Here are some winter smallmouth bass fishing tips that anglers can use to have more productive fishing trips this winter. While winter smallmouth bass fishing can be tough for the angler due to the miserable conditions, the smallies seem to thrive in it and the fishing can be fast and productive. In fact, the fishing is often so good that almost any lure or technique will succeed if the angler can stay warm and on the water.
Fishermen and fisherwomen need to dress warmly for winter smallmouth fishing. With cold wind and the possibility of cold rain, snow, or sleet, staying warm is important for safety as well as comfort that will allow for better fishing. Waterproof gloves that provide flexibility are almost mandatory in winter.
Though getting wet is just part of fishing most times of the year, it can be dangerous during winter. Having extra clothes along in a waterproof container as well as the needed materials to quickly start a fire can be a life saver in frigid conditions. Those fishing in boats should wear a life vest as well as swimming will be difficult as shock is likely to set in quickly from the freezing water. Having a friend along on any trips in a boat is a good idea as well.
Small Line and Lures
Wintertime water is often crystal clear making it easy for the smallmouth to spot line or unrealistic lures. Fishing with thinner line that is more difficult to see and small lures can often increase the catch in winter. While clear water means smallies will be found deep most of the year, the reduced sunlight and overcast conditions common in winter may cause smallmouths to stay shallower.
Drifting live minnows can be deadly this time of year. As small prey fish struggle with the colder conditions, smallmouth and other predators will readily feed upon them. Be careful that your minnows don’t die in the cold weather before they can be used.
Tube and creature baits that can be slowly twitched and worked along the bottoms can also catch a lot of winter smallmouths. An angler can work these lures from rocky shorelines out into deeper water to find where the smallmouths are feeding.