Finding largemouth bass during the transitional seasons of the year can sometimes seem challenging, but with a few key late fall fishing tips, you can bump up your cool weather catch rates while using artificial baits and lures.
Consider these late fall fishing pointers when heading out to your local freshwater spots:
- Use search baits to cover more water. One of the most important fall fishing tips is to cover plenty of water versus spending too much time in one spot. Use search baits, like a crankbait or topwater, to quickly locate schools of largemouth bass that are chasing shad to fatten up for winter. When you get a few hits in one spot or see schooling bass chasing baitfish on the surface, then you can drop your anchor and invest more time in a particular area.
- Fish the flats. Bass generally head into shallow water during the fall months. Check flats that are adjacent to creek mouths, and try fishing in 3 to 6 feet of water with a few good fall fishing lures like a shallow water jerkbait or lipless crankbait. Focus on parts of the flat where there is hard bottom or bottom composition changes such as gravel to mud or gravel to sand.
- Note significant drops in water temperature. Another one of the best fall fishing tips is to consider the impact that a cold front will have on the activity level of bass during this time of year. As we transition into late fall fishing and see more significant drops in temperature, fish will be much less likely to chase fast-moving baits and bass fishing lures due to the fact that their metabolism will be slowing down in preparation for winter. Use smaller baits (think 2 to 3 inch soft plastic worms or creature baits or marabou jigs) and fish much slower.
- Keep changing up your lures if you're not getting strikes. Some anglers like to use shad-imitating crankbaits almost exclusively in the fall, but bass can get finicky when they're schooling. It may sound basic, but if you're using a lure with a particular type of action and it isn't getting bites, switch to something else. Standard fall fishing tactics for bass might have you starting out with a shad-pattern crankbait, but then changing over to a topwater lure. Sometimes it’s a difference in the type of lure action that brings fish to the boat.
To sum up, these late fall fishing tips for largemouth bass mean covering more water, fishing shallow flats near creek mouths, downsizing after a temperature drop, and switching your lures if you're not seeing enough action.
Now you can plan a day of fall fishing with your family, get your fishing licenses online, check the state freshwater regulations, put on your fall fishing jackets, and get ready for some late season fun on the water!