During the spring, it might seem like you can’t keep the bass off the end of your line. All you have to do is cast something with a hook and the largemouth bass gobble it up.
Then the hot days of summer come along, and you start to wonder where all the bass went...
They’re still there, but you need to change up your fishing strategies to find them, grab their attention, and make them strike. With the right approach, you can catch largemouth bass no matter how hot it gets.
Top-water fishing can be one of the most effective ways to catch bass on a hot, windless summer day. During the summer, the lake’s surrounding habitat is full of life, and it’s not just fish. Frogs, mice, bugs, and other tasty treats are always getting a bass’ attention, so while it might seem like bass go deep during the hot days, you can usually have success with a popping frog or a plastic plug. Make the lure splash around, creating waves and triggering a bass’ feeding instincts. Always remember to pop your lure a few times, and then let it rest so bass can make a strike. This is a great way to find active bass, as those lingering near the top are often in the market for a meal.
After the spring spawn, bass like to move into grassy and weedy areas where they can rest and regain some energy. The depth can vary depending on the clarity of the water, as dark water will usually hold shallow bass while clear water will push the bass deeper. In general, fishing around the edges of grass and weed beds will be more effective in the early morning and late evening, when bass are usually more active. However, you can often find bass hanging out in the vegetation all day.
Who doesn’t like a nice shady spot on a hot summer day? When the sun is scorching down, bass will look for a cool place to rest, and they often find it under trees and other structure. One of the best places to find bass on a sunny day is underneath docks, where they are hanging out, cooling off, and waiting for a meal to come their way. Work on skipping chatter baits underneath the docks, or use a jig that you slowly finesse around the dock’s structure. Always remember, however, that your first priority should be respecting the property. Never do anything that could damage the area, and always retrieve a lure that has been snagged on the dock.
One last technique is to use lures that have some noise and vibrations. Bass can get pretty comfortable in the summer, and enticing them to come out and take a bite can be difficult. When you’re struggling to get a bite, make the switch to a chatter bait, spinner bait, or clacking crank bait. These lures will make some noise and should give you a better chance at being noticed by a trophy bass.
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