or many bass anglers spring is a welcome back to
the water and a start to pursue their favorite foe
once again. With the typical conditional changes expected in the springtime transition, it may take a little
time to find and get back on the bass again.
Hop on board as we work to search and find bass in
their winter haunts and follow them as they start to make
their move into the spring season.
When it comes to winter a good part of the bass population has taken up residence in deeper water sections of the fishery. Yes, there could be a rouge population of bass that will accept some shallower residences or treks, but that is more related to food availability. Many times, these bass will be in and out of these areas and are keying in on and following a moving food source. When not in pursuit, they will spend time in deeper water.
The main reason for the deeper water haunts, at this time of the year, is the depths have more stable water conditions during the cold months. This deeper water will not be subject to big temperature movements as cold fronts roll through the area.
When these deeper areas have a built-in food source, the bass are homebodies at this time of year. They will mimic the same characteristics in the winter that they do all year long. They will look for cover to hold on to or be close to if there is a food source close by.
ELECTRONICS ARE KEY
When it comes to finding early-season bass areas, electronics are your eyes under the water. On my first trip back to the water, I will use my Lakemaster Map Chip to look for points that will stretch from the shallows out to deep water areas. These can and will simply be a path that the bass will use to move back and forth from their deep-water holding spots to the shallower water flats to spawn.
Another area to look for and focus on is a weed flat drop-off. You can easily see these areas on your map, and study them to breakdown what these areas have to offer. Take note of the
condition of the deeper weeds – are they still up and healthy or are they down and dying?
If the weeds are still in decent shape, then the area that outside of the weedline may be the key point here? I look for hard bottom – rock areas. These areas will offer a built-in food source with a craw population and may be the main holding attraction for bass in these areas.
These areas will not be as obvious as points and will take you a little longer to figure out, but I can tell you it will be well worth your time. When you do find prime areas like this, they will produce year after year giving you a base to start with every time you hit the water.
Mega Side imaging in these cases will be worth its weight in gold as you can breakdown a larger area in just a few passes, and then drop a few waypoints to circle back and check for a closer look later. Remember to look for rock areas or hard bottom transition areas.
Bottom structure boulders, wood on the bottom is prime. This could be trees that are laying on the bottom, scattered wood from past storms or other man-made
structures like cribs or sunken cover. All these
structures are key that the bass and food in this
area will use throughout the season.
Also look for isolated hard spots. This
could be random rockpiles or just a hard
bottom area that will attract food and bass
in the process. These areas may not be big
but are different from the surrounding area
which is part of the attraction for bass or