‘Ol Jonnie hasn’t received much attention lately. He ain’t happy about it. Son of a gun just sits in my garage.
Doesn’t stink, but… needs a bath.
His exterior is a bit crusty. Cracked and rough. Far beyond what any moisturizer could fix.
Just kind of looks at me sideways.
That’s why I’ve been avoiding him.
Perhaps this is more of a commentary on me, not ‘ol Jon. We haven’t talked at all this year. Haven’t fished together. I’ve been lazy. Just don’t want to haul his rear down the road I guess. Grease his trailer. Maybe that’s the point, really. Been all this talk about developing a drive to improve, but my own laziness has caused me to regress as a fisherman. Now though… now I think I need his help.
‘Ol Jonnie Boy needs to come out of retirement… and get his butt out of my garage…
Where are the Largemouth Bass?
One of the beautiful benefits of keeping a site like this, is that I’m able to share the trials and tribulations of a fisherman. I’m not a robot. This site isn’t generated by artificial intelligence. I’m a guy that loves to fish; a guy that thinks about it constantly. About how it applies to life, and how I can use it to teach my boys to be better men. Teach them lessons that the world just ain’t teachin’ anymore. Some days on the water are amazing, other days are… not… but I’m gonna tell y’all the truth, one way or another. Combining relevant bits of my personal fishing journal with advice from revolutionary anglers like Ron & Al Lindner, Doug Stange, Matt Straw, Jason Lucas, Bill Binkelman and Buck Perry.
My name will never be used in the same sentence as theirs.
Makes no difference.
I write about fishing, because I love fishing.
Recently, the focus has been on busting a slump. The largemouth bass have been hard to find. I’ve caught a few, but the long and short of it is that this year has been weird. Hot. Low water. Fishing from shore has not been super productive. I know for a fact that the bass are still in there; it’s time to move out from shore a bit.
I have a few buddies in Missouri, a couple in Arkansas, and even some up north. They email me. I email them. The fishing reports are the same both ways – TOUGH BITE.
How has the fishing been in your area?
I'm not about to give up, and I'm sure you aren't either. Here are 3 important tips regarding bass location & movement that I'm keeping in mind as I change my approach... time to go deep!
1. Bass Move as the Temperature Changes
Air temperature matters... but only because it can affect the water temperature. Day to day it affects us more than the bass. Barometric pressure matters as well. It's all linked, so track both whether you're on the shore or in a boat. Remember that lakes, rivers, reservoirs, creeks and ponds are colder in the winter. Hotter in the summer. Somewhere in between in the spring and the fall, but if you're fishing smaller bodies of water, changes can be more dramatic.
This means the bass are more likely to move.
2. They Don't Move Far
It is not common for bass to migrate from one end of the lake to the other. This may be even more true on larger bodies of water, but chances are if you're not finding bass up shallow where they were yesterday, they're offshore. When the fish decide to move out - say from 5 feet to 15 feet - this vertical movement takes time. Bass need to adjust their swim bladder, which is a gradual process.
I recently purchased some new electronics for the jon boat. I want the ability to create my own maps while marking waypoints and tracking down bait and bass. The Garmin STRIKER Vivid 9sv Fishfinder makes economical sense... and this weekend I'll be installing it.
3. Food is the Key
More important that temperature, is food. Bass have to eat, and that doesn't change whether they are hot or cold. The quantity or amount they need to eat may change because of the temperature, but the simple fact that chow is required remains unchanged.
In the spring and the fall, the refrigerator is usually close to the shoreline or around cover like aquatic grass. Rock and docks can also offer up a bevy of delectable treats. Crayfish, minnows, frogs, bugs - these creatures are all abundant and active in the shallow water - so that's where the bass will be.
That food can move deeper in the summer and winter months. Deeper water means fewer temperature and oxygen fluctuations, which bass don't like. Shad, bluegill and other panfish will will move out deeper at times for these same reasons.
Find the food, and find the bass.
That's what me and 'ol Jonnie Boy will be doing this week. Before we run out of time. He's getting an upgrade, maybe a good scrubbing, and a bit of grease to make sure he's primed & ready to head on down the road with me.
Wish us luck, and go catch a few yourself!
Tight Lines & Godspeed, Patriots.