Trophy Bass Fishing


March


April


May


October


November

Volume Bass Fishing


June


July


August


September

Trophy bass fishing is best in the months of March, April, May, October and November. In the early spring once the water reaches 50 degrees, the large female smallmouth bass will begin to get active, although their metabolism is still slow. The large, trophy females smallmouth bass will move up on to shallow sandy and rocky flats when the sun is highest in the sky and the warmest part of the day to feed. Artificial baits such as jerkbaits, spinnerbaits, crankbaits and some plastics will entice the trophy fish to bite.

As the water warms into the 60's the large females will begin to stage for spawning and normally around the middle of May the females will lay their eggs. It's at this time the fishing will slow down for a few weeks and usually around Memorial Day the fishing turns on fire for most of the month of June. It's during this time that topwater baits reign supreme and add a terrific element to an already aggressive species of fish. It's not uncommon to catch 75-100 fish a day during this time period and an average day is usually 30-40 fish.

June, July, August and September are obviously the warmest months and fishing can still be really good even though the water can get very low and clear. It's much easier to isolate the fish as the deeper holes are more visible and easy to find. Smallmouth will also move out into the swifter water where the water is more oxygenated and more comfortable. Even though the average size fish is smaller this time of the year, a hooked smallmouth in swift water is a blast and often feels like a much bigger fish than reality due to their hard fighting nature. Plastic baits are great for summer fishing such as tubes, shaky head rigs, wacky rigged senkos and flukes.

Once the calender rolls over to October, the big fish bite begins to return as the water temperature drops from cooler fall days and nights. While the scenery is breathtaking any time of the year, it's especially beautiful in the fall. The other benefit is the river traffic is very light during this time of the year as students have gone back to school and many outdoorsmen transition to hunting. Some of our biggest fish have come near Halloween and Thanksgiving. The same baits used in the early spring are good at this time of the year and one of my favorites is a hair jig and crawfish trailer.

The key to catching trophy smallmouth bass is to be able to read the water where there are current breaks and current seams that are adjacent to feeding areas. The difference between a trophy fish and coming up empty could be only a matter of your bait being in the strike zone or a foot short. In cold water, smallmouth bass are not going to chase baits for a long distance.

This is where an experienced guide that knows the rivers, can read the water and make recommendations where to place a bait is the difference between catching trophy fish and average fish. It's also helpful to fish with a guide that's on the water frequently and can pick up on the movements of the fish from one day to the next. Just because fish are biting in one location one day and on a particular bait does not mean they will be in the same place the next day biting on that same bait.
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