Jump to content
pcakes55

Prevailing Winds & Water Temp

Recommended Posts

Interesting question about water temp and prevailing winds ("a wind from the direction that is predominant at a particular place or season" fyi). I understand during a warming trend, that a prevailing wind will push warmer water into the shoreline/pockets facing that wind direction. 

 

My question is, what happens during a a cold front? Does the wind push colder surface water to the same shoreline? Or is it still warm water?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Depends on the severity of the cold front and the strength of winds. There is a natural cycle of heating and cooling of surface waters every day commonly, this being night and day. If the cold front wasn't severe, surface temps might not drop much from this normal variation. Under a severe front, surface water temps could cool considerably..I've seen 5-8 degree differences over a period of a couple days. But it's not as straightforward as warming waters, because cooling water tends to sink and mix in with waters below it, whereas warming waters tend to float on the surface, making them more easily "pushed around" and more likely to eventually stack o on the downwind side of things. Also, prevailing winds after a front tend to be out of the NW/N/NE, so different pockets or areas would be affected when compared to the more southerly flows of warm air. More commonly what you'll see under a severe cold front is the shallow bays and back ends of coves cool the most, and are the most affected regardless of winds, whereas the main lake shallows that are located closer to the deeper water, and subsequently the larger mass of thermal heat, don't cool as much or as quick, and also rebound faster. Of course, there can be great variation in all of this depending on specific waterbody (ponds vs lakes vs reservoirs vs rivers vs Great Lakes, etc.). And to complicate things even more, current, either natural or man-made can totally mask or negate much of this effect.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Prevailing wind direction is specific to each individual body of water do in part to the terrain and region.

High or strong sustained winds do mix the water column by creating upwelling currents that bring cooler deeper water to the surface and can turn a lake over if strong enough.

Check the surface water temps in the morning before the sun warms the top few inches of water for a more accurate temperatures.

Tom

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Team9nine nailed it ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ask a simple question... :)

 

Nicely done, Brian.

 

In general, water is stingy with heat, heating and cooling slowly. It takes a lot to make much of a change. 

 

Only thing I'll add is what WRB brought up: Seiches/upwellings. When wind blows surface water to one side, water must replace that and it often comes from the layer beneath. If that layer of water is colder, like from deep water, or early in the season, the upwind side can drop in temperature very quickly.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LMB have a low tolerance to water temperature changes, 10 degrees in 24 hours can be fatal. If the water column is dropping the bass move to more comfortable water if possible.

Cold fronts bring clouds and low light conditions with possible rain during summer months. Severe fronts associated with storms impact fisheries from ice in the form of hail and torrents of rain along with high wind velocity, these are abnormal weather conditions.

My advice is fish deeper structure during post cold frontal conditions that bring wind and clearing bright sun, those bass are less affected by adverse weather conditions.

I mentioned wind direction is specific to each lake based on where I fish. Lake Casitas is a coastal lake with predominate wind being 5-10 mph SW. Lake Castaic is about 50 miles away, further inland and the predominate wind is 15-30 mph NE, opposite of Casitas. California has coastal, Sierra Nevada and High Sierra mountain ranges that stair steps in altitude from less than 3,000' to over 12,000' each creating their own climates and bass lakes tend to be located at the base of each range. 

Bottom line is weather is a very important factor to consider when determining bass location.

Tom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the east, wind direction can have little effect on many lakes do to the size and island placement. Anglers not comfortable on lakes like my home lake (Squam) will waste a lot of time before figuring it out.

For these reasons the lake temp doesn't vary much and craw is the meal dejour.

 

Structure is far more important and understanding the reefs are invaluable 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • fishing

    fishing forum

    fishing rods

    fishing reels

    fishing

    bass fish

    fish for bass
    fish

×