If you chase late-season bass, you no doubt have one or two go-to baits that outperform all the rest. For Ty Spade, Pennsylvania tournament angler and YUM brand ambassador, this fall’s favorite is the YUM Pulse swimbait, introduced at the Bassmaster Classic earlier this year. The bait is known for its hard-rolling action, but that’s not the only thing he likes about it.
While the angler admits the 4½-inch, solid-body lure’s sick wobble is the perfect action for enticing hungry autumn bass to eat, he says the swimbait’s incredible versatility makes it even more productive.
“The YUM Pulse has pronounced downward grooves along its sides, which gives it an extreme rolling action when you swim it on a weighted or unweighted swimbait hook,” he said. “Plus, the section between the body and paddle tail is narrow and flexible, which allows the tail to thump wildly. The combination is deadly on fall bass.”
Recently Spade has been rigging the YUM Pulse in an entirely different way, using a technique Bassmaster Elite Series angler Ott DeFoe made famous when he won a tournament on the Upper Mississippi River a few weeks ago.
“Sometimes bass, especially smallmouths and spotted bass in moving water, tend to strike short — slapping at a swimbait instead of engulfing it. I took a queue from DeFoe and started Rivet Rigging the YUM Pulse when bass are missing the bait,” he said.
He pushes the collar of a common pop rivet, after removing the nail-stem, through the lure from under the chin and through the nose to create a channel for the line, then ties a split ring connected to an appropriately sized treble hook to the tag end to make a line-through bait that consistently hooks uncooperative fish.
“I use it in rivers, or any time bass seem to be short striking the bait,” he said. “It’s boosted my hook-up rate to 90% or more. Thank you, Ott.”
In the steep-and-deep highland reservoirs Spade fishes, he often has the opportunity to target schooling fish, particularly this time of year, and that’s when the angler’s third variation comes into play. “I love it when bass are busting baitfish on the surface,” he said, “and I break out the YUMbrella Flash Mob when I see it happening.”
Arming the multi-lure rig with high-action YUM Pulse swimbaits gives the entire presentation a frantic look that appeals to excited bass. “I cast it across the baitfish and burn it back just under the surface,” he explained. “The bait scatters, leaving the YUMbrella isolated in open water, and bass come up to smash it. Fishing doesn’t get more exciting.”
There’s more than one way to fish a YUM Pulse, as Ty Spade has proven. Try these techniques yourself this fall; you’ll be glad you did.