Largemouth Bass Tips for Fall

During the summer months, Largemouth Bass fishing in Canada gives us all chances of “mega-days”, in where the fish at any given moment, can turn on and chow down at an insane pace. Move on to the fall, however, and the cold water can have a different influence on the exact same creature. That said, the rods & reels need not be put away just yet. I love fishing for Largemouth in the fall (see my previous blogs on this titled October Quinte Largemouth as well as A Giant For A Buddy ). It’s very satisfying to connect with these beasts when the water drops into the mid-’60s and colder. That being said, I have a few Largemouth Bass Tips for you below.

WEED COVER

My main pattern is fishing near healthy, green weeds in less than 10 feet of water. I will literally cover hundreds of yards of good-looking weed areas seeking out that sweet spot. If found, you’ll get more than one fish… that’s pretty much a guarantee. I’m assuming baitfish congregate in certain areas of weedbeds and the local Largemouth aren’t far away.

If you can find rocks and or boulders in and amongst the lush green vegetation, that’s the ultimate winning combo.

So far in my fall fishing Largemouth life, I’ve yet to catch fish deep, as in the 20-foot range. I know they exist, but I’ve been too busy looking for shallower fish. The unfortunate aspect of the Canadian Bass season is, it’s way too short. So, before you know it, a period like the Fall is done and gone!

Below are my Go-To baits to find and hopefully then clean up on these cold-skinned, green beauties.

SPINNERBAITS

One of my favorite late September, right through October and into the first bit of November Largemouth tactics is to throw a tandem spin, Colorado bladed spinnerbait. I retrieve it at a nice slow to medium pace. I like a bait called a Stanley Wedge, which had a big rear Colorado blade (I call it a thumper) which gives off great vibrations especially at slow retrieve speeds. I’m not sure if you can still buy them (the Colorado Version that is) but if not, the Vibra-Shaft is a good alternative. Another good one is the Drop Dead Fred, it’s a great lift and drop bait as well.

If you are in doubt that Spinnerbaits work at this time of the year then check out this beast that I caught years back on November 2 of 2011, while fishing the Muskoka area of Ontario. In the video, I state the water temps… and it’s cold for Buckets!

That fish hit the scales at 5lb 13oz making it my biggest fall fish as well as my biggest Spinnerbait fish in Canada. By having the confidence in my bait and especially my slow “lift and drop” retrieve, I managed a fantastic fish.

Incidentally, I always have wondered if that fish would have bit on a Jig and Pig or a creature. It doesn’t matter, but I do wonder.

SHALLOW CRANKBAITS

Another effective fall Largemouth bait is a Squarebill Crankbait. As long as you are fishing relatively shallow water (yes some Canadian Largemouth stay shallow when the water is in the 50’s). I normally like a 2.5 sized version and find you don’t necessarily need an expensive lure. A Strike King KVD 2.5 or Storm Arashi Silent Square are great choices.

Deeper cranks will work as well, but that’s a whole different ballgame that I’m still experimenting with and will hopefully cover in a future blog.

PLASTICS

If plastics are your deal, then creature or beaver style baits rock. Yamamoto has an array of creature baits that work year-round and do really well in the fall. Reaction Innovations Beaver series works great as well. I like the normal 4.2 Sweet Beaver the best. Megastrike makes a killer bait that totally rules in the early fall called a Megabug. The 4.5” black/blue, crawdad, and red shad are my picks.

JIGS

Often there’s a great jig bite in the fall for Largemouth. When this happens, it’s my favorite… but it doesn’t happen often enough for me (probably because I like cranking and SP baiting so much in autumn. When the water drops out of the 70’s for the remainder of the season, a ½ or 5/8-ounce sized jig with a nice fat trailer will rock the fish. Triple Rattle Back (I’ve used these for years and they are a great fall jig) are a great full-sized jig. My go-to color is black/blue… duh!

As the water temps drop, I size down to a 3/8 or a “mini/finesse” style in the ½ ounce range. The smaller profile can pick up a few extra bites. A couple of good jig choices are Punisher Jigs (all of their jig styles work well) and Z Man Power Finesse Jigs . Beware though, finesse style jigs sometimes have a lighter gauged hook, so that “power” hookset with braid needs to be tamed down a touch.

Lastly, if you’re fishing a rocky area, then consider a football head style jig.

UNCLE NED

For the ultimate in cold-water finesse Largemouth, my buddies and I have been experimenting with the Ned Rig. When push comes to shove, this little dude can catch em’.  We’ve found that the Z Man TRD is the best so far because of its buoyancy factor. It literally stands straight up off the bottom.

OTHER BAITS

Obviously, the above-mentioned baits aren’t the only ones that work in the fall. I’ve caught Largemouth on soft stick worms, frogs and even topwater baits. That said, these listed are my favorites… so far.

If you have any suggestions as to your favorite late-season baits/presentations/patterns for Largemouth, then please leave me a comment below. Fish pics too!

I’m telling you, if you’re a Canadian bass angler and your boat is put away sometime in September, you’re not taking advantage of a great, end of the season fishery.

In my opinion, catching Largemouth Bass well into the fall is the most satisfying time of the entire season. There’s a sense of accomplishment that overwhelms me when I connect with this “warm-water” species in water temps of low 60’s, through the 50’ and right across the 40’s… oh, and by the way, I’ve even caught em’ when the water hit’s the 30’s! That’s a chilly Bass!

 

Pete

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