June 23, 2014 Share

Heat Front Fishing—Cold Front

Originally Published on Aug 18, 2011 “From the Docks” NBC Sports

Yesterday I received a package from Blue Heron, a company that handles PR for a number of outdoor companies including Berkley. Inside was a package of one on my favorite bass baits, the Chigger Craw, now available in the Jumbo five-inch size.

I can’t wait to give these baits a shot in the coming weeks.

For now, however, I am going to stick with some smaller offerings as the lakes in many areas are so hot that fish like bass are actually acting more like we’re battling a cold front. Does the term heat front fishing exist? If not, it does now.

All fish species have their preferred temperature changes and when water temps drop below or rise above the range that a given species requires, fish respond in predictable ways. For example, largemouth bass prefer water temps between 68 and 78 degrees while smallmouth bass prefer 67 to 71-degree water. When water temps rise above these levels, fish begin to seek out areas of cooler water, usually moving deeper, but some seek shelter near heavy cover offering shade and protection.

Catching fish in extremely warm water often requires anglers to down size their offerings and to go to a slower retrieve, two strategies that also work when temperature drop suddenly.

With fall just around the corner, however, we’ll begin to see temps start to drop and fish activity begin to pick up, and that’s when oversized baits can really shine…and why I am not going to share my new Jumbo Chigger Craws with anyone.