March Fishing

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Largemouth Bass in SpringI’m so looking forward to getting my new Nitro Z-8 on the water this month, especially with the warm weather we have had this winter. Our lakes on the east coast are in good shape and have had ample rain to keep them about normal water level. I truly believe this will be one of our best months to fish this year, especially if you are looking to catch big bass. They are going to come to the shallow water, and they will be hungry. I don’t care if you fish ponds, lakes or rivers, this will be the time of year to get your string stretched. Big females will be feeding heavily and looking for sandy spots to bed on.

This is the time of year when you can hardly go wrong fishing any slow-moving bait. I love to fish the Zoom 8-inch green pumpkin Lizard or the big Brush Hog on a Carolina rig.

I want to keep my boat in less than one foot of water and be able to reach the bank with a cast. The Carolina rig lets me cover shallow- to mid-range depths fairly fast and very accurately while I’m trying to pinpoint the depth in which the bass are holding.

Once I establish this depth, I will work in with my Motorguide trolling motor to that depth and fish parallel to the bank, keeping my rig in the strike zone all the time.

I like to use an half-oz. egg sinker with no more than a three-foot leader in the early season. One tip is you don’t need a big hook to catch bass on a rig. I use a Mustad wide-gap offset hook in 1/0 or 2/0 in most situations. The lighter hook allows the lizard to fall slower and crawl over cover, giving a much more lifelike look to your presentation.

March is also a great month for big willow leaf spinnerbaits like the Bass Pro Shops’ Lazer Eye. This is the bait I’m going to, especially if the wind is howling.

First thing I look for are points with the wind crashing on them. Second, I’m going to fish any rip rap, especially if there is a bridge near by to give extra current. This is where the bait likes to stack up, and the bass will be right there looking for them. I throw the Lazer Eye right up on the shore and slow roll it back to the boat.

The key here is to fish slow and hang on. Again, that big fish does not want to have to chase anything. My preference is to use a lot of chartreuse in stained water and white in clearer water.

A lot of times, you can catch bass right in the back of the pockets whenever you have a lot of wind blowing into them, especially if there is a ditch running into the back end. This can be a prime schooling area, and the Alabama rig with five baby Zoom Flukes on it could get you a limit in a couple casts.

Crankbaits are also deadly. This is the time of year when I catch more bass on lipless baits like the XPS Rattle Shad than any other time. I’m looking for flats near the back end of creeks where I like to throw them. If you find shad flicking the water, this is the go-to bait. Try a steady retrieve at first, then go to a pumping motion next. Usually one of those retrieves will work really well.

When you are riding along in your Nitro, keep your eye on your Raymarine depth finder and keep looking for the warmest water. Sometimes they say the north shore is warmest, but that is not always the case as warm water can be blown around with the wind. I have seen lakes change 10 degrees overnight simply by the wind changing directions and blowing the warm water to the other side of the lake.

And hey, you need to look up the Spider King rod holders on the Internet. They are the best I have ever used!

Next time you see a soldier, be sure to take the time to thank them for their dedication to saving our freedom. Good luck fishing, and may God bless you and your family.

by Woo Daves