Catching Bass During Spring Cold Fronts
Spring cold fronts have reached many regions in America, and warm days have become the minority. Spring has been unseasonably cool and consequently, bass fishing has gotten confusing. If bass should be spawning in your neck of the woods but are nowhere to be found here’s an idea to try: go after them like they are in the prespawn mode.
Bass will begin spawning as the water temperature reaches the upper 50’s, but 60 degrees is the ideal temperature. If the water attained this range, bass surely made their way to their spawning grounds, but if a spring cold front knocked the temperature down several degrees, a conundrum developed. Some bass will stay committed to their beds, but most seem to disappear.
This is time to think back where and how you caught them before the warmup. The mouths of channels where the first wave of spawning takes place is always an excellent choice during the prespawn, and it can once become the epicenter of big bass during cold fronts.
Many bass will leave the channels and hang out at the first drop off outside it. Depth is relative. If the first drop outside the channel goes from 2 to 5 feet with some vegetation present, this can hold the motherlode. If it drops from 4 to 20, they will scatter along that break.
3 Baits to Catch Bass during Spring Cold Fronts
This is an excellent choice throughout the prespawn phase especially in dark water. The violent vibration it wields makes it easy for aggressive bass to find. This vibration is also what makes it an attractive choice during cold fronts. Retrieve the bait parallel to the breakline. Employ a slow retrieve – just fast enough to feel the vibration. It is important to keep it at the bottom.
Spring cold fronts are often accompanied by strong north winds, and regardless of water clarity, the vibration makes it easy for bass to track. It also coaxes reaction bites.
Made famous by Paul Elias in 2011, this rig is a proven winner on waterways with shad prevalent, but during spring cold fronts shad are not a necessity. Not only are the bass hanging out in these spots, but so are bluegill who are looking to steal the bass’ eggs when they spawn. Bluegill tend to group together in small number now, which makes the Alabama Rig a realistic replication. The same retrieve with the bladed jig applies and for the same reasons. Use as many baits as allowed by state regulations, but also select a rig with extra blades. This is especially helpful in sunny conditions.
Next to the soft stickbait, this may be the ultimate do-nothing bait. The advantage over the stickbait, is that it’s weighted, gets on the bottom, and stays on the bottom. This can really shine when the bass are not eating more active baits. Again, retrieving it parallel to the breakline is best. Give it little action: shake the rod with slack line. Bites are often soft and hard to detect. Many times, the line will begin moving before feeling the fish. Use the lightest weight possible. In most scenarios, 1/8-ounce models are preferred, but if fishing deep water or in strong winds, go up to 3/16 or ¼.
If the channel has an average depth of at least 5 feet, the bass will likely stay put. Instead of leaving, they will either suspend in the middle or go to the depths. A good graph should reveal their depth.
Dreaded spring cold fronts are dreaded for good reason, but fish can still be caught. However, it is a safe bet that the number of bites will be down. Still, lunker-sized bass can still be caught.
If you have a favorite technique or bait during spring cold fronts, please share them below in the comments!