Thursday, February 25, 2010

Night Time Fun

One thing I really enjoyed a lot as a young kid was night fishing for bass off of a dock. As I was growing, I guess it was more important to get some shut eye instead of fishing. Now that I am taking up fishing in much more serious manner, it has once again, become one of my favorite things to do. The reason I enjoy night fishing so much is because it always turns out to be very exciting and productive. That was especially true this past summer.

When you fish during the day, bass can see all your moves and as a fisherman you need to be as natural as possible and be quiet and stealthy. This means we need to be invisible by using a trolling motor or an anchor instead of stirring up the water. Bass can see the action of your lures and the colours that you have chosen.

At night bass feel secure under the cover of darkness. Night fishing hides our mistakes and makes it easier to trick them with our devious ways. At night they don’t see but they are willing to accept baits even if they don’t look or feel natural. Their color vision goes down at night and you need to make the strongest presentation to them. The best color at night is black because it’s presents the darkest, most contrasting effect, and a silhouette so to speak. Another factor to watch out for at night is the current moon phase.

Even when the stars and moon are out there is still enough light to see what you are doing. After you have done it long enough, you will realize that when you reel your lure in and you raise your rod tip up and hold it up to the sky, you can see how far your bait is hanging off the end of your rod, and whether or not you are all tangled up. Believe me that has happened many times.

This past summer all the above factors worked out quite nicely for me on Rice Lake. The first case was at the beginning of August of 2009, less than 2 days after the full moon (96% Waning Gibbous).

The second case was in early October of 2009, less than 2 days before the full moon (97% Waxing Gibbous). Both of these smallmouth bass were caught using a Jitterbug surface lure. There is something about fishing in the dead calm of night and listening to the distinctive gurgling sounds the Jitterbug makes as it paddles across the surface, just waiting for a splash and explosion from an unsuspecting fish. My best luck has been around midnight at this time of year. By that time of night the water has settled down and is completely calm and the fish have started to feed. On both occasions I remember feeling a thump and you felt weight on the end of the line and you crank back and set the hook and enjoy the fight and memory of a lifetime.

Night fishing for bass will be something I continue to do for many years to come.

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