Bass Fishing in the Fall
Fall Bass fishing can be some of the most exciting of the year. With the pressure of bass tournaments and recreational anglers, fall bass can prove to be a very seasoned adversary. In this article, I hope to introduce a few tips and techniques that can help you outsmart those finicky fall bass.
Downsizing your baits can prove to get more strikes when bass have seen, and probably caught, on the more popular baits like spinnerbaits and crankbaits. This relentless bombardment of these same type lures all season leaves the bass weary of striking. A more subtle and natural looking bait may be needed to score more strikes. My favorite bait to use during the fall, when finesse is needed for success, is the ZOOM fluke jr. rigged on the Arkie U-Head jighead.
A Super Fluke Jr. works great when the water is clear and the Swim’ Super Fluke Jr. in stained to muddy water. The split tail on the Super Fluke Jr. gives off a subtle action needed in clear water when a natural presentation is a must. The Swim’ Super Fluke Jr. is a must in stained to muddy water where finesse is still the ticket. A little vibration will help the bass locate your bait which means more strikes.
Downsizing your baits for finesse usually means downsizing the weights you use. I rig the ZOOM Fluke Jr’s with a quarter ounce or smaller sinker. A split-shot works great. It can be positioned at the nose of the fluke or a few inches above it. Positioning the split-shot above the nose really creates a lively and realistic presentation and is a great rig for fall bass. Use a bobber stop below the split-shot to keep it from sliding down the line. Another great bait for this rig is the Berkley Shakey Shad or the Zoom trick worm. The trick worm gives off a great realistic action that even picky bass can’t refuse.
BELOW THE BAITFISH
When pursuing fall bass it’s tempting to chase the schoolers in the shallows as they rip apart schools of baitfish. I know it’s hard to ignore the frenzy. You can find wolf packs of good bass within these schoolers most of the time the bigger bass will stay behind. They lazily devour the wounded shad the schoolers miss. The commotion above will wound baitfish. They will soon fall out of the school. Like a wolf on a wary deer, they will nonchalantly move in for the kill. Big fall bass are not only cautious about their actions. They know that laying back, allowing the young bucks to do the work, will save much-needed energy for the winter months on the way.
Knowing this bit of information can help you catch more big fall bass. While everyone is slinging topwater baits and spinnerbaits into schools of 14-inch bass you can lay back with your finesse baits and fool those prowling bass below. The trick is to present your best, dying baitfish presentation to the wolf pack below. With few anglers fishing for them, you might find that these bigger bass will readily smash your bait as they let their guard down in the midst of their own little feeding frenzy below.
FAST AND FURIOUS FALL FISHING
The fall is a great time to be on the water in search of bass as they once again show themselves in the shallows. The fishing can be so fast and furious that it can be hard to decide what to throw. So many anglers are throwing spinnerbaits and topwater baits in the fall. They catch a lot of bass in the fall.
Give these tips a try when the baitfish move into the shallows. The feeding frenzy has begun with bass busting on top. Find your favorite way to catch big fall bass as you enjoy a little feeding frenzy of your own down below all the commotion. Whether the bass is tucked away in thick brush, waiting to ambush wounded baitfish, or roaming beneath the massive schools, waiting for one to drop out, give these techniques a try this fall and remember that often the road less traveled is often paved with bigger bass.