Free Shipping on orders over US$39.99 How to make these links

Berkley Forward Facing Sonar Optimized Baits

Berkley is known for its science-based approach to bait design with products such as Gulp Alive and PowerBait MaxScent shaking up the fishing industry. Now, they’re turning their attention to making Berkley forward facing sonar optimized baits. I was invited out to Houston recently to see the launch of two new baits, plus get out on the water and test them in tandem with FFS technology.

Before we dive in too deep, these baits aren’t solely for use with forward facing sonar. As long as you understand how the baits move, they’re effective in many of the situations you’re already fishing. FFS simply takes them to the next level.

Each bait is designed to stay in the strike zone longer with action that can trigger instinctive strikes even when fish are lethargic. Our time on the water was the day after a cold front ripped through, leaving us with temperatures dropping throughout the day and winds gusting to 40 MPH. It was a day I normally wouldn’t have even bothered putting the boat in the water.

However, we identified sheltered creek areas and found where the fish were holding using forward facing sonar. Once we knew where they were and what depth they were holding, it was time for Berkley forward facing sonar optimized baits to prove their mettle. And that they did. Despite terrible environmental conditions, we triggered strikes and caught fish. Whether you’re trying to find fish that can give you a shot at weigh in, or you’re looking to make the most of your day off, FFS technology and Berkley’s optimized baits give you the tools you need to make the day successful.

Berkley Forward Facing Sonar Optimized Baits

Berkley Krej – New!

Berkley FFS Baits - Krej

The Berkley Krej is a unique forward facing sonar optimized bait. Named by reversing “JerK”, the Krej features a sinking action paired with an upward facing lip. As you twitch the bait, it darts up through the water column rather than down. What seals the deal is that as it drops back down, it sinks away from you and back into the strike zone.

You can even fish this one on the surface. It has a wobbling action on top that’s quieter than a prop bait or popper yet offers an irresistible disturbance to actively feeding fish. With FFS in play, you can work the bait from the bottom all the way to the top of the water column as you see fish react to its presence, similar to the way predators chase bait to the surface before making an explosive strike.

The sink rate on the Krej is lower than the other Berkley FFS baits, so I like it when fish are particularly lethargic. In our area of central Florida, that’s going to be fishing deeper during the hottest summer temps and in the winter when water drops down into the low 60’s.

  • Size: 100mm/3.9-in
  • Weight: 1/2-ounce
  • Colors: 10
  • Price: $14..99

Berkley Finisher – New!

Berkley FFS Baits Finisher

The other new Berkley forward facing sonar optimized bait is the Finisher. It’s a minnow-style bait with a quick sinking action. What’s special about this one is its ability to work a location and stay in it. When you twitch the Finisher using a slack line, it will dart forward, left, right, or even backwards in an erratic motion mimicking a fleeing baitfish. On the rest, it has a shimmy while it falls, giving the bait a constant action through your entire cast.

Paired with FFS, you can casually work the Finisher into the strike zone and then twitch hard when it gets there, acting just like a baitfish that realizes there’s a predator nearby. That finishing move is exactly what you need to trigger bites from otherwise uninterested fish. It worked perfectly in my neighborhood lake. The day after a strong cold front brought the coldest temperatures of the year, I was able to trigger a solid strike on a drop off when I went out to shoot photos of the baits.

The hard twitch isn’t the only move, though. You can work it like a glide bait, a sinking jerk bait, or stroll it, too. The constant action means every movement can potentially trigger a strike.

  • Size: 5, 7, or 9
  • Weight: 1/3, 1/2, 3/4-ounce
  • Colors: 20
  • Price: $8.99 and up

Berkley PowerBait Power Switch

Berkley FFS Baits –  PowerBait Power Switch

The PowerBait Power Switch is a pre-rigged soft plastic. With its forward weighting and optimized tie-on point, it’s a fast-sinking bait yet can fish most of the water column using a variety of retrieval techniques. The name “Switch” comes from the bait’s design that allows you to quickly change retrieval presentations on the fly.

A quick popping action makes the bait dart around in almost any direction, including to the side or away from you. Watching this motion in the tank, it was easy to see how this can be the most effective presentation in generating a reaction strike.

That’s not the only technique, though. You can gently swim it back, work with a less erratic popping action, bounce it off the bottom, yo-yo, vertically jig, or even straight retrieve. Its versatility combined with your ability to quickly get into the strike zone and see how fish react to your presentation on FFS make this a killer option for a variety of species.

Of the three Berkley FFS baits, this is the only single hook option, making a good choice when you’re fishing around structure that like to grab treble hooks. The sink rate is fast, so even in situations where you’re dealing with current, you can get the Power Switch where you want it.

  • Size: 1.75, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4.25, 5 inches
  • Weight: 1/6 – 1 5/8-ounce
  • Colors: 14
  • Price: $7.99 and up