BassWestUSA - January/February, 2011, Page 67

was on me! Adjusting - that is the key to it all. It’s the same prin- ciple when shing with arti cial worms. In the morning, you may be catching sh until sunlight spills over the entire area and then, of course – where did they go? Fish those worms deeper or in heavier cover. I hope I am getting my point across here. Adapt to your surroundings. There are many reasons why bass feed or just plain shut off. One reason is time of year, as bass adjust their feeding cycles to the different seasons. Although most of us plan our shing sea- sons based on the months of the year, that’s okay but that gives you the pig, not the farm. The farm, what? Yes, the farm, this is the number two thing to remember - it’s all about water tempera- ture. It is like a stop and go sign because temperature activates sh to feed and can also shut them down. It’s not always what month of the year it is. An example, in California during January and February bass are at a slower pace, just barely active whereas Florida bass are starting to migrate to shallower water because the temperature of the water is warmer there. The warmer the water temperature gets, the more active the bass will be until it gets too warm. If the water gets too hot, then Mr. Bass just doesn’t want to move too far for his food. Oh he will eat, he just doesn’t want to break

out in a sweat! My biggest piece of advice and a good rule of thumb, when it comes to water temperature and bass shing, when the water is cold, slow down on your techniques and as the season changes and your water temperature begins to rise, speed up. Simple! Don’t overthink it. Let’s nish on the number one thing that in uences where did they go - the food source. I cannot tell you how many times I have watched anglers toss a bait out during a speci c time of the year, however that bait doesn’t resemble the available food source that Mr. Bass has been dining on. “Hey, I’ve been eating craw- dads, who ordered the frog?” Yes, the angler will catch a couple of sh, by luck. A lot of times, food source is based upon tempera- ture. Lizards, frogs, snakes, to name a few become more active in spring when the outside temperature is warmer. Remember the old saying, match the hatch. If you see a bunch of minnows, throw something that looks like them. See those blackbirds along the shoreline gathering twigs to build their nests and snaring bugs to feed their young? Then you throw a top water bait in the same area. On the other hand, you could have the best looking area on the lake, but if there is no food for the bass, you are just whipping the water. Look around you to see the things we have been talk- ing about. If there is food, Mr. Bass will be near. I am going to throw you a curve ball now. Everything I men- tioned is based on consistent weather patterns. One thing we cannot count on is Mother Nature and the elements. Climate changes of all kinds affect the bass and how they will feed. Those at calm days can be some of your worst shing days. It all depends. Where did they go? Remember, sh have ns and that is why we chase them! This is Randy Pringle The Fishing Instructor and let’s get on those sh! BW

January/February 2011