If you are not using Gulp lures to target striped bass you should be. You can catch stripers in most of the local lakes like Lake Norman and some of the coastal rivers such as the Cape Fear River, and Gulp scented soft baits are a top lure option.
Many people know about the effectiveness of Gulp baits on speckled trout and redfish, anglers are just now learning how deadly they can be when used where striped bass prowl. Gulp lures have revolutionized the scented soft bait lure market, and can be perfect when used to target stripers.
Gulp now makes many different varieties of soft baits that anglers use to catch striped bass. If hungry stripers are around it’s hard to beat a 5-inch jerk shad body if you work it right. Choose your jig based on the current but try not to go too heavy, 3/8 ounce is about right. This is the perfect size bait for schoolie-sized stripers and will also catch larger bass.
You want to work the jerk shad high in the water column when you arrive at a likely spot. If you don’t get a hit let it swim lower and keep working it jerk bait-style back to you. Striped bass love the flash and movement of the lure but is the scent that really gets them, so give them a little time to hone in on this bait.
An 8-inch Gulp sandworm or a 10-inch Gulp eel is perfect for crawling along the bottom on a Carolina rig to tempt those lazy winter stripers. The combination of scent and movement as this bait slithers over and around structure will really bring the larger stripers in as they love to feed on big worms, eels, and small snakes.
You don’t want to fish a worm or eel Gulp bait fast at all, but let it lazily crawl back to you with frequent pauses. Stripers love the action as it imitates a real sandworm, sea worm, snake or eel.
If you are on a striper school chasing baitfish throwing a small 3-inch minnow on about a 3/8 or 1/4 ounce jig head is perfect for swimming through the water column. A minnow is a terrific hot water bait that can also be used in a slower mode in winter.
Try to match the speed of the baitfish. The powerful scent in the Gulp minnow disperses and will draw vicious bites from a schooling striper school. Don’t be reluctant to make two or three casts into the same likely drop-off– sometimes it takes a striped bass a pass or two with a Gulp bait before the scent gets them to hit. When larger striped bass are around you can go to a larger Gulp minnow or shad body.
For many more free striped bass articles see the Surf and Salt striped bass page.