MIKE GILES: Slow down for hot bass catching action

Photo by Mike Giles

Krystin Nicole Waller displays a nice hot weather bass she caught with the help of The Original Fish Grip.


Too hot to fish! That’s a statement made by some people during blazing hot August summer days.

Never! It just never gets too hot to fish say some diehards. I’m prone to agree with some people about it being too hot to fish-some of the time. But if you pick your times right July through September can be some of the most fantastic fishing of the year. And it’s actually easy for some anglers in the know.

Easy to fish during hot weather you may ask? Yes, it’s much easier to find the bass whether they’re in shallow water lakes or deeper reservoirs and rivers. The reason it’s easy is because they become very predictable this time of year. If the water is relatively shallow in your preferred fishing lake, then simply look for the thickest cover and that’s where you’ll usually find the bass.

Lunker bass don’t move around a lot during the hot weather preferring to bury deep lily pads, grass or brushtops. If there’s something in the water that provides cover from the sun, they’ll be there but they don’t move much and they’re not active like they are in the cooler weather.

Hot weather makes bass more vulnerable to anglers who know where they’re at. You just have to tailor your fishing to their wants, needs and desires. In other words feed them what they want, when they want it. For lunker bass that means if you can find them you can catch them because they don’t turn down an easy meal.

Finesse bass into biting

Simply drop that lure on their head or in front of them they’ll usually strike out of reaction and never move a muscle. They’ll simply flair those gills and suck in that bream, minnow or lure. Now you must have the right lure and presentation but if you offer them something without disturbing their world, they’ll strike 99 percent of the time!

MIKE GILES: Slow down for hot bass catching action

Photo by Mike Giles

River Roberts Griffith displays a nice lunker bass he caught while fishing with his grandfather Bruce Roberts recently.

As soon as you arrive at a lake it’s best to make a quick assessment of the situation and determine if there is any vegetation such as grass, pads, or overhanging bushes. If there is then you can fish the greenery and most likely find some good bass.

Is there any visible wood cover in the water? Do you see any stumps, logs, or blown down trees or brush piles then you’re in business?

Wooden structure

If you see brushpiles in the water, then you are in business and the thicker the better. However, you better have stout line or braid on your reel, or you’ll likely go home empty-handed lamenting about what might have been.

I prefer fishing plastic craws, worms and tubes when targeting thick brush during the hot weather months. Whether I’m fishing 4 feet deep or 10 feet doesn’t matter, if the cover is there you can bet those bass will be buried deep in the brush and it will take some heavy-duty equipment and keen reflexes to pry them out of the cover.

I prefer lightweight tubes or creature baits when pitching into the brushpiles and I’ll use 50-pound braid with a bullet weight pegged with a bobber stopper and a wide gap hook fished on a 7-foot-3 BPS Johnny Morris Signature Series rod and reel. While the big bass may be buried in the middle of the brush top, you’ll be better served to work the edges first so that you don’t disturb the whole top if you get hung up.

I’ll pick out the thickest branches on the outside and then just pitch my worm in the middle of it. Sometimes you see your line stop, or twitch before it gets to the bottom and that’s a sign that the bass have it in their mouth. If you think you got a bite jack his jaw straight up and set the hook. If there’s no fish, there then you haven’t lost a thing but if he is there you’ve got to jerk him up and out as soon as possible.

If you pitch that tube or worm into the top and pick up on it and it feels spongy or like it’s stuck in grass then set the hook and crank those handles as you’ll have on a few seconds to pry him from the structure.

If the lake has a series of brush tops, stumps or lay downs and the bass are in them just go from structure to structure and hit the sweet spots and you just might have the trip of a lifetime. It’s almost unbelievable to catch 5- to 7-pound bass on each top but I have spent many hot days catching one lunker bass after another once I’ve located their pattern.

Too hot to fish? I think not. You can fish early and late, and beat the heat, or you can hit the sweet spots and tag a few lunker bass and then head home to the AC! But if you bypass fishing in this hot weather, you’re sure to miss some of the best fishing of the year.

Call Mike Giles at 601-917-3898 or email mikegiles18@comast.net.

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