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Hard Fished Lake Bass Smarter?

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I am fortunate to live in a house directly overlooking the mouth of a cove of a 55,000 acre lake and am an avid bass fisherman. The lake is hard fished, particularly in the spring when there are many tournaments. Day after day I see a parade of bass boats enter the cove and fish around the shoreline. Considering myself a student fisherman I observe their technique carefully. Fundamentally there seem to be two or three different approaches. Some fisherman will drive directly to a favorite spot, fish there for a few minutes and then gun off to some different location. The other group will spend hours fishing around the shoreline and docks and exhaustively fish the cove. Still others, far fewer than the other two groups, will go to a spot, usually the point at the cove entry, and just fish there for an hour or more. First question, what is your most productive approach – running to spot to spot or carefully fishing out a larger area?

Second question – These bass must see every lure known to man, many times each day. Are these bass more highly educated and harder to catch than the pond bass that see a fisherman only occasionally? And, are the larger and therefore older bass get still smarter and harder to catch than the young smaller ones? I have buddies that are always bragging about the big catch on their favorite pond while I have to work hard to get a half dozen bass of any size on my hard fished lake.

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55000 acre lake is large , have you ever heard that 90% of the bass are in 10% of the lake ? Do you have electronics for your boat , are there any maps of the lake you are fishing ? Learn your lake and you'll catch the bass , especially the bigger ones with the right techniques. JMHO

Good luck

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Less pressured bass are easier to catch where ever they are located.

Looking at your address; Lake of the Ozarks is a large power generation highland reservior. You may be located in the upper end or upper third where the river enters.

Bass that live near shore located in obvious good looking areas tend to draw a lot of fishing pressure.

During the spring most bass move toward protected coves to spawn, the larger adult size bass then leave high pressured areas or get caught.

Bass are not necessarly smart, they become conditioned to lures, if they don't learn they don't survive.

The points are the first spots and last spot the bass visit entering and leaving the cove. Points are good areas to fish, but everyone knows that.

The river channel under water where the points intersect are better spots. Under water islands called humps near the river channel a also good spots. The areas away from the shore line have less fishing pressure because they are out of sight and most bass fisherman over look anything they can't see.

Search around this site and read articles about structure fishing, the term generally used for the underwater locations.

Good luck.

Tom

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I think that bass over time after being caught get more and more finicky. There's a pond I fish across the street and we can get the little jacks to bite all day. The only way we can catch the big ones is with a live blue gill. Now while fishing the other day something interesting happened. My friend hooked into a blue gill with a bitsy minnow. And just started watching it swim around. Well one of the big bass came up and started teasing the blue gill. It started trying to get the bitsy minnow out of the side of the blue gill's mouth. We watched it as it tried over and over again. Finally another big bass came up and swallowed the blue gill. My friend then spent 5 mins fighting it on a ultra light rod. The bitsy got lodged in the bass' tongue.

It was interesting, ha now every time we go to the pond he tries to catch the big bass with the same method.

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I am fortunate to live in a house directly overlooking the mouth of a cove of a 55,000 acre lake and am an avid bass fisherman. The lake is hard fished, particularly in the spring when there are many tournaments. Day after day I see a parade of bass boats enter the cove and fish around the shoreline. Considering myself a student fisherman I observe their technique carefully. Fundamentally there seem to be two or three different approaches. Some fisherman will drive directly to a favorite spot, fish there for a few minutes and then gun off to some different location. The other group will spend hours fishing around the shoreline and docks and exhaustively fish the cove. Still others, far fewer than the other two groups, will go to a spot, usually the point at the cove entry, and just fish there for an hour or more. First question, what is your most productive approach – running to spot to spot or carefully fishing out a larger area?

Second question – These bass must see every lure known to man, many times each day. Are these bass more highly educated and harder to catch than the pond bass that see a fisherman only occasionally? And, are the larger and therefore older bass get still smarter and harder to catch than the young smaller ones? I have buddies that are always bragging about the big catch on their favorite pond while I have to work hard to get a half dozen bass of any size on my hard fished lake.

