SA Bass

CLASSROOM

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“Night Fishing” Catching bass at night is always an interestin­g topic for me, as not a lot of people actually try and catch them after dark – Hugo Lerm

Catching bass at night is always an interestin­g topic for me, as not a lot of people actually try and catch them after dark. I’ve had some of my best fishing as the sun sets and the moon rises, especially during the spawning months. With night fishing your pressured water often produces good sized fish as they “learn” to feed more actively at night as to not get caught. So when the sun sets the pigs come out to play! The one night I will never forget was during full moon on Bronkhorst­spruit Dam. We were catching decent fish the whole night anywhere and everywhere. The baits did not matter and they were hungry!

The first few fish I caught was when I was a young lad camping and fishing for carp. One evening I got really bored by just sitting and waiting, so I picked up my rod with a plastic still tied on from the days fishing and targeted a grass patch where I had caught a bass during the day. It was not long when I felt the distinctiv­e “tap” on the line and the fish was on. I was amazed and got a few more that night. From there on, I would always try and make a few casts when everyone else is sleeping and dreaming of the catch of a lifetime while I am actually doing it.

Here is my take on the baits I use at night:

Topwater baits - Zara Spooks for the active fish and a nice loud popper for the less active and curious fish. They will at times miss the bait if its fished too fast so slow down a bit more than what you would be fishing it during the day.

Jerkbaits - They work especially well when the bass are feeding in the shallows. Cast and jerk, they will smash it!

Soft plastics - I have caught on most baits in the same way and colours as I would use during the day. The key is to slow down and create extra vibration and noises so do not forget your rattles and scents.

Spinnerbai­ts - The vibration is most probably the biggest reason for the bass to eat it, but the moon also creates some flash for the bass to home in on.

I would really urge our readers to have a go next time when you are camping over and to experience the thrill of catching a night-time bass. Tight lines and don’t let the bedbugs bite!

People always ask: “What baits do I use at night?” Here are some of my tips and techniques for fishing in the dark. THE BEST TIME TO FlSH AT NIGHT IS DURING FULL MOON 4HIS IS not only the time that they are more active at night, but it also makes it possible to see where you are fishing. This does not mean they do not feed on other nights but your chances are better to catch a lot of fish. MAKE SURE YOU FOLLOW YOUR LOCAL WATER RULES AND regulation­s and make sure you are allowed on the water. Some waters have a “no boats after dark” rule. Have your lights on and always be safe. Don’t go racing to your spots. FISH WATERS AND AREAS THAT YOU KNOW WELL TO PREVENT hitting rocks, trees and even jetties. KEEP YOUR HEADLAMP CLOSE AT HAND A MASK TO KEEP YOU WARM DURING THE COLD HOURS OF THE morning is always welcome. CHECK YOUR WEATHER FORECAST 9OU DO NOT WANT TO GET caught in a storm or serious wind in the dark. THE FlSH DO NOT SCARE SO EASILY AND YOU DO NOT NEED TO make very long casts. FISH AREAS WHERE THERE ARE LIGHTS CLOSE TO THE WATER This attracts insects such as moths and miggies. These, in turn attract small fish, and then the bass follow.

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