Re: Matching the hatch.
I'm fairly new to striper fishing. What worked for me this past season was just due to a tiny bit of knowledge of what the bass like to eat, and then a lot of observation while I was fishing. I was told that they really go for eels where I fished, so that's where I started. Started to catch some on some eel-like lures. Then the elvers hatched. They were everywhere- an easy meal, so I switched to something more like them. Then I noticed some shad swimming around- I didn't even know they existed where I was- so I started throwing some soft shad lures in there too. One day I notice all this commotion in the water, at first I thought it was a striper thrashing an eel, but then I see it's some tiny fish with an elver in it's mouth. The action of it was a lot like a Rat-L-Trap, so I started throwing those.
I guess it's just getting some info from the guys on the forum in your area, or local bait shops about what works, and then experimenting and adding to that from the bait fish and action you see when you're out there. And if you catch one that you're keeping, checking the stomach contents for what they're currently feeding on can't hurt.