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Best Way to Catch Striped Bass

Best Way to Catch Striped Bass

Striped Bass – The Opportunistic Feeder

Striped Bass, popularly known as Striper, is migratory specie that moves between freshwater and saltwater. The “opportunist” fish is native to North American Atlantic coast. It is one of the favorite trophy fish among anglers. The largest Striper ever caught weighed in around 37 kg. 

These migratory species can test your patience and angling skills. Not to mention, striped bass have unpredictable behavior. They are opportunistic feeders and tend to attack on plentiful and readily available baits. Since the fish are continuously on the move, catching striped bass is a little tricky. 

Catching the Striped Bass

If you get a chance to sit with a group of skilled anglers, every fisherman will recommend a different technique for hooking a striper. It is worth mentioning that the fishing site is one of the factors when learning to catch striped bass. Some techniques work better in certain locations, and some do not. 

Some of the best methods to reel in striped bass include fly-fishing, trolling, night fishing, and sight fishing. The effectiveness of these techniques depends on several variables, such as:

  • the striped bass season 
  • the fishing site/location
  • Your preference –either you want to fish a few large species or settle for a good score of school-sized stripers. 

Basic Guidelines

If you are an amateur in catching stripers, and you are planning to go striper fishing, here are some general tips that will make your experience a memorable one. 

  • Remember: Striped Bass live in both saltwater and freshwaters. Stripers living in saltwater have tidal current sensitivity. How a striped bass reacts to the tides and current varies from season to season and place to place. Knowing these variables makes the fishing trip more enjoyable. 
  • Stripers migrate from the freshwaters to saltwater and vice-versa. Therefore, the prime season for catching striped bass also changes from north to south. 
  • These fish love to stay close to structure; they tend to focus mainly on white baitfish. However, striped bass are opportunistic and unpredictable predators.

The key to catch scores of stripers is to be patient and willing to try multiple ways to entice the fish. Before we discuss the popular striper fishing methods, let’s have a look at the best lures for catching a striper. 

The Best Lures for Enticing Striped Bass

Skilled anglers, who may have hung a large striped bass on any artificial lure, know how jarring is that experience. The unpredictable striper does not strike a lure; you know nothing how it hits a bait, such as a crankbait, jig, or a surface plug. 

Striped bass creams the lure, smashes it, and tries to blow it to kingdom. What bait the stripers will entice the stripers depend on the location and the fishing season. While every angler has personal choices, live baits are easily the top favorites of all striper anglers. 

Not to forget, striped bass are opportunistic predators and focus on readily available feeds/lures. Some of the best live baits for striped bass include:

Bunker and Herring

Both these fish make for one of the best live baits for enticing stripers. However, you may not easily find a bunker or herring at a bait shop and many have to first catch these baits to entice the striper. 

Live Eels

Live baits also are an excellent lure for stripers and you can fish them in many ways. Note that fishing with live eels can be tough because the eels’ slime is difficult to handle and tangles the fishing line. Eels are particularly best for patient and keen anglers looking for a big catch. 

Other famous and effective live baits for enticing small and big striped bass include:

  • Clams
  • Bloodworms
  • Mullet
  • Sandworms
  • Anchovies
  • Squid
  • Croakers
  • Nightcrawlers

In addition to live baits, you can also use lures imitating the stripers’ forage in the location you are fishing. You can find artificial lures made of plastic, metal, resin, wood, or rubber. 

The Best Ways to Catch Striped Bass

Fly Fishing

Fly-fishing is perhaps one of the most exciting methods for catching a striper. The flies resemble the small baitfish and are lighter in weight. Fish flies allows for ultra slow movement in the water. Therefore, it becomes easier for anglers to catch the lethargic stripers slugging in the cold water. 

The prime time for fly-fishing for striper is early morning or afternoon when there is less penetration of light. Another good time is when the stripers are striking the bait at surface. Note that for fly-fishing, you need special gear, including sinking lines in different sizes and multiple rods. 


It is yet another popular method for landing striped bass in your bucket. Trolling is particularly best for amateurs looking to catch a good number. This method leverages water coverage that makes it easier to locate scores of fish. 

You can use multiple string lines in water simultaneously, thereby increasing your chances of catching more stripers than other. With this method, you can choose how deep you want to cast the lure and make changes according to the conditions. Moreover, trollers exercise full control over the lure’s speed. 

Sight Fishing

If you don’t have a fishing boat at your disposal, then catching stripers from the shores is the most exciting method. You can fish from piers, bridges, bulkheads, and even go for surf fishing. While sight fishing is a bit challenging, it is an effective technique for catching your target. What can be more exciting than to toss a lure at a striper and wait for it to bite?

Night Fishing

Night fishing for stripers is not very famous but an effective method. In case you don’t know, striped bass feed hard at night, and this makes it a prime time to score big. However, don’t forget to stock some additional gears in your tackle box, such as headlamp or flashlight, for the expedition. 

The lights work as lures for the stripers. Instead of live baits, dark color lures, such as something on browns, black, or purple, work better to catch striped bass at night. Therefore, if you want to enjoy the scrumptious striped bass, sacrificing few hours of sleep is no big deal.