_16B25131.FISH the fly:
This is probably one of the most important elements to having more success
bass fishing, it’s also the number one thing I see most people do incorrectly. I
know it’s easy to get into the “strip…strip…strip” rhythm, but as a fisheries
biologist who spends an unreal amount of time looking at baitfish, I can tell
you for certain that animals rarely ever move like this. I’ll change up my
retrieve constantly bass fishing. I’ll add long pauses, short fast strips, long
slow strips all in the same retrieve. Baitfish and other prey animals tend to
do a lot of darting and you’re retrieve should reflect this.Bass 52. Choose the correct gear:
This is one of the most overlooked elements in bass fishing. You need to be
fishing the right rod for the right situations. We use anywhere from a 6-8
weight rods depending on the size of bug we are throwing, and how much
vegetation is in the body of water we are fishing. The amount of vegetation is
key because bass love to peel into reeds, grasses, algae or any other
vegetation around them when hooked and you’ll want a rod with a stronger
backbone to steer them out of this.Bass 2In addition to choosing the correct rod, the line you choose with your set up
is crucial, I personally believe that the line is the most important and most
underrated part of your fishing set up. You need to have more than just your
“all-arounder” trout line when bass fishing. You’ll be throwing bigger bugs
that require a line with an aggressive front taper and large head to turn over
the flies.

Bass 4
3. Offer a substantial meal:
This is a very important element to bass fishing. I usually never fish flies
under 3 inches when bass fishing and usually I’m closer to 6 inches with my
bass flies. This is for a couple reasons. Bass absolutely inhale food, and they
will inhale your fly. I’ve seen dozens of pictures of guys with small poppers or
streamers lodged in the gills or deep in the gut of bass, and while these are
extremely hardy fish they still deserve to be treated with respect and
hooking a fish in the gills will most likely result in mortality. The other main
reason I fish big flies for bass is that they are major predators! They
spend the majority of their year eating baitfish well over 2 inches. I’m
fortunate enough to have a bass pond out my window and this year I
witnessed one of the larger bass in the pond take a gosling. These fish are
opportunistic and will gladly take a shot at what appears to be a high-calorie
offering.

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4. Read your surroundings
Just like on your favorite trout stream you need to be able to read the water,
even on a lake or pond. Fish around structures, sunken logs, rocks, and even pieces of trash like tires or abandoned shopping carts can work. You also should pay attention to vegetation. Not all grasses hold fish. If you watch the bait chucking bass fisherman on TV they understand this perfectly. You won’t see them fishing those uniformly growing grass beds that look like a manicured lawn. They do fish around the grass beds that look like they had a bad hair day, and the transition zones leading up to the grass line. If you
really want to get nerdy about it, different species of grasses respire (take up
oxygen) at different rates than other species. Knowing your aquatic
vegetation will help you understand what grasses hold fish and what grasses
don’t.

Bass 1

5. Time of day is crucial
This one is pretty simple, just like in trout fishing, bass fishing can be hot or
cold and the time of day can determine this. In the dog days of summer you’ll
want to be on the water either early morning or late evening (personally I
prefer late evenings), and during the colder months, the exact opposite tends
to be true.

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Photo @c_terch

Writing from Meat Market Flies, a group of streamer tying junkies that tie the most creative and highest quality flies in the industry. Give them a follow @meatmarketflies and check out their website https://meatmarketflies.com/ to purchase some of their killer patterns.

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