The Inshore Saltwater Fishing Spring Tackle Checklist
This is the ULTIMATE Spring Tackle Checklist for Inshore Saltwater Anglers!
If you need to dust off your gear and lures to get ready for spring, then watch this to know exactly what you need.
Check it out!!
Spring Tackle Checklist [VIDEO]
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- Moonwalker Topwater Lure
- Slam Shady 2.0
- Gold Digger
- Alabama Leprechaun
- Power Prawn U.S.A.
- Hoss Helix Hooks
- Dr. Juice Saltwater Slam Scent
- Gulp! Shrimp
- Berkely Vanish Fluorocarbon Leader
- Saltwater Assassin Pro Elite Jigheads
- Owner Weighted Twistlock Hooks
- Power Prawn Jr. ‘Brazilian Shrimp’
Some anglers prefer to store away their gear for the winter until the warmer weather of spring rolls around.
Now is the time to get your tackle box prepped and ready to go for spring!
When it comes to artificial lures in the spring, size and profile are going to be of the utmost importance.
The weather tends to be a bit more erratic during the spring so it is important to be ready for any scenario you may encounter.
Our #1 choice of lures to use first thing in the morning are topwater plugs.
The Salt Strong Moonwalker topwater lure comes equipped with strong single-inline hooks and rattles for extra attraction.
It is about 4-inches long and is an extremely effective walk-the-dog style topwater lure.
You can also find success on overcast days and sunsets when fishing topwater lures in spring.
The Alabama Leprechaun is a 5-inch jerk shad that we’ve found is best rigged on a 1/16 oz. or 1/8 oz. weedless weighted hook.
The reason for choosing lighter-weight options is that the fish can be quite shallow in the spring.
You do not want a heavy presentation to cause chaos when it lands in the water and scare off all the fish.
If you are fishing in calm and glassy conditions, then turn to the Alabama Leprechaun in shallow water fishing scenarios.
On the other hand, if conditions are a bit more choppy and unpredictable, turn to a paddletail lure.
The color and profile of paddletail lure depends on the type of bait you are seeing most around you as well as the water clarity.
Our #1 go-to choice of paddletail regardless of conditions or bait is the Slam Shady 2.0 paddletail.
The Slam Shady is a white-bodied 3.5-inch paddletail with some flashes of silver and gold in the body.
During the spring, baitfish are going to be in the 3-4 inch range which makes these paddletails ideal choices for this time of year.
As far as rigging, weedless weighted hooks are the best pairing for these paddletails but of slightly heavier weights that jerk shads.
1/8 oz. or more depending on conditions are ideal weights for fishing a paddletail lure.
You want a slightly heavier weight to keep your lure down near the bottom of the water column.
Lighter hooks can cause the lure to rise out of the intended water column.
If you had to only go with one paddletail color, the Slam Shady 2.0 will not fail.
But, if you do see lots of shrimp in your area and fish feeding on shrimp, then go with the F.R.E.D. paddletail.
This is also a great lure for backwater creeks and tidal pools that fill into larger estuaries and bays.
The light pinkish hue of the F.R.E.D. can mimic a shrimp while also maintaining a paddletail presentation.
Lastly, if the water is murky and dirty resulting in little to no water clarity, the Gold Digger paddletail is your best bet.
The Gold Digger is a black paddletail with gold flake sprinkled throughout the lure.
Gold actually needs less light to flash than silver which is why this is the go-to lure for murky water conditions.
Artificial Shrimp Lures
We recently introduced our Power Prawn U.S.A. artificial shrimp lures which take everything we love about shrimp lures and combine them into the best shrimp lure out there.
We also still do carry the ‘Brazilian Shrimp’ Power Prawn original and Jr. sizes.
The Brazilian Power Prawn is made out of TPE material and comes in packs of 2-3 lures.
Our new Power Prawn U.S.A. is in packs of 5 lures and is made of plastisol like all of our paddletail lures.
You always want to have a shrimp imitation with you on every fishing trip.
