How To Catch Largemouth Bass
It is often claimed that the largemouth bass is the most popular game fish in the country. They are definitely among the most targeted by tubers and tooners. That’s probably because largemouths are at home in many small ponds and lakes that are ideal for floatation fishing. More books and articles are written on “bassology” than on any other fish. No need for a tutorial on basic bass fishing here. Let’s keep it simple. Bass are ideal targets from tubes and toons because they are often live in water not easily accessible to other anglers in boats or on the shoreline. Floatation craft can sneak in quietly, work over the secluded fish and sneak back out without disturbing the whole area.
You can fish for largies from tubes and toons using any of the tried and true tackle and methods. Some of them actually work better than from the bank or a boat, simply because you can get more “up close and personal” with the fish without alarming them. What’s more is that floatation fishing, using fins, is “hands-free” fishing. You can concentrate on catching the fish rather than on controlling a boat. As will be covered more thoroughly in the chapter on Tackle and Techniques, there are some kinds of bass fishing that are better from a tube and others that are better from a pontoon. For example, flipping and pitching are best done from the higher position and visibility afforded by casting from a pontoon. But plain old donuts have worked for years at chunkin’ a wide variety of baits and lures for “greenfish” on just about every kind of water imaginable.
Largemouth Bass are one of the commonly sought after fresh water fish in the United States and other neighboring countries. Angling for this fish can be fun and especially because it offers one of the toughest challenges to any fisherman seeking to have a catch. Largemouth bass also has the capacity to grow big reaching up to 20lbs. You do not require expensive or fancy gear to catch this fish species. During the spring season, largemouth can be found in shallower waters and especially because this is the spawning season for the fish.
With the drop of temperatures, the fish can be easily caught in shallow waters as they cruise around looking for food. However, the best time to catch Largemouth is during the hotter summer seasons when the water is above 70 degrees and especially at night when there is a mass movement of the fish in shallow waters. Catching largemouth bass during this same season is also possible but you have to venture deep into the waters where they like spending their day.
Largemouth bass fishing can be done using different equipments based on your fishing plan. Some of the most expensive fishing excursions are done from bass boats but if you do not have the kind of money that will give you a boat, then you can use reels and rods which come in different sizes and styles. The bass rod of choice should however provide sensitive tips and a sturdy butt to handle the weight of the fish.
Fishing for largemouth bass can also be done using artificial lures and baits such as plastic worms which are easily inhaled by the fish thus making them suitable for a quick catch. Crank and spinner baits are also a suitable choice but you should look for ones with color, action and flash as these easily entice the fish to strike thus giving you a chance to make a catch. Swim-baits, drop shotting and senkos are also ideal when fishing for largemouth bass.
Largemouth black bass were introduced in Utah Lake about 1890…along with severalsunfish species. They found the lake to their liking and soon developed a healthy population. In the days before competition from other predators…like the catfish and walleyes introduced in later years…largies became the top of the food chain and grew to hefty sizes. Pictures from that era show fish that appear to be at least 8 to 10 pounds.
During the century plus that largemouths have been in Utah Lake they have endured many changes in the water levels, water quality and the overall ecosystem. Through it all they have managed to maintain a viable population. During years of high water and abundant food resources they spawn well and have good recruitment. During low water years they have trouble finding suitable spawning habitat and numbers decline.
In recent years there have been a growing number of bass fanatics who invest the time, money and effort to learn the habits and habitat of Utah Lake’s bass population. The truly dedicated and more successful bassaholics are understandably reluctant to broadcast their findings or to share all their secrets.
Utah Lake is a big lake, but there are relatively few areas in which an angler can expect any degree of success with largies on any given day. And even the “pros” still smell like skunk on some trips. Knowing where the fish are…or just finding them…is never a guarantee that you can catch them. That’s one of the things that make largemouth bass so appealing and/or frustrating to so many anglers. Catching them requires both art and science…along with good timing and a lot of luck.
I used to fish for largies in Utah Lake a lot more than I have the past few years. I always enjoy hunting for them and being rewarded with a “greenie” on the end of my line. They are tough to find and catch in this pond so each one is a special accomplishment.
