Its February, the days are getting a little longer here in the South. It’s still rainy and cold out, but spring is right around the corner. The bass are preparing to spawn and the bite is getting good. I want to share a few tips that might help you find bass during this stage in the cycle.
Fishing during the pre-spawn months can result in a great day of fishing. The bass are emerging from their deep hiding spots looking for the essentials, warm water and food. The water temperature plays a big role in how these bass react. When the water hits the mid 50’s, I am looking for bass to begin moving up shallow more and more. I have 3 different areas I like to target during the transition from winter to spring. Starting out shallow and moving to deeper water is how I prefer to find the pattern. I do this because bass like shallow water, no matter the time of year you can find a bass somewhere in the shallows. They are seeking warm water, this is also where their food source likes to congregate this time of the year.
Back Water Ponds
These areas are holding tanks for hungry bass. Following a creek channel up into one of these is like finding a gold mine. The water temperature can be 60 degrees back here, when the main lake temperature could be 53 degrees. Ponds also offer prime spawn conditions for bass. The warmer water in this area draws fish to it throughout the entire day, this is why I prefer to target these areas first. I usually start off with a search bait, this can be a spinner bait, or a shallow diving crank bait. The goal is to trigger a reaction strike first. If you start catching fish in these shallow areas, don’t leave, there is bound to be more. Slow down your presentation and pick the area apart with a jig or worm.
If the bite isn’t going well in the shallows, try moving to a little deeper water. I like to target these points on my way out of the shallows. These secondary points reside in the creek channels you traveled through to find the back water ponds. I like to throw a lipless crank bait along the contour lines of the point. If I get a reaction bite, I will switch to a 1/2 ounce Football head jig or a Shakey Head jig and pick the area apart. These points are the middle area, between shallow and deep water. Careful though, if threatened, the bass can retreat quickly to the depths to escape.
Moving out of the creek or river, and back into the main body of water, you will find the entrance. This is like a gated entrance with a long driveway, leading to the big beautiful mansion at the end. The points that reside in this area are long and deep most of the time. The deep dark water allows the bass to rest, and eat on passing bait fish. Lakes have channels that run through them, and bass use these channels as “highways”. Bass like to stop at these main points for a pit stop on their journey across the lake. That’s why these areas are so hot all the time. Main points produce fish all year long not just during Pre-spawn conditions.