As far as rigging techniques for the Power Prawn U.S.A., we also created Hoss Helix Hooks.
Hoss Helix Hooks are 4/0 weedless weighted hooks that have a wider hook gap to increase the hookup ratio on big fish.
Hooks & Jigheads
You need to always have different weedless weighted hooks with you at all times.
By having weedless weighted hooks of 1/8 oz. and 1/16 oz., you are prepared to use different lures at different depths in the water column.
Jigheads are also important to have for different scenarios you may encounter.
The Saltwater Assassin Pro Elite jigheads are perfect for deeper water or if you are fishing in areas without grass.
This lure’s necessity varies depending on the area you fish in.
In some areas, black drum will show up on the flats and strike Gulp! shrimp lures.
Gulp! shrimp work extremely well for targeting black drum in the springtime.
You should rig these shrimp lures up on Saltwater Assassin Pro Elite jigheads for best results.
You always need to make sure you have leader options with you before you head out on the water.
If you have 20-lb and 30-lb leader in your tackle box, you are well prepared for any inshore fishing scenario you may face.
A lighter leader is perfect for targeting redfish or trout but if you are targeting tarpon or snook, you need a heavier leader line to defend against line abrasion.
Additional Items & Tools
You always need a small pair of scissors or line-cutters for tying on new rigs and clipping off the ends of your knots.
In addition, pliers are critical for removing hooks and have other applications as well.
The last item you should have with you is some good old Dr. Juice Saltwater Slam Scent.
We add it to all of our lures before casting out.
The Saltwater Slam Scent is exclusively designed for Salt Strong.
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Great tips Tony!
Great video and information Tony thanks again . Will use to set up my tackle bag.
You’re welcome David!
Tony, love watching your videos. Thanks for this one, will have to make a few additions to my tacklebox soon. Any chance we can get a similar video on a spring fishing checklist for our boats? Much appreciated. – Pete
You’re welcome Pete!
What sort of info are you looking for as far as a boat checklist? Gear for the boat, safety equipment, etc?
Great video and great info Tony..
I got all of this gear for Spring, been stocking up all Winter, now I just hope this gear works in California as well as in places like Florida
Awesome! I’ve used the same lures for saltwater, freshwater, different states, different regions. If it imitates bait the fish will go for it. What it comes down to is proper presentation and being in the feeding zone!
yeah bait/lure presentation and finding the feeding zones is like 99% of the battle I feel, the gear should be pretty simple to be honest.
For sure! It’s always nice to have an idea of what to use though. With so many lure options out there it can get overwhelming. We all tend to overthink it, including myself!
Love it, the KISS theory!
I am getting old sorry. Mangrove snapper in Port A
Richard, I’m down around Port Isabel and for mangrove we always fished pier piping’s and jetties. Right up close to the rocks and piling without losing your rig. Hope it helps!
Thanks! I am all set for saltwater, but I have a question for freshwater. Has anyone tested Dr. Juice Slam for largemouth bass? I will be staying at a lake in Kissimmee, FL, for a week, at the end of the month. I was wondering if I should give it a try, or save it for saltwater?
I haven’t tried it yet but I plan on it next time i’m out. I fished Lake Toho a few weeks ago and they were crushing the slam shady bomber popped on the surface above the grass.
Does anyone have a idea where I might catch in Port Aransas, Tx?
Hey Richard! Be sure to ask any fishing/spot related questions on the community page:
Do you guys recommend any particular fishing reel repair tool kit. I have several fishing reels that intermittently lock and unlock the reverse unwinding of the spool and reel crank handle. Have taken one of these reels apart and cannot tighten a screw that secures a lever behind the spool guard, that appears to be the actuator. Any tutorials on the subject?
Hmm not sure about that one. I don’t take my reels apart anymore as I usually end up making them worse when I do haha. I would suggest asking this question in the community and see if any members with experience on taking reels apart can chime in:
Thanks for the response. Will continue to upgrade my fishing gear as time goes on.