In the summer, there’s nothing that bass love to eat better than gizzard shad, which is probably why larger-profile crankbaits work so well on ledges during that time of year. The problem with most of the big crankbaits is that they’re deep divers, which means they dig too much when you’re fishing a ledge or hump in, say, 10 feet of water.
The alternative is to crank them slower, which dampens their action so that they’re not as appealing. What I do instead is fish a crankbait on a heavier line, which doesn’t allow it to go so deep. I might use 20- or 25-pound test fluorocarbon. The thicker line’s resistance to the water will keep the bait up higher, without affecting its action too much.
You’ll have to experiment with your favorite lure as far as how it matches up best with different line tests. Upsizing the line will help you fish a big crankbait more effectively around fairly shallow ledges where bass are keying on gizzard shad.
---- Castrol pro David Dudley, Lynchburg, Va.