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What do you all do to catch fish right after the ice thaws? I usually don't fish for bass at this time, but I want to try this spring. What works for you?

 

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Jerkbaits are my best baits early in the year in cold water. A 65 pointer worked well for me on Tuesday.

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I wait for warm , sunny days and make  parallel cast with    crankbaits at  steep sunny banks in the afternoon exactly like Bobby Murray is doing .   

 

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I caught 3 nice bass on a blade bait today. There was ice on the lake last week. 

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I don’t limit myself to any particular bait. I go through basically the same process I do the rest of the season.  I keep my bait selection small; blade baits. Jig/pig (pork), suspending cranks and jerkbaits. With that handful, I can target any part of the water column and any activity level the fish may be in. 

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Jigs finesse football or a compact casting jig in natural craw colors, jerkbaits and lipless cranks... also throw in a single Colorado blade (gold) spinnerbait for muddy water.

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jerkbait is my go to cold water bait. if that doesn't work I will drag a shakyhead or ned rig around the rocks.  usually have the most consistent action on afternoons fishing rocky banks open to the sun. on the bigger reservoirs I fish the rip rap around bridges.

 

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A Jerkbait, Lipless Crank, Ned Rig, Shad Rap, Wiggle Wart, Drop Shot, Carolina/Mojo rigged Centipede (in that order). Once the water warms up to around 50 a spinnerbait really comes into play as well. Jigs and swimjigs with subtle action trailers can work well too.

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8 hours ago, Captain America said:

Where do you guys find these fish usually?

They can be anywhere. That is why you need a system of eliminating areas where they aren’t. By blindly casting any one bait you’ll only be targeting one part of the water column and even if you luck into the right area, your presentation may be wrong for their activity level.  

Generally speaking, they will gravitate to the warmer water which should be the upper part of the water column. Just after ice out, they will move up from their winter locations rather than toward the shallows, which will occur once there is a steady warming trend. Hope that helps.

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9 hours ago, Captain America said:

Where do you guys find these fish usually?

Steep sunny banks .

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10 hours ago, Captain America said:

Where do you guys find these fish usually?

Deep water with easy access to shallow water, In cold water a bass isn’t gonna use much energy traveling to shallow water or searching for food so steep banks that get a lot of sunlight with rock or wood is always a good place to spend your time. If your lake has a lot of grass fish the edges closest to deep water.

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search with a jerkbait, once you locate the fish i would throw a 3/8oz football jig if they're not eating the jerkbait that is.

 

the other option is to throw a hudd and go a slow as humanly possible once it hits bottom

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Jerkbait.

 

 

:smiley:

A-Jay

 

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