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Novice angler looking for tips on bass habits


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Hello there I am a novice angler wanting to improve my chances of landing my first bass. It's winter right now in my area and I am planning to fish at a nearby lake for 2 days that's said to have a decent large mouth population. We recently got some very warm weather with this being the third day of it being almost 60 degrees. When I go fishing it will be in the 50s to 70s and mostly cloudy. Water levels will also be higher due to weather. I fished the lake from shore before and got skunked and wanted to ask experienced anglers if the high temperature and higher water level will make the bass more active or move to shallower water improving my chances.

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Hi, Astro. Welcome to Bass Resource. If I were you, I'd fish with light line, a worm, and slip bobber. Or light line with a spinner if you want to walk and fish. Warm weather is good. I've also had good luck with high water, but it can get cloudy and bass are sight predators. However, they can feel a spinner and a worm under a bobber will eventually have a bass swimming past it. 

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A ned rig is another good option. It's so cool that you're just starting out. You have so much excitement ahead of you. Where do you live? 

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On 1/25/2024 at 8:13 AM, Astrofishing said:

Hello there I am a novice angler wanting to improve my chances of landing my first bass. It's winter right now in my area and I am planning to fish at a nearby lake for 2 days that's said to have a decent large mouth population. We recently got some very warm weather with this being the third day of it being almost 60 degrees. When I go fishing it will be in the 50s to 70s and mostly cloudy. Water levels will also be higher due to weather. I fished the lake from shore before and got skunked and wanted to ask experienced anglers if the high temperature and higher water level will make the bass more active or move to shallower water improving my chances.

What region of the country are you located and what type of tackle do you use; rod, reel and line?

Tom

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  • 2 weeks later...

When ANY FISH is really hungry ? He will hook himself.

 

IF  IF  

 

You make sure the hook tips / points are in PERFECT shape and condition.

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57 minutes ago, cyclops2 said:

When ANY FISH is really hungry ? He will hook himself.

 

IF  IF  

 

You make sure the hook tips / points are in PERFECT shape and condition.

 

This is so true. In the second half of 2023, I started changing my treble hooks every week or so and my catching percentage improved. I've really stocked up on treble hooks this winter, preparing for 2024. 

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Almost forgot another fast hook duller. Using lures with trebles on lures,  that are used to bump bottom. Really bad on rocky bottoms & boulders.  I no longer fish the bottom with lures. 

I do not do Room Service.

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I recently started using a hook sharpener and I can tell you for sure it makes a huge difference. I don't care how sharp a hook comes from the factory. It's going to get dull pretty quickly and I'd rather sharpen that hook instead of change it!  I do have nice fancy hooks for when I burn out the stock hooks though.

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Location, location, location.  Try to find yourself a spot where some water enters the lake with a bit of current and fish the deeper zone where the waters calms down if you can.  

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The basic annual life cycle for Black Bass including Largemouth is winter the cold water period when bass are less active and in deeper water. When the water starts to warm the bass move up into shallower water becoming more active and feeding getting ready for the Spawn.

Bass Spawn when the water, not air, is about 60 to 70 degrees near wind protected areas making about a 2’-3’ diameter clean bottom spot for a nest visible to anglers.

After Spawn is over bass scatter for the Summer and can be found anywhere from 1’ to 40’ of water. Summer is followed by Fall when the water temps drop approximately below 70 degrees until about 55 degrees when the Winter cold water period starts again to complete the cycle.

You want to fish for bass where they are located. It’s a long journey figuring out all the nuances of Bass behavior....enjoy.

Tom

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Every single time that Tom (@WRB) posts, my eyes flit to this:

 

17.4 & 18.6 Casitas, 17.4, 17.6 & 19.3 Castiac

 

And I think, "Tom doesn't even list  the sixteen, fifteen, fourteen, and thirteen-pounders."

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20 hours ago, ol'crickety said:

 

This is so true. In the second half of 2023, I started changing my treble hooks every week or so and my catching percentage improved. I've really stocked up on treble hooks this winter, preparing for 2024. 

https://www.amazon.com/Luhr-Jensen-Original-Hook-File-Handle/dp/B003KHC9MW/ref=sr_1_5_pp?crid=TF0XQQ5UV6KY&keywords=fishing+hook+file&qid=1707596674&sprefix=fishing+hook+file%2Caps%2C198&sr=8-5

Good file at a fair price. Easy to learn to use, and it'll pay for itself. Give it a shot of WD-40 now and again to prevent rust.

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Cloudy days can be dynamite. Top water is a great technique to use. Get a lure like a Baby or Tiny torpedo. Get a Beetle Spin 1/4 oz. (white and chartreuse) and Rooster Tails 1/4 oz. using a med. rod 6', 6'6" and 7' lengths. Shorter might be better if there are a lot of trees around where you are fishing. Spinning gear is a good way to start. 8lb. test can get the job done for most scenarios. I prefer a fast IPT (30+) spinning reel but not everyone agrees. 

 

You're looking for bites to catch a bass. 

 

Good Fishing

 

Bank Fishing for Bass | The Ultimate Bass Fishing Resource Guide® LLC (bassresource.com)

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The sharp hook discussion probably isn't valuable for someone who has never caught a bass.. definitely read the @roadwarrior thread posted above about fishing a senko. I caught the biggest bass I've ever caught (8lbs) on a knockoff Walmart version of one almost 20 years ago, just flinging it blindly off a dock at my buddies Grandpa's lake House dock. Found out later I dropped it right into a Christmas tree they'd sunk, but I had no idea about that when I cast it. Now I've spent hundreds of hours reading and practicing and thousands of dollars on equipment and still haven't topped that fish. 😂

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Heres something to try . Go to steep rocky banks , if there are any where you are and parallel cast a crankbait. Cast right up the the shore. , drop the rod tip and retrieve agonizingly slow. A  crawfish colored Wiggle Wart is an excellent choice. Banks receiving sunlight are best.

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