Bass Fishing Guide
Before grabbing the rod and reel to go bass fishing, here is a basic bass fishing guide to help you get started. This guide will discuss the types of bass, kinds of lures, and the best places to go bass fishing across the country. It is meant to give you some basic information on bass fishing. Once you have chosen your location, you will find specific bass fishing guides for that location to help you further.
- What types of bass are there, and where do I find them? Different types of bass are found in several locations throughout the United States.
- When fishing in the Atlantic Ocean, you will find striped bass. Even though that is where they are most commonly found, they are also found in other areas of the country in the lakes, beaches and reservoirs, including Arkansas, Arizona, California, Georgia, Texas, Nevada and Tennessee.
- If you are looking for spotted bass or smallmouth bass you can find them in the small and medium rivers, streams and lakes throughout North America.
- Largemouth bass can be found in nearly every state, but they are most commonly found in the southeastern states.
- Finding the right lure. There are eight basic types of lures to choose from depending on where you decide to go bass fishing and what types of bass you are trying to attract.
- Soft plastic lures not only have life-like action in the water but are also life-like to the bass’ sense of touch. They work for both bigmouth and smallmouth bass and do well in the rocks, weeds, grass and other conditions.
- Subsurface plugs include crankbaits, minnow baits, vibrating plugs, and jerkbaits. They are made for different depths and can be used year-round, but work the best in waters that are over 50 degrees.
- Topwater plugs include stickbaits, prop baits, chuggers, crawlers, buzzbaits, and some of the small, soft plastic baits. They work best when bass fishing in water above 60 degrees, in the early morning or late afternoon, and in the post spawn period. They can be used on shallow banks in the spring and summer and jumps in the fall.
- Jigs are great in deep or shallow waters, around brush, rocks or trees, and in any water temperature. Scents can be used on them to lure the bass, but they can get hung up so it is important to learn exactly how to use them.
- Swimbaits. This bait is good for fishing down deep where the big bass are. They come in all shapes and sizes and can catch fish at all water levels. They are made of plastic and wood. They look and act like real forage fish. Some are in sizes from 3” to 12” and weigh anywhere from ½ ounce to 8 ounces. You need a heavy duty rod and reel to use swimbaits.
- Spinnerbaits. There are two types of these freshwater fishing lures: in-line lures and safety pins. The in-lines have a tendency to clog up in the grass. The safety pin deflects weeds, are very versatile, and can be used almost anywhere in most conditions.
- Spoons. These lures are good for vertical jigging. They are made of either steel or brass, and they wobble like dying or injured bailfish. Some of the new designs make them more adaptable to bass fishing.
- Flies. More bass fishermen are using flies. They are not only very exciting to watch when the fish bites, they are also very good at catching bass on fly rods in the deeper waters.
- Now, where to go bass fishing! Fortunately, state and local governments manage the health and population of bass across the United States with the exception of Alaska. There is access to many lakes and rivers either by boat or by foot across the country. A few of the more popular places to go bass fishing are: Falcon Lake and Lake Amistad in Texas; The Everglades and Lake Okeechokee in Florida; Lake Lanier in Georgia; Lake Casitas and Clear Lake in California; and, Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair in Michigan.