Knowing the basics of bass fishing
By Mike Sweeney
Saturday, March 10, 2018
When I write these articles I sometimes get a little too detailed for the beginning angler so this time I am going to talk to the novice bass fisherman for a change.
When we target the largemouth bass there are a lot of details to discuss but I am going to break it down to a few tips in order to help understand the fish and why we love to fish for them so much.
The bass is a predator and that is one of the main things we need to realize.
They strike out of hunger, anger and instinct so your job is to take advantage of this and make the fish bite. Largemouth have a couple of seasons and they are pre-spawn, spawn, post spawn, summer, fall and winter.
Right now we are in a pre-spawn time of year which means they are moving out of the deeper winter waters up onto the flats and feeding heavy before they make more bass.
They like moving baits like crank baits, rattle baits, flukes and spinner baits which resemble shad when the water is warmer but if there is a front that passes through and the skies are bluebird clear you need to slow down and pitch soft plastics and jigs to the wood.
This is because the barometer is on the rise and it affects the bass kind of the way a sinus headache affects us.
It is uncomfortable and you really don’t feel like doing anything but if someone puts a piece of cake right in front of you then you are probably going to eat it.
The barometer is something you need to make yourself familiar with if you want to catch fish all year long.
On the spawn they are on the beds which look like light color circles next to the bank where they lay their eggs.
The male makes the bed and guards the eggs after they are laid by the female.
The male is usually smaller the female but in either way unless you are a tournament angler please try to avoid the spawn in order to help keep the future alive in bass fishing.
Post spawn is one of the hardest times to fish simply because they tend to lay low and just do nothing for a bit to try to recover from the spawn.
If you see the beds then work the outer edges of the area where the deep water is or any structure near that area.
Then slow down with soft plastics or jigs to try to entice them to bite.
Summer time is an easy pattern with top water in the mornings and deep water presentations once the sun gets up.
They come up onto the flats to feed then move back later in the day but watch the weather because if it is cloudy then they tend to stay shallow longer or even all day.
In the fall they move back into the creeks to chase the bait so that is where I like to fish during the fall.
Top water baits like popping baits or buzz baits and Fluke baits are my favorite this time of year.
Fall has lots of action and tons of active fish trying to feed up before the winter.
In the winter it is tough because the largemouth move deep and their metabolism slows way down.
You can catch fish but you have to use slower baits and keep them on the bottom most of the time.
The good news is if you find a fish especially a female, it will be a big fish because it will be full of eggs waiting for the spawn to begin.
If anyone has any questions or would like to get a group of anglers together to talk one day hit me up on Facebook at Fishing with Mike and I will get a class together to help answer any questions you might have.
What’s biting, where...
The fishing report for this week is there was huge winds and flooding rain so there is not any real fishing news out there to report.
The beach is a mess and with 20-plus foot seas nobody got out all week.
With the forcast looking kind of chilly again it may take some slowing down to catch the fish.
The water temps have dropped 10-plus degrees here locally so it will be a little tough to get them to bite.
The striper should still be around and biting but the winds have kept boats tied to the docks and left on the trailers for the past week.
If and when anyone gets out this week shoot me a report even if you get skunked to firstname.lastname@example.org or hit me up on Facebook.