Sneaking up on
bass on public lakes is getting harder, fishermen are smarter and at
times it seems the fish are also. The old days of having a "Honey
Hole" all to your self is just a memory. If you catch fish from a
brush pile hidden in a secret cove more than once, I will bet Aunt
Vellam's tomatoes on the third trip there you will find someone
sitting on it.
Bass become very conditioned to boat traffic, noise and lures. They
know you are there and become very hard to catch, often retreating
into thick cover. Don't just charge into an area you plan to fish;
study the map before hand and then try to enter the area as quite as
possible. Slamming lids or splashing the trolling motor down alerts
the bass that you are there. Bass fishing is like hunting, those who
amble around in the woods get a deer once in a while, but to be
consistent time after time requires being sneaky.
By stopping some distance from the target area and then fishing up
to it cuts boat noise down and the fish are less spooky. Run the
trolling motor on low, the fast turning blade moves a lot of water
and could alert the bass. When possible, allow the wind to drift
your boat into the fishing area, this will give you the most silent
entry. Try to refrain from rocking the ship (boat) as the waves
caused by a boat rocking to an Fro will disturb tree limbs hanging
in the water or splash against the shore, alerting the bass of
Using an under handed cast keeps movement to a minimal and allows
the lure to enter the water at a low angle, causing less splash
and/or noise. On bright sunny days an over handed cast will cause a
shadow to dance across the water, often spooking active bass.
Fishing a lure that the fish don't see very often and increase your
chance of catching that bass. If you hear that everyone has been
catching bass on a white spinner bait with gold blades; try casting
a crankbait. By changing the hooks that come on most crank baits to
a size larger will increase bass catching, by using short shank
hooks that curve inward you will have fewer hang-ups in wood.
In some areas of a lake bass have become so used to people noise
that you can use that as an advantage. These fish get excited by
noise, an area where skiers are, people jumbling into and out of the
water can hold a surprisingly lot of bass. When everyone else is
looking for quieter water, try the active areas, around marinas and
On windy days you need not be as cautious as on calm windless days.
But even with wind blowing into a pocket a quite entry can add a few
more bass to your numbers. On windy days deer will become more
nervous as they lose the use of their hearing and sense of smell;
Bass being a predator use the wind to
help confuse the pry and will feed heavy in shallow water if the
water temperature is higher than 55 degrees.
Fish often, catch all you want; keep just what you need, and release
the rest for the future.