The 8 Best Lure Styles for Bass

We break down the types of baits you need in your tackle box

buzz baits

Buzzbaits

Duckett's buzzbait choice is either a 3⁄8- or 1⁄2-ounce offset buzzer in black or white. Pro Tip: "I throw white when it's sunny, but most times I start with black," says Duckett. "But don't be afraid to swap it. If you're on a buzzbait bite, the thing to do is throw them both. It just takes a minute, and bass will usually tell on themselves quickly."Tim Tucker
carolina rig

Carolina-rig weights

Forget about the pros who drag 3⁄4- and 1-ounce weights on their Carolina rigs--stick with lighter weights. Pro Tip: Duckett believes the novice angler should use a C-rig that consists of a 1⁄2-ounce sinker with a small glass bead, a swivel and a 3/0 hook.
"A half-ounce Carolina-rig weight is a size that covers a lot of situations," he says.
Tim Tucker
crankbait lure

Crankbaits

A 1⁄2-ounce Rat-L-Trap in crawfish or chrome with a black or blue back is your best bet. Pro Tip: "A half-ounce Rat-L-Trap is the most versatile crankbait," he says. "You can run it across the top of grass, cover open water, bring it through docks or across laydowns. You can cover the water column from one to fifteen feet--if you're patient enough."Tim Tucker
jerkbait

Jerkbaits

You'll need two types of these small-lipped minnowbaits to cover the water column: 
suspending and floating. Pro Tip: For a suspending jerkbait, Duckett recommends a shad-colored Strike King Wild Shiner. His floating version would be this 6-inch Smithwick Rattlin' Rogue shallow-runner in black back with gold sides and an orange belly.Tim Tucker
jigs and trailers

Jigs & Trailers

Load up on 1⁄2-ounce black-and-blue or pumpkin jigs with matching Berkley Powerbait Chigger Craw trailers to cover the widest range of scenarios. Pro Tip: "You can use that size to cover most depths," says Duckett. "Those two colors are about all I throw anymore. I've got a box full of colors, but that's all you need. The key is where you throw them."Tim Tucker
spinnerbaits

Spinnerbaits

With a couple of white or white-and-chartreuse 1⁄2-ounce spinnerbaits, you'll be prepared for most situations. Pro Tip: "That's a good all-around spinnerbait," says Duckett. "A half-ounce is a whole lot easier to work than a smaller or larger size. You can fish it fairly deep, run it through cover, like brush and grass, or wake it just under the surface."Tim Tucker
texas rig weights

Texas-rig weights

We've tried to narrow the hardware to one size for each category, but the fact is that you'll need four sizes of weights to keep your 
soft-plastic offerings in firm contact with the bottom. Pro Tip: Duckett simplifies things by suggesting the 1⁄8- and 1⁄4-ounce size for 6- to 7-inch soft-plastics, and 5⁄16- and 1⁄2-ounce for 8- to 10-inch baits.Tim Tucker
topwater lure

Topwater lures

Limit the Classic champion to a single topwater teaser, and he'll opt for the versatility of a Lucky Craft Sammy 100 that features a brown back and clear sides. Pro Tip: This 4-inch surface lure, which emits a rattling sound, has a multidimensional appeal. It combines a walk-the-dog motion with the spitting action of a popper.Tim Tucker

In most situations, these are the only lures you'll ever really need.