In early 2000, my husband and I were traveling for a couples’ tournament in Greenwood, SC. While visiting a local tackle shop I saw this lure called a Chatterbait. It was a peculiar looking thing. I thought it looked like a swim jig attached to a piece of tin. Curiosity won, so we made the purchase.
I attached a curly tail grub as the trailer and off we went. At first cast, I liked how far I could throw it. During the retrieve I was taken aback by the vibration I felt. On the first hookset, I had a knee jerk reaction and away the bass went. It was a learning curve. I quickly learned to give it a second after the strike, quite like the moments waiting with a topwater bait, and voila, fish in the boat! Needless to say, the Chatterbait has been a basic necessity in my arsenal ever since.
The Chatterbait shines when other moving baits lose their luster. For instance, when a crankbait only gets a sniff or blasted and the bass just isn’t committing, try the Chatterbait. No one says reeling has to start as soon as it hits the water. It can be counted down to different depths. If using a 4-6’ diving crankbait, count the Chatterbait down to the appropriate depth…one Mississippi, Two Mississippi, three…you get the point.
The Chatterbait shines on its own in almost any condition. A lot of fisherman love the Chatterbait under cloudy conditions and when it’s raining and a spinnerbait isn’t producing. I’ll not argue the Chatterbait works great under these circumstances. Many times, during a rain storm I’ll chose it over a spinner bait. But don’t get caught up in the norm and limit the possibilities of the Chatterbait. It also shines in clear water and on sunny days. A prime example, while I was throwing a frog over grass on a bright clear morning, the bass were just swatting at the frog. I picked up my Chatterbait and started fishing over the grass. Several times when the grass grabbed the bait, a few light twitches and the bait would break loose often creating a reaction strike.
In more recent days, I prefer to add a fluke as my trailer. I like to stick with white on white Chatterbait’s and flukes or more natural colors. I rig on a Powell 7ft Inferno with 17lb fluorocarbon line. This does the trick even when fishing over grass.
I haven’t found a condition yet where a Chatterbait couldn’t serve the purpose of putting bass in the boat.
Now go catch fish