Clear Water Smallmouths
Smallmouth bass are found in the northern reaches since they prefer cool, clear water. Since these hard fighting fish require a strong line to bring them to the boat, you can't go too heavy since their keen eyesight will pick up on thick lines. There is a solution to this problem thanks to a modern fluorocarbon fishing lines.
Low Visability Lines Mean More Strikes
Fluorocarbon lines are unique in that they refract light rays and don't reflect them like most monofilament lines do. This means a line that is less visible to wary bass and more strikes for anglers that use this type of line. Eight pound test is a good all around strength for smallmouths since they are found in open water areas most of the time, but be willing to go to 10 or 12 pound in a river situation where logs or stumps can break you off.
Largemouths like Weeds
While largemouth bass can be found in the same waters as their cousin the smallmouth, they often are found in different parts of the lake. Largemouths prefer thick weed beds or lily pads since they prefer to hide from their prey and pounce from the heavy cover when it's time to eat. Since weeds can chew up most lines, it is a good idea to look at braided lines for these situations.
Braided Lines for Heavy Cover
Braided lines, or super lines as they are often called, are strands of thin strands wound together to form a line that has very low stretch with a thin diameter. Professional bass fisherman often use 40 to 50 pound test braided line when fishing largemouths in the heavy weeds of summer. The power of these lines is enough to wrestle big fish without sacrificing strikes since these braids have the diameter of 10 pound monofilament. These high-strength, low-diameter lines will help you land more bass this season.
The Right Line for the Job
While there is no one "perfect" line to match every situation you may run into on a lake, there are a multitude of lines on the market that will work well for most weekend anglers. Be sure to match a line that suits the type of lake or river you plan to fish for bass; lighter lines for open, clear water and heavier lines for lakes filled with thick mats of weeds. Once you have the proper line, you be ready to catch America's favorite fish.