Bass-Fishing Pros’ Tips for Catching Bass After the Spawn
Editor’s Note: With the bass on the bed, most anglers can find and catch them because they can see them. However, after the spawn, the bass seem to vanish. This week, six of the nation’s top-bass-fishing pros to tell us where to find post-spawn bass and how to catch them. Today we’ll learn how Kevin VanDam of Kalamazoo, Michigan, catches post-spawn bass. During his almost 20-year career, VanDam has made more than $2 million from bass fishing, more than any other pro fisherman ever has earned. He’s won the BASS Angler-of-the-Year title, as well as the Bassmaster Classic.
I usually start at the backs of the creeks and the pockets and fish toward the mouths of these waterways. The bass will be traveling, and oftentimes, you’ll find them halfway between their spawning area (the backs of the embayments) and the mouths of the creek. They also can be at the mouth of the creeks holding on structure, secondary points or primary points. Therefore, if you fish at the backs of the creeks and out toward the mouths, you’ll be able to find the bass. The first place to look for post-spawn bass after the spawn is close to the spawning area. Later, the bass will be further away from the spawning site and holding on offshore structure in-between the spawning flats and the main lake offshore structure.
When fishing for bass in the post spawn, fish slow-moving baits or baits with plenty of action that can stay in the strike zone for long periods. If the bass are coming off the bed, I prefer top-water lures like the Strike King Spit-N-King, the Strike King Wild Shiner or even the Strike King Double Take buzzbait. I’ll be fishing these lures around objects where bass are suspending.
Post-spawn female bass like to suspend above underwater bushes, underneath docks or in grass beds. Those big fish like to hang out and rest after they’ve laid their eggs.
If the bass are further along in their summer migration pattern, and they’ve moved out to the main creek points or the first bottom break away from the spawning flats, the bass will be concentrated in 5 to 15 feet of water. I’ll fish a Strike King Series 5, a Strike King Sexy Shad crankbait or a Strike King KVD spinner bait in the blue shad-color. Remember that oftentimes the shad spawn right after the bass spawn. For this reason, I prefer shad-colored baits in the post spawn. I won a 2006 BASS Elite Series Tournament in Guntersville, Alabama, using this tactic with a Strike King Series 5 crankbait in the sexy shad color and the blue shad spinner bait.
Tomorrow: George Cochran on Post-Spawn Bass