Bass Fishing Tips, Strategies & Techniques

Bass Fishing Tips, Strategies & Techniques
Bass are one of the most highly prized game fish in the United States. The fighting spirit a bass displays on the end of a fishing line makes it an exciting opponent. Bass anglers know certain lures work better in shallow water, and that bass gravitate to certain places in a river. The experienced bass fisherman also knows how to catch bass in thick vegetation.

Buzzbait Tips

One lure bass anglers rely on when fishing shallow waters is the buzzbait. Fishing these lures on top of the water makes them work correctly. Reeling in the lure turns the blades on it, chopping up the water and creating a commotion the bass below will see.

Survey a lake or pond and choose a spot where a buzzbait might catch fish. Look for shallow and weedy areas with enough open spaces between the weeds to retrieve the lure. After casting the buzzbait, close the bail on your spinning reel before the lure hits the surface. The key to keeping a buzzbait on the top of the water is to start reeling the instant it lands, with the tip of the rod straight up. The lure's action will enable it to move through and over weeds, where bass wait in hot weather using the weeds for shade. Most strikes on a buzzbait occur in the first few seconds it's in motion; prepare for this possibility and set the hook hard when they feel or witness the bite.

Smallmouth Strategy

One strategy smallmouth bass anglers use in a river is to fish according to how the current flows. Anglers will typically find smallmouth bass where the current is flowing in the shallower portions. In deeper water, look for smallmouth where the current is exceptionally slow or nonexistent. In moderate to swift current, fish where there are current breaks. Boulders, logs, points on the shore that project into the river and bridge pilings all provide relief from the current for a bass. These spots will hold smallmouths, particularly when the water rises because of rain and the current strengthens. In the summer, smallmouth fishermen search for slow current in the parts of a river where trees or bushes along the bank afford shade from the sun. Anglers realize smallmouths face upstream and watch for food to come to them. Cast from upstream and let the lure or bait come to the fish.

Texas Rig Technique

When presented with a very weedy body of water, a bass fisherman will turn to the Texas rig technique with a plastic worm. Stick an offset worm hook into the top of a plastic worm, force the point out less than an inch from where it entered, and turn the hook to have it facing the worm. By driving the hook into the body and leaving it there, the worm becomes a weed-less lure that anglers will use to fish the dense growth where bass hide. This technique requires patience. The worm drops down after you cast it, helped toward the bottom by a bullet weight tied in front of the hook. Many times a bass will hit this presentation as it descends, so watch the line for any strange movement. Once the Texas rig makes it all the way down, lift it up slowly by slightly lifting the rod tip before letting it quiver downward. If you feel a strike or see the line moving, set the hook and try to fight the fish through the weeds. Having a reel spooled with braided line makes this task considerably easier--it has superior strength.

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