Best Strategies for Cold Water Bass Fishing

by : Daniel Eggertsen

The Largemouth Bass is a cold blooded creature. Like all cold blooded creatures its metabolism slows down as the surrounding temperature becomes colder. When this occurs the Largemouth Bass has a greatly decreased energy level. As an angler you must take this change in behavior into account as you plot your fishing strategies. The key things to always remember is keep things slow.

The first thing to consider is just how cold the water temperatures are. Remember the important factor is the water temperature, not the air temperature. If the water temperature is less than 40 degrees I would not even consider targeting Largemouth Bass. This only occurs in the Northern United States. If you want to fish when the water is this cold target another species such as Walleye or Northern Pike. At 45 degrees Largemouth Bas become a little bit active, I still do not recommend fishing for this species under these conditions but at this point you have a fighting chance. It is not until the temperature reaches fifty degrees until Largemouth Bass become a fishable species in my opinion.

When approaching a fishing strategy for Largemouth Bass at this time of year you need to slow things down dramatically. If you are fishing an area that you know holds fish and are not catching any the key things is to always slow down. It is almost impossible to fish too slowly for cold water Largemouth Bass. In fact you need to rethink everything you do during the hot summer months and make a 180 degree change.

You have no need for spinnerbaits, buzzbaits or any topwater lures during periods of cold water. Crankbaits and any other fast moving lures should also be left in the tackle box for warmer times. The two best artificials you can tie on your line are jigs and plastic worms. You should also think big in the cold water months. Again these bass are not very active. They do not have the energy to chase down several small meals. Their objective is to expend very little energy and get a big meal and then forget about eating for awhile.

I recommend the following setup for cold water bass fishing. First you need an ultra sensitive rod. You are much more concerned with feeling a pickup than fighting a fish at this time of year. If you use a heavy action rod you will not even feel the pickups and drops by Largemouth bass that have sampled your offering and declined. You need a high degree of sensitivity to feel pickups and set the hook before the bass drops your bait. They will not slam your offerings aggressively.