Spring. Bass Fishing Tips
Towards the end of February in the south, and March up north, it's time to start thinking about hitting the water again. The Super-Bowl is history, your sick of watching re-runs on TV, and Cabin Fever is driving you crazy. When the water temperatures get in the 50s, it's time to go out and kick some bass.
It may seem a bit early, but this is the best time to catch bass while they are in their pre-spawn mode. They've been doing the same thing you have all winter...hanging out and not doing much of anything. They've been living mostly off of stored energy all winter. Spawning takes a lot of effort, so the bass know they have to stoke up for the rigors to come. They will get out of their lethargic mood when the water temperatures get to 53°F (for smallmouth bass) up to 57°F (for largemouth bass), and begin actively feeding. They will move from deeper water (20'-40') into shallower water (5'-15') several times a day looking for high nutrient foods such as crawfish, worms, and other things they don't have to chase or fight much. By learning a few good spring bass fishing tips, this can be the best fishing of the year:
- Bass will move from deeper to shallower water along lines of structure. Look for channels, old river beds, tree lines, rock-piles, and ledges that run from deep to shallow water. These will lead to suitable spawning waters as well.
- Get to know the forage in the lake, or river you will be fishing in. You need to know the average size, and coloration of the food the bass are likely to be eating so you can match your lures to them as close as possible.
- In pre-spawn mode, bass are still a bit slow, so slow-moving lures will produce better this time of year. The all-time best lure for spring bass is a soft plastic worm, crawfish or lizard. Texas-rigged soft plastics have accounted for more bass than any other bait, period....even live bait. There is one secret that is murder on feeding spring bass. When using plastic crawfish, take a hypodermic needle and 'blow' a small bubble of air into each 'claw' so that they float up, in a 'defend' posture. Cast them directly into cover...and hang on.
- One of the best kept secrets of bass fishing is the Jig & Pig combo. Tipping an Arkie jig with a pork-bait can be deadly in spring. But there is one secret to it....only use floating pork baits. The reason is simple, crawfish do not drag their claws along the bottom, especially when threatened. They have them up and defensive, so your pork needs to float up to resemble this posture. When you buy a jar of pork-baits, drop them all in a bowl of freshwater, and only use the ones that float. Use the rest on spinner baits later in the year.
If you really want to bust your bass, take a little time and apply these few spring bass fishing tips to significantly improve your catch-ratio.