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fayegarnett

Bait Suggestions Needed

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Hi everyone, nice to meet all of you. finally got an account. more of an observer in the past and a fan/subscriber of Glenn. decided to ask for help when all research fails and hope you guys can give me some suggestions.

 

i live in st. louis and mostly fish in a nine acre lake in a park. the pond has a lot of weed in the bottom and the deepest part is about 14 feet. i am always able to catch bass there in the summer, but winter so far is zero! every winter, they stock this little pond with 3000 trouts, crazy right? after they did that, the bass seem to have vanished. 

 

i been doing a lot of research on winter fishing, but i just can't seem to find the fish. should i go deep or shallow? what type of search bait should i use? I tried deep diving crank and lipless crank, but the weed completely destroys the actions of the baits. but jigs are very slow and not really good for searching the fish, so are jerkbaits. should i try a slow rolling spinner? or a swim bait since the bass may be feeding on some smaller trouts? it is so frustrating. 

 

Anyways, thank you all and merry xmas to all

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Welcome!

 

Water temps are cold in this part of the country right now. Bass' metabolism is way down so they're moving slowly and only eating very occasionally. Most everything a bass eats right now is moving very slowly as well. Provided the water you're fishing has decent visibility, slowly twitching a suspending jerkbait with long pauses in between twitches should get you a bite. Another bait that I've caught lots of bass in very cold water ponds is a tiny spinner like a Beetle Spin believe it or not. I normally put my own together with a 1/16oz head, a #1 jig spinner arm, and a 2" crappie tube. A nice bonus is that you'll catch trout on it too while you're looking for a bass :)

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Welcome!

 

Water temps are cold in this part of the country right now. Bass' metabolism is way down so they're moving slowly and only eating very occasionally. Most everything a bass eats right now is moving very slowly as well. Provided the water you're fishing has decent visibility, slowly twitching a suspending jerkbait with long pauses in between twitches should get you a bite. Another bait that I've caught lots of bass in very cold water ponds is a tiny spinner like a Beetle Spin believe it or not. I normally put my own together with a 1/16oz head, a #1 jig spinner arm, and a 2" crappie tube. A nice bonus is that you'll catch trout on it too while you're looking for a bass :)

 

Thank you very much for your reply!!! i happen to just have a beetle spin. will give it a try!! the trouts here almost bite anything. the pond is pretty stained so they can't see very well. recently my search for bass has inadvertently produced quite a few trouts. i've been catching them with 10lb test and a large rip bait, unbelievable, right? so i guess when the water's stained, jerkbait is not as productive, right? 

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What faye wrote plus the fact that there is a lot of forage in the pond so they don't have to hit your bait.

 

They are holding deeper now but will come to the sunny side to feed and sun themselves so try the northern and western banks.

 

Jerkbaits are excellent suggestions. Go with a sinking jerkbait to get deeper. You may want to put a Suspend Dot on the jerkbait to go deeper.

 

Think about a Carolina rig.  Throw out as far as you can and drag back to yourself very slowly.

 

Could be hard winter fishing at the pond but keep on experimenting with baits and presentations.

 

Good luck.

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Thank you very much for your reply!!! i happen to just have a beetle spin. will give it a try!! the trouts here almost bite anything. the pond is pretty stained so they can't see very well. recently my search for bass has inadvertently produced quite a few trouts. i've been catching them with 10lb test and a large rip bait, unbelievable, right? so i guess when the water's stained, jerkbait is not as productive, right? 

Jerkbaits will work in stained water, but much better options when you get into muddy water. Jerkbaits are actually one of my favorite baits to fish for trout, all the way up to 5" slender pointers. If you can see your bait about a foot below the surface I'd still have confidence in catching bass on a jerkbait. 

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Welcome as well! 

 

 

When winter rolls around the fish begin to become lethargic, which means to slow everything down... I personally go with a texas rigged rodent dragged on the bottom.  The retrieve usually takes me about 5 minutes to bring it back to my kayak.  My friend who pulls in much bigger fish than I do usually will slowly hop a swim jig on the bottom of the pond.  The bites are much less, but will produce much bigger fish.  Patience is a virtue and you must remember that! 

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How big are the trout being stocked? The bass might be filling up on them, in which case they can afford to be a bit more picky on what they eat. They might also be keying in on trout and things that look "trout like", paying little attention to anything else because they are so focused on this bountiful new food source.

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One thing that works form me is a light Wacky rig setup. I use zoom trick worms. Also,I.am.located in north east Kansas so I understand the cold.

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I have done well in colder water with a silent squarebill. The water around here is not muddy, but it is slightly green stained. I caught my personal best in November on the Xcalibur Silent Squarebill. We actually were pulling ice out of the water so I also understand the cold.

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Welcome aboard.

The hardest part about fishing, especially during cold water periods, is determining the fish's activity level and you can rest assured that the majority of the time it's neutral. I would base my game plan on that assumption and adjust it as needed.  One presentation I rarely see discussed is suspending a small hair jig under a slip bobber.  The bobber stop can be adjusted for depth changes and you can 'work' the jig up and down, or swim it short distances. It's a very similar presentation to a suspended jerkbait, only smaller.

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4" senko or stick-0s should get the job done.  Fish them Texas rigged weightless, with a #3 gama EWG hook, and fish them slow.  Just jerk them every once in a while and let them sit.  Inactive bass will come to investigate.  Great little baits.  Watermelon red, junebug, Morning Glory, Okeechobee are grat colors.  Most bites come while sitting still.

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I feel so welcomed!!! Thank you very much!! I will keep experimenting! The trouts here come in different sizes. The park actually had two separate trucks when they stocked em this year with one with bigger ones (4 to 10lbs!) and another with smaller ones. I don't know if the trouts actually affect what would be a more normal bass pattern in winter. 

 

Anyways, i will keep trying different things you guys suggested. I don't mind slowing down. the problem is i don't know where the fish are. In summer i always catch them around cover, the lily pads. it's such a small pond, i should be able to find em. that's why its so frustrating. 

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How big are the trout being stocked? The bass might be filling up on them, in which case they can afford to be a bit more picky on what they eat. They might also be keying in on trout and things that look "trout like", paying little attention to anything else because they are so focused on this bountiful new food source.

My thoughts exactly.  Depending on the water temps when the trout were stocked the bass may be keying in on them.  As I'm sure you have heard, trout make great bass food.  The parks where I live do the same thing.  Once the fish are stocked, the week after it's a dessert.  You almost have to fish the day of the stock or the week before.  The week after, their full.  Look to see when they are stocked #1, also carry a thermometer with you to check water temps.  If the waters cool, don't worry too much about fishing early, look to fish mid day on the sunny side of the shore where the fish can get up and warm themselves.  Look for wood and fish slow, jigs are a great choice to fish slow.  Think you're fishing slow, slow down.  Fish like you're watching paint dry slow.  Swimbaits may be an option, but tough if you're not geared for it as it can be an expensive technique to get into.  Look for stocking reports when they plant and try to fish before the plants incase the fish are feeding on the trout.  

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You should still probably be able to fish a lipless crank even with it being weedy. You just need to reel faster and try holding your tip up if you have to. Yes water is cold and everything moves slower and fish won't chase. There is truth to that but at the same time it is also not true. Your best option with a lipless is probably really quick pauses or pops or drags. You can cover tons of water and find a active fish. As for locating fish in a 9 acre pond that probably doesn't matter at all. Actually I just located them for you. They are everywhere, literally. What you want to locate is one that wants to bite. Any where you cast there is probably fish within say 15'. If you can't catch them on slower more methodical techs then try to trigger a reaction bite.

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