WHERE TO FIND ‘EM
Largemouth bass are very structure oriented. They are not happy unless they have something under which to hide or against which they can snuggle. They are ambush feeders. They also like points and drop-offs next to deep water…where they can retreat when conditions are not to their liking. Utah Lake does not have a lot of classic bass structure and it is pretty shallow throughout the entire lake. But, there are enough reeds, weeds, docks and rocks to sustain a fairly good population of largies.
A high percentage of all LMB caught from Utah Lake are caught in and around the various harbors and backwaters on the lake. Many are hooked beneath docks or along rocky dikes inside the harbors. Still others are caught around small growths of reeds or willows along mud shorelines both inside and outside these enclosed waters. If you spend the time prospecting and fishing all around the edges of all the harbors you will learn the places where there are underwater break lines, rocks and brush that hold bass at times. And once you know the prime locations you can hit them systematically on each trip without wasting a lot of time in additional prospecting. Over time, most of your fish will come from the same proven spots. C&R anglers often catch the same fish multiple times.
The “top secret spot” best known to many serious bass chasers is inside the Saratoga Harbor. This is a private harbor and you cannot launch or fish there unless you are a resident of Saratoga. However, you can come inside the harbor by boat…from the outside lake…and you can fish all around the harbor…as long as you do not dock your boat or step onto the private property. The big attraction for bass in this harbor is the warm water inflow from thermal springs. During the cold months of the year this warmer water inside attracts all species from the main lake…and especially largemouth bass. But they get worked over a lot and can be pretty tough to fool in the warm clear waters there.
There are other warm springs coming up into the lake just northeast of the harbor. And these springs also hold largemouths at times. The problem is that this area is open to the public and it gets heavily fished by the “happy harvesters” who keep everything they catch.
You can sometimes find the occasional largie around the outside rocks on the dikes of the different harbors around the lake. Anglers who soak baits or cast lures along the dikes for white bass, catfish or walleyes sometimes find themselves attached to a “green fish”. But they are much scarcer than in the protected waters inside the harbors.
Since Utah Lake water levels came back up after the big drought early in this century there has been an explosion of reeds and other aquatic growth around much of the lake. This has made access more difficult for shore bound anglers but it has vastly increased the amount of structure and nursery habitat for largemouths and other species. Lots of bass have readily moved into “condos” in and around the shoreline greenery. There are more bass in the lake right now but they are spread out and more difficult to find and to catch. But there are plenty of little hidey holes with bass in them.
If you make a complete circuit of the shoreline around Utah Lake you will discover numerous spots where small inlets or canals enter the lake. You will also find old pumping stations…some out on pilings and others inside short dugout channels. All of these anomalies to the “normal” shoreline create potential bass-holding structure. Taking the time to explore them during different weather and water conditions can add a few worthy
waypoints on your GPS.
Bass fishing is really an exciting sport; you should be equipped with the proper mentality, a lot of patience, and information to be good at this sport. Here are some of the points that you should know before venturing out. Float tube fishing for bass is always an effective activity.
- Water depth– In every body of water there exist a certain layer that fishes tend to stay. They are known as surface layer, middle layer, and deep layer. It is important that you’re familiar with this because bass fish tend to be in the cooler part of the water. So I suggest using a thermometer.
- Water Clarity- most bass fish can live well in clear and murky water. This fish tend to stay in the deepest part of the water most of the time. They only surface when they feed and reproduce.
- Water vibration and noise disturbance- This fish are very sensitive to vibrations and noises present in the water. They get easily scared when the water is disturbed.
- The perfect time of the day to catch them- Some professional anglers believe that dawn and dusk are the most perfect time to catch this fishes for the temperature of the water is low. This is also the perfect time to catch bass fish because they tend to bite on artificial and live baits.
- Change in season- Season change is one of the biggest factors when it comes to bass fishing. Everything changes from water temperature to scarcity of food. But it does not limit your activity there as long as you plan out a strategy that works to every season, you could even do it even if it is snowing very hard.
- Researching on the fish’s habitat- This is one of the key things you should be considering before embarking on a fishing trip. You should also ask for seasoned anglers on other details to widen your stocked knowledge.
Heard of FloatationNation? Here’s a group of float tube enthusiasts that light up the bass in southern California:
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