• Bass Fishing

    After finding spawning shad on Lake Okatibbee, John Temple caught this spawned-out female largemouth.

    Scouting new water: It’s for the birds

    When Brock Mosley hits new water for the first time, he scouts … for birds.

    April 15 at 7:00am
    Paul Elias recommends that you fish the Zara Spook, pictured here, or the Whopper Plopper, at first light.

    Fish for Bogue Homa post-spawn bass in April

    April is a post-spawn bass month at Bogue Homa. The females will be coming off the bed, and they’ll want to feed up to help recover from the spawn. But they will still will be holding fairly close to the spawning area in shallow water.

    April 12 at 9:00am
    Brock Mosley grabs a bass while fishing an Elite Series tourney last season. Being versatile has helped the young pro advance, and it’s his best advice for other anglers.

    Don’t forget those post-spawn Mississippi bass

    Brock Mosley had cast a swim jig across a shallow flat, was working it through the pads stems, and …

    Wham!

    April 01 at 7:00am
    Jimmy Mason holds up a 6-pound bass caught on a Bomber Jointed Wake Minnow at Wilson Lake.

    Bomber’s Jointed Wake Minnow

    Russell Garner remembers the days in South Texas and elsewhere along the Gulf Coast when anglers modified jointed Redfins to make a “wake” bait that redfish found hard to resist.

    March 21 at 9:00am
    Bass pros like Pete Ponds always rely on their electronics, but the technology really comes into play during the  prespawn.

    Keep track of what’s under the boat

    Prespawn congregates big numbers of hungry fish in staging areas outside spawning flats, right? So why is it we might score a flurry of bites, only to have the action suddenly end?

    March 15 at 8:00am
    Paul Elias likes Bay Springs in March because bass will be moving shallow, and you never know whether you’re catching a largemouth, a smallmouth or a spotted bass when the fish takes the bait.

    Bay Springs’ bass triple play

    I enjoy fishing Bay Springs Lake  in March, because I like catching largemouth, spotted and smallmouth bass on the same lake, often in the same places and sometimes on the same lure. 

    March 12 at 9:00am
    A proven prespawn pattern for Mississippi bass is swimming a lizard, which Gary Klein uses anywhere he fishes during this magical period.

    Punch your ticket for the bass buffet

    This winter has been a butt-kicker, but Pete Ponds isn’t worried. For one thing, the bass pro from Madison has plenty of warm clothing, and he’s thinking that recent weather patterns will produce more opportunities to catch fish during the seasonal transition period known as the prespawn.

    March 01 at 7:00am
    If you’ve located bass holding on or near the bottom, it’s hard to beat a chunky jig-and-pig in February.

    Techniques and presentation are critical

    Getting a lure to the depth at which bass are holding and keeping it in the strike zone are two requirements a fisherman must satisfy to entice a strike. How neat it would be to have a lure with a built-in transponder that would transmit its exact depth and location in relation to the bass. Such baits doesn’t exist, but finding structure or drop-offs on the sonar and the ability to feel them with a rod and line will suffice. 

    February 15 at 7:00am
    Wes Vowell broke the Neshoba County Lake record with this 14.3-pound sow caught in February 2017.

    Mississippi’s prespawn hot spots

    The Magnolia State has hundreds of bodies of water where bass can be caught, but some are simply better than others at different times of the year and bass cycles.

    February 15 at 7:00am
    Having a quality depth finder on your bass boat and knowing how to use it to locate baitfish and bass is a key to better prespawn fishing.

    Get the right gear

    For prespawn bass, angler Donnie Stuart of Pelahatchie favors 17-pound braided line with a fluorocarbon leader as long as the rod he is using when not using a slip-cork. For the rod with the slip cork he uses a 10- to 12-pound monofilament. 

    February 15 at 7:00am
    Baits like hard- or soft-plastic jerkbaits or swimbaits can be fished for suspended bass early in the prespawn cycle.

    Throw what bass want

    According to Tom Holman, a biologist with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, gizzard shad tolerate cooler water better than threadfin shad. When shad die, they sink to the bottom, which is why catfish caught in winter are often gorged with threadfin picked up off the bottom.

    February 15 at 7:00am
    Curl-tail grubs are a popular choice for umbrella rigs like the YUMbrella Flash Mob.

    Grubs on umbrella rigs

    Discussions of grubs cannot exclude their group presentation on the umbrella rig. Although banned in Bassmaster Elite and FLW Tour competition, the multi-armed “egg beaters” remain a vital tool for bass anglers from fall through early spring.

    February 15 at 7:00am
    In February, Ross Barnett bass will be in the prespawn mode; you may catch a good number of bass that will weigh 4 pounds or more.

    February bassing at Ross Barnett

    I think February is the best month of the year to fish Ross Barnett Reservoir for bass, which are in the prespawn mode and moving shallow. In many sections of the country — and Mississippi — you will often be fishing for bass in deep water in February, but on Ross Barnett, you’ll catch most of your fish in water 3 feet deep or less.

    February 12 at 9:00am
    G. Loomis E6X

    G. Loomis E6X

    Lightweight, strong, and sensitive. That’s the recipe for a fishing rod that bass anglers strive to find, and it can be elusive, especially when you add affordability into the mix. Or at least it used to be. But the G. Loomis E6X changes that. 

    February 01 at 7:00am
    Bass in the pre-spawn stage are vulnerable to fishermen who can track the progression of the spawning cycle. February is a perfect time to find big fat female largemouths staging deep near shallow water.

    Spike those early spawners

    Few things are more frustrating for an angler than seeing a large bass ignore his or her offering, which, well, darn it, becomes a pretty common occurrence in the early weeks of the spawn in Mississippi. 

    February 01 at 7:00am
    Simple and subtle, the Strike King Rage Tail Menace makes a great jig trailer.

    Great with grubs — Bass-fishing tips for grubs

    They’re kind of like the short stop of your tackle box, only without all the glamor and star power. Indeed, grubs are a multi-talented category of soft plastics whose lack of fanfare starkly contrasts their versatility.

    February 01 at 7:00am