Weather conditions are constantly changing and fishing changes right along with the weather. It seems like half the time we go and practice for a tournament and figure something out that is working; then the weather up and changes the night before the tournament. Fisherman go back to the spots they found in pre-practice and draw a zip. What can you do to combat this and make a good fishing day out of it?
First assess the situation and try to figure out if the fish are in the area or if they have left. Let’s say we are catching fish in shallow bushes flipping a Zoom Brush Hog, the weather turns cold and the fish leave. The only condition we have is cold, so I will figure the bass didn’t go too far. They probably went to the closest drop off or channel. Now I will fish a Carolina rigged Zoom finesse worm or a Zoom Centipede slowly till I find fish again, because I don’t feel they have gone very far.
Now lets say it has rained, got cold and the water has muddied. Here is where I feel the fish have left the area. I have to make myself leave the area and look for better water conditions somewhere else. It’s hard to leave when you tore the bass up the day before, but to be successful you have to make yourself leave and not waste time in that area. In many tournaments I have left an area in my Nitro Z8 and run all the way to the other end of a body of water to find suitable fishing conditions and done well. So don’t be afraid to gamble.
Let the wind be your friend when you are looking for bass. Windy banks and points are great places to look for bass. I see so many boats trying to get out of the wind to fish and this is a big mistake. Wind stirs the water getting plankton to move. This gets bait fish to feeding, in turn turning on the bass. If you have narrow gaps between islands, you will get a wind driven current in the area and across points and current is a bass magnet. The wind will also move water temperatures around. You can be in 70 degrees on a south wind and it turns around and blows out of the north and drops 10 degrees where you are fishing, shutting the fish down. You can go to the other side of the lake where it was colder the day before and it will be warmer due to the wind blowing the warmer water across the lake. So always pay attention to the water temperature on your Nitro.
A lot of times rain tends to turn fish on. Especially in clear lakes where you have a lot of run off areas. When the water pours in, the bait fish will stack in these areas. You can throw a Zoom Fluke or a small Bass Pro Shops’ XPS Professional crank bait or a Bass Pro Shops’ Lazer Eye spinnerbait into the out flowing water and catch a bass on every cast at times. Bass will go super shallow in the rain, especially on warmer rainy days. Buzz baits can pay big dividends in these situations. Jimmy Houston had a motto, ”if it rains, tie on a spinnerbait or a buzzbait no matter what and it has worked many times for him.”
Cloudy days are my favorite days to fish, as bass seem to like to roam and several tactics are usually working. I want to cover a lot of water on these days, so I’ve got my MotorGuide pro series on high 36 volt and moving on down the bank. I will alternate between a Zoom trick worm and a Bass Pro Shops’ topwater Slim Dog. I fish the Trick worm floating style with Bass Pro Shops’ 10 lbs. fluorocarbon line and a 2/0 Mustad off set hook. I will catch a lot of bass in what I call “no-nothing” places.
To sum it up, use the weather to your advantage instead of letting it ruin your trip and you will do fine. Have you tried a Spider King rod holder on your boat? They are great! Go to www.spiderking.com and check them out.
Shake a soldier’s hand when you see them and thank them for their work. May God Bless and have a good fishing trip.
Written by Woo Daves