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Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!
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2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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Here in the southcentral, pre-spawn smallmouth fishing has kicked in quicker than what I would have expected with the rivers iced over so recently. Water temps are into the forties and this usually heralds the start of bass fishing (at least for WW fans like us). For the next month, until about mid to late April when I usually stop bass fishing, you can really have some fast action with a variety of WW species that tend to be overlooked with the advent of trout season and hatches.
Last year, although a milder winter, seemed to get off to a slower start with cold temps into springtime. We discussed it at length last year:

2013 Pre-spawn

Anyway, unless we see a return to an extended period of cold weather, I think we can kick off the bass fishing season. Here's a very nice 18.5" fish from this afternoon that ate a big articulated streamer fished low and slow. Hopefully 2014 will show us a bunch of these guys.

Attach file:



jpg  SMB2.JPG (108.27 KB)
26_532bb3f8385a0.jpg 482X321 px

Posted on: 3/20 23:38


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2013/2/16 0:51
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Dave that is an AWESOME fish! I talked to some guys on the J a few days ago that said the same thing, water temps are almost to the point where bass get active. They had not caught any bass that day.

Posted on: 3/20 23:52
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Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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Awesome SMB! Usually this time of year I'm in trout mode. I had no idea bass fishing picked up this time of year.

Posted on: 3/21 7:12


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2013/1/15 12:02
From Pipersville Pa.
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That's a really nice smallie. Yesterday a friend and I were talking about bass. We are ready but the ponds and lakes here are still frozen. But soon we will be out there between trout fishing trips.

Congrats nice fish,

GC

Posted on: 3/21 8:10
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Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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Wow, it seems really early for bass! Nice fish too.

Posted on: 3/21 20:40


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!
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Thanks - no doubt, he's a gorgeous fish (actually, probably a "she").

Not only is he very large but, in my experience, river SMBs often look their best this time of year. Perhaps this is simply due to having a restful winter in cold temps. After the spawn and during the subsequent summer, SMBs can look pretty rough with split fins, busted dorsal spines, sores and injuries, and battered skin. This particular fish has almost flawless color and skin with near perfect, very large fins. Of particular note: there is a distinct green tone over the upper front of the fish's head, in the dorsal fins, and at the base of the tail. Pretty contrast with the overall brown, gray and gold tones.

Posted on: 3/22 10:22


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2011/7/6 12:30
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Wow I had not expected this. I may hit the Stoga up tomorrow!

Posted on: 3/22 11:17


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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From Montgomery County
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Can't wait to get into some Bass.

Posted on: 3/22 12:59


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2007/1/5 16:49
From Hershey
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Fished the Swattie near Hershey today. Water temp 45 but no bites.

Posted on: 3/22 13:58
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Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2012/10/24 19:22
From Landenberg, PA
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wow, your water temps are high - White Clay was 39 this morning.

maybe i should get the float tube out one evening this week and hit Somerset Lake...

thats a really nice fish. on a 5wt ?

Posted on: 3/22 20:11
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Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2012/3/14 6:23
From Lancaster
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That's a great fish Dave. I still haven't figured out this pre-spawn bass thing, maybe it'll come together this year. Either way, it is great to see you kick things off after a long hard winter.

Posted on: 3/22 20:32


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!
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Quote:

dc410 wrote:
That's a great fish Dave. I still haven't figured out this pre-spawn bass thing, maybe it'll come together this year. Either way, it is great to see you kick things off after a long hard winter.


Thanks John. Pre-spawn bass are usually easy to catch - the key is finding them and fishing low and slow with flies that imitate fish (you can't beat a black Clouser Minnow). Look for slow, deep, bankside eddies with little current. Anywhere a point juts out into the river current can create such an eddy. If you find bass, they will be there most years - it's a predictable game (most of the time). If water temps are below about 45, I fish the bottom of the eddy in the slowest water, which is often in the middle of the eddy. Strikes are subtle - I like a big strike indicator. Once temps get into the upper 40s-50s, the bass tend to move right out into the current break and are much more aggressive. By summertime, bass have dispersed throughout the river and are usually holding on mid channel structure.....but this time of year, you want that slow, deep water close to shore.

Posted on: 3/22 22:15


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2012/3/14 6:23
From Lancaster
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Thanks for the pre-spawn tips. I have a few places in mind that fit your description. Just have to get out there and give 'em a shot.

Posted on: 3/22 23:02


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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12/8 21:26
From Granville
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Smallmouth bass fishing is EXCELLENT all year long. I catch my real monsters always during the colder months and right now is a great time to get them. I catch an abundance of bass over 20" each year in the Juniata. SMB are such great fighters and a beautiful fish.

Posted on: 3/23 12:55


Re: Time to Kick Off Bass Fishing!

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2011/6/4 21:31
From Glen Rock PA
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thanks Dave for the update! got me getting excited! last smallie for me was Nov 2

Posted on: 3/24 15:07



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