now and again I'll Texas Rig with a 1/8oz bullet weight and a gulp shrimp

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Lots of options on this subject....everybody fishes differently but still we all catch fish...after many years I have simplified a few things for myself.....

Trout / Redfsh / Flounder: 

Top water at daylight or overcast:  Zara Spook Jr. ....red head / silver or white body

screwtails : DOA " Copper Crush " or DOA " Arkansas glow" on 1/8 or 1/4 oz jig head depending on current or depth

paddletails: DOA "Copper crush" "Fiji chicken" or Slayer Lures " buttery nipple" .....1/8 or 1/4 oz jig head depending on current or depth

Tripletail : 

on crab pots or range markers....Paradise Popper (popping cork) with 12" to 36" leader / Mustad 5/0 needle power lock hook in 1/32oz with DOA 5" or 7" jerk bait in " copper crush" " glow" or DOA Airhead in "hologram silver. "  also have used to DOA SnaKoil in  " avacado red" ( yes this is a freshwater bait but the tripletail don't know it 😀 )

Artificial baits **** bottom line : they all work, every brand, you must have confidence in artificial to be successful with them. I have bought a thousand different types over the years and have finally narrowed it down to what I like for certain situations...also..my tackle bag no longer weighs 50 lbs !  I keep it simple....JJ

the catch below was at daylight yesterday morning.... Zara Spook Jr until sun got up hot, then screwtails. It wasn't a boat load, but after two weeks of hurricane cleanup, very dirty water...I was happy to get a chance to fish for a couple of hours.


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I rarely use bait, and rotate between 3 artificial baits: white or green gulp jerkbait on either jighead or 3/16 oz swimbait hook, gold spoon, and 3 inch gulp shrimp white with chartreuse tail (my favorite redfish sight fishing bait). 

I throw some topwater but we have had so much floating grass lately it's been tougher, and quite honestly the fishing is pretty poor right now. 

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I mainly sight fish in very shallow water so use Gulp about 95% of the time - Gulp shrimp in Natural or New Penny or Gulp Jerk Shad in white/chartreuse on a 1/16 oz or 1/8 oz Flutter hook, rigged weedless. I also will break out the baitcaster and throw Top Dogs or Top Pups in deeper water when the sun is low.

I haven't bought live shrimp in at least 5 years - not that I have anything against live bait, but where I fish most of the shrimp are destroyed quickly by pinfish or catfish. Few survive to find a redfish or trout. Most guides in our area stake out and soak cut bait or finger mullet.

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14 hours ago, Fishtails said:

Snook, redfish, trout love this pilchard replica. Yozuri. Also love to toss white bucktail tipped with fresh shrimp. Catches everything.(does that count as arti?) 


Ok I gotta find this one....it might led to more of these



it it might lead to more of these 




Or more of these




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I try to stay away from using a popping cork and gulp simply because it reminds me of bream fishing as a kid. Just sitting around waiting on a cork to go under. Lol I use a lot of top water lures and poppers so get the excitement and rush of the fish crushing it. Get a lot of misses but even the missed ones are a thrill. I like any  lure I can "walk the dog" with in two colors depending on water clarity. Clear I go with white or bone and dirty I like a black body and orange belly. Another lure I always use is  Cotton Cordell rattling Redfin in black and orange or crome. It's a subsurface lure I've caught a lot of reds on. While I'm up front tossing lures my girlfriend is in the back of the boat with a new penny under a cork killing me on reds most of the time! 😂 So go figure 

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Sunrise:  top water. Concave face that pops or Skitterwalk.

always have a light jig head with 3-4" paddletail (color depends on water color).  Sometimes 5" jerk bait on light weight hook.  Mirrodine mini.   All the stuff in my tackle box and basically these 4 lures I use 90% of time

shrimp pattern fly and .this time of year when Reds are nose in the mud, I tie a stupid looking black/brown piece of yarn that kinda looks like a worm and let it sink.  

If i "must" catch, chunk or live bait...but that's rare in my world (it is however the guides go to so their clients catch).

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