Hunt for Shallow Bass at Any Time of Year by Jimmy Houston
Day 1: How to Find Shallow-Water Bass with Bass Pro Jimmy Houston
Editor’s Note: When largemouth bass head for the shallows in the fall or at anytime of the year, finding them begins with knowing where they’re not.
The main reason I prefer to fish for shallow-water bass is that I can catch them whether they’re hungry or not. A shallow-water bass often will strike to protect its territory or strike as a reflex action when it sees a baitfish close by. A bass holding in deep water must be hungry, or it simply won’t strike. If I can locate the fish, I know I’ll have three chances of catching a shallow-water bass, but only one chance of taking a deep-water bass.
To locate bass on any lake, a good bass fisherman goes through a process of elimination, bypassing all the places a bass shouldn’t be, given the time of year and weather conditions. The successful bass angler concentrates his fishing time in the areas where a bass should be. Points consistently pay dividends at almost any time of the year and under most weather and water conditions. On most lakes, the best points to fish are the ones closest to underwater creeks or river channels. These points provide a bottom break bass use as highways to travel close to shallow water, where they can feed. Although some anglers think they need topo maps to find creek and river channels, almost any lake map shows the underwater structures. Armed with this knowledge, even an angler who doesn’t understand how to pattern bass can go to a strange lake and catch fish. When fishing points, I prefer to use a deep-diving crankbait, a jig and pig, a spinner bait or some type of jerkbait.
A rule that has helped me catch bass regardless of weather and water conditions is the philosophy of, “What is important to bass is important to me.” During the spring, bass are mainly concerned with spawning. Knowing bass generally spawn in 8 feet of water or less, in springtime, I don’t fish water deeper than 8 feet. During the spring months, therefore, I fish almost entirely along the shoreline.
These tactics are just a sample of what you’ll learn in the new Kindle eBooks, “How to Bass Fish Like a Pro” and “How to Catch the Biggest and Most Bass in Any Lake” by John E. Phillips. Go to http://www.amazon.com/kindle-ebooks, type in the names of the books, and download them to your Kindle, and/or download a Kindle app for your iPad, SmartPhone or computer.