Where in the lake are you at? If you say Dogwood or somthing close by you most likely saw me all weekend...Sorry!!!!! If you are closer to nianuga/little nianuga I *** you a bit...great part of the lake. PM if you want any detailed info on your lake and I would be happy to give waypoints and specifics. As far as fish conditioning, lots of different lines on that, but yes, they do become conditioned but are catchable.

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They definitely get conditioned. Try something different from what you consider the "standard" approach. Even if that means the same bait fished in an entirely different way.

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55000 acre lake is large , have you ever heard that 90% of the bass are in 10% of the lake ? Do you have electronics for your boat , are there any maps of the lake you are fishing ? Learn your lake and you'll catch the bass , especially the bigger ones with the right techniques. JMHO

Good luck

“Humble” cannot be declared by the writer, it's something that's decided by the reader.

Roger

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“Humble” cannot be declared by the writer, it's something that's decided by the reader.

Roger

Thanks Roger , I'll remember that. :)

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TIME SPENT AT ONE LOCATIONSome guys will fish a spot as you stated as they know the fish will be there and either get a fast bite or know they have to fish the location long and hard to get bit.

EDUCATION OF A BASSLau studied bass and he and Uncle Homer Circle say that they have seen the big ladies hide when they heard a trolling motor. So it is more of a conditioned response than a thinking response.

I have done all three fishing methods at one location or along a bank so it depends on my mind set the day I am fishing and if I want to stay in one spot or just check it out before heading to another, more productive, location.

Great question. :)

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Approach can be vitally important. Drift into the area you want to fish if possible. Do shut off all electronics (which bass become more familiar with than lures!).

Also, don't forget to look AWAY from the bank. There could be a deeper break or off-shore hump, that's loaded with big bass that never see a bait!

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Like has already been said... Not really smarter, just more conditioned. And these are the kind of fish I like to bfish for. The harder they are for most people to catch, the greater the chances they will end up getting really big. Then, since I often fish differently than just about anybody else out there, this gives me a big advantage.

Peace,

Fish

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Approach can be vitally important. Drift into the area you want to fish if possible. Do shut off all electronics (which bass become more familiar with than lures!).

Also, don't forget to look AWAY from the bank. There could be a deeper break or off-shore hump, that's loaded with big bass that never see a bait!

i never would have thought that. kinda makes sense given their sensitive receptor qualities.

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It's hard to consider a high land classification lake with 55,000 acres as being high pressured by bass anglers.

If you have 100 boat turnaments every day, 365 days a year, there will be areas the bass never see a lure. The areas that are local fishing holes, those bass get pressured and see the same lures and get conditioned to avoid those.

Consider lake Castiac located near Los Angeles; 2,230 surface acres, the banks are steep, the lake is deep and shoreline has very little cover. Castiac has weekly bass tournaments year around and night tournaments during the summer months, plus out of state and recreational bass anglers are fishing every day of the year...that is a high pressured lake.

I suggest that you Google Western Bass magazine, it's free on line and read some of the outstanding articals. I also recommend reading Don Iovino's book Finesse Bass Fishing and the Sonar connection.

Most of all, get out on the water and go bass fishing, learning to fish is a life long lesson.

Good luck.

Tom

PS; this site has a ton of good info on structure fishing and finesse fishing, both are important to catching bass other anglers have pressured.

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Thanks Roger , I'll remember that. :)

Should have said the H was from Honest. :lol:

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I saw your from Camdenton, when I was down in missouri I stayed in Clinton and was a mile from Harry S Truman reservior! I bought my bass boat from a guy who lived in Collin's missouri! I *** you southern guy's who get to fish almost year round!!! :angry: Know where I can get a job down there?????? Junebugman P.S. I miss the "golden corral's" !

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I saw your from Camdenton, when I was down in missouri I stayed in Clinton and was a mile from Harry S Truman reservior! I bought my bass boat from a guy who lived in Collin's missouri! I *** you southern guy's who get to fish almost year round!!! :angry: Know where I can get a job down there?????? Junebugman P.S. I miss the "golden corral's" !

Yeh, spring fishing is nice here and starts in April for good. Of course I'm jealous of my friends further south who can fish in the winter. This year the lake froze over bank to bank for a few days. I'll have a Golden Corral steak in your honor. Jobs are hard to come by everywhere.

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