Fish Reaction Baits with a Steady Retrieve
Just like us, fish don't see as well in the dark. This means that as the sun goes down and there is less light piercing the water, bass rely less on their eyesight and more on non-visual senses to hunt. To grab their attention and help them locate your bait, use lures that makes some noise and creates some vibration in the water. Some of the best options to throw at night time include:
While Curly-Tailed-Worms are not strictly speaking a reaction bait, they are a staple when catching bass at night. The big silhouette they create coupled with the noise and vibration from their tail helps bass locate this presentation at night.
In terms of your retrieve, keep it slow and steady. Keeping the bait moving consistently without burning it in too fast gives the fish time to locate your lure and smash it.
The Darker it is, the Darker the Bait
Choose the color of your bait based on the light conditions. If the moon is dim/new, stick to dark colors like black or blue. For some reason this causes the bait to create a more prominent silhouette/profile underwater and helps bass locate it. If you are fishing under a full, bright moon bass will have better visibility and are more likely to be drawn to natural colors such as green pumpkin or watermelon. Keep in mind that this is a general rule of thumb, you definitely want to be experimenting with your colors as you go to see what gets you the most bites.
Return to Spots Where you have Caught Before
It goes without saying that you don’t really want to be trying to explore the lake and find new spots when it is dark. Plan out your night fishing session before and plot out spots that you have caught fish at before. Chances are these pieces of cover hold fish at night as well as during the day and bass will be feeding in these spots.
Try and Stay Quiet
Once other anglers, recreational boaters and everyone else making noise on the lake during the day leave, bass become more sensitive to each individual sound. If you are fishing off a boat, loud stamps on the floor, closing tackle boxes and loud voices will be more likely to spook fish than during the day. To give yourself the best chance of catching bass at night, try your best to stay quiet and prevent any unnecessary noises, especially if you are approaching a fishing spot.
Wear a Headlamp
The first thing you should pack when preparing for a night fishing session is a headlamp. Trust me on this one, there is nothing more frustrating than trying to tie a knot when you cannot see, or casting at cover you can barely make out 15 feet away from you and getting stuck in a brush pile (can you tell I speak from experience?). Wearing a headlamp makes fishing at night a much, much more pleasant experience.
If you have never fished for bass at night before, you really need to give it a go. It opens up a whole new world of summer bass fishing and puts you in a position to catch big bass that may not have even looked at your lures during the day. Keep these tips in mind and you may well catch your PB this Summer under the moonlight!