Kayak fishing is the fastest growing segment in sportfishing, with more anglers, more clubs and more tournament circuits springing up each year.

Jason Kincy is a prime example. He embraced the sport just a few years ago, and hasn’t looked back. As a member of Arkansas Kayak Anglers, he fishes the organization’s tournament trail, qualified for the 2016 Kayak Bass Fishing National Championship and hosts his own website, aptly entitled Kayak Fishing Focus.

While the advantages of fishing from a craft where your perch is just inches off the water are many, there are challenges, too. One being that storage space is at a premium. Kayak anglers need to be smart and efficient, packing gear and baits that will do the most good during the seasonal period, weather conditions, and on the body of water they intend to fish. Kincy’s Top 5 lures for early-season Arkansas largemouths cover the water column, top to bottom.

1. Squarebill Crankbait

With fish up shallow in April, Kincy says a squarebill crank is hard to beat for locating bass, especially around rocky banks, boulders and timber, where their deflecting lips and buoyant bodies help keep them out of trouble. In 5 feet of water or less, his choices are the Bandit 100 and Bomber Square A.

2. Soft Stickbait

Bass often seek cover while waiting to spawn, or will occupy a bed near cover, especially—docks and timber. A wacky- or Texas-rigged YUM Dinger fished slowly around these areas can entice a good bite. Kincy recommends experimenting with colors this time of year as an unusual shade, such as Bubble Gum Lemon Swirl or Cajun Neon, can often trigger reaction strikes.

3. Carolina Rig

He uses the Carolina to cover large flats where beds may be too deep to be visible, always ensuring that he has a stock of YUM Christie Critter creatures, Wooly Hawgtails and YUM Dingers on board, as well as an assortment of weights. Always use the lightest sinker that will put the soft plastic in the strike zone.

4. Buzzbait

When water temps range from 55 to 65 degrees, Kincy throws a Booyah Buzz in an attempt to trigger reaction strikes from shallow fish. The buzzbait is his choice in stained water where bass don’t have chance to visually lock onto the lure. Vary the retrieve speed until a pattern is established.

5. Walking Bait

In clearer water, when temps reach the 60- to 70-degree range, Kincy reaches for a Zara Spook or Super Spook Jr. walking bait to entice reaction strikes. The key, he says, is to briefly stop the retrieve in critical strike zones near docks and natural cover to allow the fish a quick look at the lure, triggering a more accurate strike.