asked a lot of questions about bass fishing in Lake County Florida.
By far, the most asked question is “How do I find the fish?”
Forty years ago, this wasn’t much of a problem because bass were
everywhere. Today, you are looking for spots that consistently
hold fish that will bite. Most people know of a few community
holes where everyone fishes. If you want to have
consistent success, you need to find a way to locate fishing spots
of your own.
bass, the experts use a “search bait”. The properties of a
good search bait are: coverage, confidence and comfort.
Coverage means that the lure can cover a lot of water quickly.
Confidence means you must have confidence that bass will bite the
bait and comfort means that you can use the bait for long periods of
time without fatigue.
search bait can be any lure with those three qualities. My
favorite is a rattletrap because the rattling sound draws curious
bass like a magnet and the flash and speed causes a reaction strike.
Color doesn’t seem to matter much, just use a silver flash in bright
sun and a gold flash on darker days.
easiest place to find bass that you can catch is to start shallow.
There are a lot of reasons for this; shallow bass are usually active
bass, most of the cover in our lakes is shallow and the stained
water color in Florida lakes causes many fish to hold shallow and
close to cover.
the best ways for beginners to find bass is by trolling. Let
the lure out about 50-75 feet behind your boat and run it down the
bank as fast as you can without pulling it out of the water.
Don’t jump from place to place, just keep fishing until you get a
strike. When you do, slow down and fish the area with slower
baits such as a plastic worm. Stay alert and look for
splashes, minnows jumping, fishing birds or reeds moving.
years ago, I decided to fish all of Little Lake Harris. I knew
it was holding big fish and I needed to find them before a club
tournament. I picked up a map, drew a line where I wanted to
start and went out on the lake. It took me a number of days to
fish the entire lake, but it forced me to fish areas I had never
fished before. I wound up finding a pile of big fish and won
the tournament with ease.
brings me to the number one reason most weekend anglers don’t catch
as many fish as they could, they just don’t fish close enough to the
fish, but that’s the story for next week’s article.