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roadwarrior

Big Or Small For Winter Largemouth?

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Which do you prefer for winter fishing,

a big or small presentation?

8-)

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Well i only caught one winter fish so far and it was on a ole monster worm..so i'm gonna go with big. :P

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I'll be the first to say post so I would go big first of all.  An 8" huddleston trout swimbait would be my first choice.  If a cold front has passed through then I'll downsize to smaller lures, but a swimbait is usually what I would throw.

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From what i've read in magazine's and seen on tv and video tape's  the large mouth gets lathargic in colder water and when he does expend energy to feed he needs to make the most of it because his matabolism is slow and it takes longer for him to digest what he eats. So im gonna say it medium to large forage is what he is gonna feed on and you should fish it slow very slow cause he aint gonna use up a lot of energy chasing food down to eat it needs to be in his face!

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I decided early on to go big this winter, and so I haven't fished with small lures at all this winter. Because of this, I honestly can't say whether big or small is better for me this year because I haven't fished with anything small.

With that being said, I've had good luck going large this winter and I'm not planning on changing anything up.

So my opinion, and completely biased as it may be, is that large baits have produced well for me THIS WINTER.

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Big. Caught this guy day before yesterday on a 10.5" ol monster worm.

post-12186-130162888538_thumb.jpg

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Big. In Winter, Location is the ticket. A Bass is lethargic, So he doesn't want to burn what energy he has left chasing a lure.

Big and slow is the ticket. The bigger the lure, the more likely it'll be put closer to the fish and he'll see it better. A bass might think it's not worth it to spend time consuming a big meal but on the other hand, He'll have to eat less from there on out. He has a lower metab and having a fuller stomach we'll make the wait to spring that much more barable.

I mean, think about us here in America: Why do we love fast food so much? Is it more appealing at first, For smaller, expensive, and healthier portions or Convient, Filling (fattening), and Cheap food?

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I know everybody's gonna say big, and that does make sense, but for me, I have still caught way more bass going small in the winter. I also made a pact with myself to go big this winter to see if that stat changes. Jury's still out.

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Big largemouth are regularly caught through the ice here on 10" baitfish under a tip up meant for a pike, and micro size jigs meant for bluegills, and lots of stuff in-between. They are still opportunistic feeders, put what you have confidence in in-front of them and see what happens.

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Big. Caught this guy day before yesterday on a 10.5" ol monster worm.

Dwight - first, VERY nice fish - second, give us a break, you're still in Florida...when you see some ice on your water, check back in !!!! ;D

On RWs question - I've read that bass in cold water will go after large prey so it's worth the effort expended...I've also read that bass will go after smaller, more readily digestible prey... so what to do?

When the water temp went below 45 I started off big with 10" worms - nothing, went down to 7" worms - nothing, tried larger jigs - nothing, tried a 4" Berkley Crazy Legs Chigger Craw - nothing, tried a little SK Bitsy Flip jig with a small trailer - some taps but no fish. Finally, tried a 3" Zoom Ultravibe Speed Craw - bingo. Got a little 13" fish in 40deg water on New Years Eve, and got a nice 20", 3.76lb fish on New Years day in 45deg water. Water here has been either in the mid-30 temps or hard since New Year day so no fish since then.

Not a very big sample size or test...but I think I will stay small the rest of the winter until water temps are above 45 again. ::P

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In the winter I always go big first, and only when I can't get a bite at all I'll go to something smaller. 

During the winter, BIG jigs with ragetail lobsters are usually my best bet.  When that doesn't work, I'll go to something small on a drop shot.  one extreme to another... :P

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From what i have experienced, big or small is good. my avg size went up when i went big in the winter but then again my PB was on a small finesse worm in the late winter. They key is to SLOWWWWW Downnnnnn IMHO. having low speed reels or spinning reels helps with this also bottom lures such as soft plastics or jigs are the way to go...in my opinion. not to say you cant go out and catch a bunch on Rat-l -traps. ive tried but 98% of my winter fish have been on Jigs or soft plastics and i try to average on full crank of the reel every 30 seconds or longer.

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Winter season is very subjective depending on where you live.

Although most have said large prey, I would disagree. Granted, I do not fish much in the winter, but from what I know of fish and biology they prefer a smaller, slower, easier to catch and digest meal in the colder temps. In extreme cold their metabolism slows way down to an almost hibernating state and they need very little food spread out over a longer time period to survive. Even the process of digestion consumes calories. In colder temps, I believe a bass would prefer a smaller meal to keep in a natural state of comfort. Many fish species survive in super cold water by consuming diatoms and other micro-organisms. This is seen in polar fish species and fish living at extreme depths where water temps are much colder. There is larger prey available, but rarely if ever consumed.

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Which do you prefer for winter fishing,

a big or small presentation?

8-)

That depends. Do you consider a 1/2 oz. Hopkins Shorty spoon big or small?

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Which do you prefer for winter fishing,

a big or small presentation?

8-)

I don't know yet. All of my baits land on top of the water and stay there  :P

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Big jigs, big craw worms, big worms & big creatures fished slowly

Big spinner baits fished slowly

Big Rat-L-Traps fished fast! And yea they will burn the energy to chase it down!

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I like shad sized stuff in this neck of the woods, 3-4" flutter spoons, 110 McSticks.

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Winter season is very subjective depending on where you live. Although most have said large prey, I would disagree. Granted, I do not fish much in the winter, but from what I know of fish and biology they prefer a smaller, slower, easier to catch and digest meal in the colder temps. In extreme cold their metabolism slows way down to an almost hibernating state and they need very little food spread out over a longer time period to survive. Even the process of digestion consumes calories. In colder temps, I believe a bass would prefer a smaller meal to keep in a natural state of comfort. Many fish species survive in super cold water by consuming diatoms and other micro-organisms. This is seen in polar fish species and fish living at extreme depths where water temps are much colder. There is larger prey available, but rarely if ever consumed.

For sure. RW hasn't checked back in to this thread yet so he hasn't given us an idea of what he meant by "winter largemouth." Since he's a fellow Tennesseean (although he lives down the hill from me) I was assuming he meant water temps in the 40s or lower. Others on this thread are talking about 50, or even 60 degree water ... or even hard water! BIG difference !

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I thought winter was for smallmouth?

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Dwight - first, VERY nice fish - second, give us a break, you're still in Florida...when you see some ice on your water, check back in !!!!   

Hey goose,

The only ice I'm going to see on my water will be in my glass  :P

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Dwight - first, VERY nice fish - second, give us a break, you're still in Florida...when you see some ice on your water, check back in !!!!

Hey goose,

The only ice I'm going to see on my water will be in my glass :P

Enjoy!  Looks like you're having some great fishing!!

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One size doesn't fit all in bass fishing, even in cold water.  Beyond the local climate, some days can be a big bait day and others will be a small bait day. Lot's of other factors help determine the the best approach to take on a particular day. Those who are locked in to one size bait may be missing out.  Speed is quite a bit more important to me in cold water than size, and food souces and depth usually trump speed. Some would say that it's not how big it is, it's how you use it. :P

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One size doesn't fit all in bass fishing, even in cold water.  Beyond the local climate, some days can be a big bait day and others will be a small bait day. Lot's of other factors help determine the the best approach to take on a particular day. Those who are locked in to one size bait may be missing out. 

Finally...I figured someone had to say it. I am with Nick on this one.

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