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Early Spring Help

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Although the snow has just started to fall, im thinking about spring fishing already.  This past year I had a tough time catching bass in March.  I live in Pennsylvania and March is not to early to fish.  Once April came around I started to catch bass but my question is on early spring fishing.  Before they move up to the shallows what are some good ways to catch them.  I mainly fish ponds during the early spring and I had a hard time getting any bites on a slow prestentation with a soft plastic.  How slow do you guys fish before they come up to spawn or a few weeks after the ice go out?  I was only able to pick up a few bass on a square billed crankbait and need some tips for soft plastics because thats my strong suit.  Thanks for the help

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Just because the water temp is cold doesn't mean you have to fish slow. I like really ripping a Smithwick Rogue or banging a lipless crank off rocks on points that have a gradual taper than a nice steep drop in water less than 50*.

For a slow plastic presentation try a 4" lizard or other small plastic on a super-light c-rig. I mean as light as you can go, I like 1/32 and 1/16 oz. Shallow water wood, stump fields, and parallel docks.

On shallow high-pressured bodies of water when the water is below 60* I will put my boat right up against cement/rock retaining walls that hold back people's waterfront property and burn a Mepps Agila or Comet Minnow along them. They will get right up against these walls b/c they provide warmth and shade. I go with the in-line spinners or small series 1 Strike King cranks so it makes a small splash and it is uncommon up here. Most guys will be chunking a big spinnerbait towards shore and retrieve it back into open water. My way, you are in the strike zone longer, giving them a different looking bait that they never see, and you're not spooking them.

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Rat-L-Traps can be awesome from late winter through the entire spring  ;)

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