A lot of people ask me for a nice pond search bait. Of course, really small spinnerbaits (like the old Beetle Spin) are pretty nice as a search lure, but they are a bit hard to throw on baitcasting gear. For someone like me, with only a nice baitcasting setup and combo and a cheap spinning combo, I prefer to use my baitcaster whenever possible, and I think that's the case with many bankbeaters - the less you carry, the better.
Above: For the price of this cheap crank, you can get a whole bag of small swimbaits.
Pond bass, although usually unpressured, can be wary in their own way. They aren't used to having giant squarebills buzzing past their faces. Ponds are often small, and if you do something stupid, you might spook all the fish in the pond. Pond fish can be very picky eaters, eating only what's in their pond - I had fish turn down my friend's brightly colored chartreuse swimbait but eat my greenish brown swimbait. There are also no shad in the pond - shad for for reservoirs and lakes. There also aren't too many minnow species in small ponds, or much baby catfish. You do, though, have a lot of bluegill.
Above: A comparison of the two.
Bluegill are the dominate forage in small ponds, and they literally take over the ponds in the summer. Small bluegill are extremely common. When it comes down to matching the fish forage in the ponds with a budget in mind, I think that small swimbaits are better. Intricately painting a crankbait, which is already expensive, isn't cheap, and you won't get a good imitation of a bluegill under $8.
When you consider how dense pond growth can be, losing a $8 crank every other cast isn't cheap. Many swimbaits can be texas rigged, which makes them weedless. Swimbaits also come in bags vs a single lure, and are much cheaper than a crankbait.
Swimbaits also can be jigged over cover, and are better finesse wise. However, sometimes the stronger wobble and ratters of the crank bait can get bass to strike in greater numbers.
Hi. I am Ian, an extremely avid bass fisherman living in Howard County, MD. I like to bank fish and fish at local ponds and small creeks. I will explore budget friendly options for people to use in this blog. I hope I can teach you something.