Spring is a great time to pick up a crankbait and work it through the grass and lily pads before they get too thick. I recently re-read an article I wrote for FLW Bass magazine where I interviewed Ohio tournament angler Curt Fiessinger about cranking nonemergent grass and lily pads. Fiessinger had used the technique to target pre-spawn largemouth en route to winning the Buckeye BFL on Indian Lake in April of 2012, and he shared some great tips for this technique. Take a look at page 9 of the PDF (page 116 of the magazine):
Having recently used this technique, I have two additional notes for improving its effectiveness.
First, if you cut the hook that faces the front of the bait off of each treble hook, your bait will come through the pads and grass much cleaner than if you don’t make any hook modifications. As to whether you’ll lose more fish without all the hooks intact, the answer is probably yes. But losing a fish or two is a small price to pay for getting more bites.
Second, ditch your standard crankbait rod for something a little heavier. A medium graphite or glass rod won’t give you the backbone you need to rip the crankbait out of the pads and grass as it gets hung up. Again, you might lose a fish or two with the heavier rod, but you’ll get more reaction strikes as the bait slingshots free from snags.