SA Bass

CLASSROOM

- >> Calman Grobler & Dirk Smith*

“Bass Fishing in Summer Time” Summer fishing in my opinion is one of the best times of the year to pack the boat and head of to your favourite fishing spot to look for the post spawning fish – Calman Grobler & Dirk Smith

Summer fishing in my opinion is one of the best times of the year to pack the boat and head of to your favourite fishing spot to look for the post spawning fish. It is the ideal opportunit­y to target the aggressive fish on reaction lures.

The sun is up early and goes down very late, ensuring more time on the water and a great opportunit­y to catch that big one.

The bass are very active as a lot of fish have spawned, however, it can still be challengin­g at times to catch them with factors such as weather conditions, boat traffic or abundance of bait fish. The right approach is the key. I always start off by searching for active fish, by fishing fast with reaction lures.

Early morning

I like to start the day searching for active fish with reaction baits, like Horny Toads, Zara Spooks and twitching weightless flukes in shallow water. Usually the fry hides in the shallows as the water is still cool in the mornings; this attracts feeding fish and anglers. On a recent trip to Bronkhorst­spruit Dam we had one of our best days on the water using this pattern. My partner and I left home, extremely excited, at 04:00 and had lines in the water by 05:15. We targeted a bank at the yacht club that had some underwater grass patches. We started off fishing top water with Zara Spooks and within the second cast I was on with a nice sized fish. A top tip to remember; when a fish short strikes your lure, keep using the same action, or your partner needs to put his lure (or a different lure) in that same area. The same fish will often come back and smash the lure.

We went on to catch quite a few decent sized fish on the top water lures. There is no better bite than a surface bite early in the morning to get the adrenalin pumping.

Mid-morning (9:00)

Usually, if the wind picks up, I like to switch to spinnerbai­ts, jerkbaits and if the structure allows it, crankbaits. This was also the case at Bronkies. We started to target the deeper water just off the edge of the grass line in about 6ft of water with spinnerbai­ts and went on catching more than forty fish. We covered a lot of water by constantly casting our lures next to one another. Different

types and colour spinnerbai­ts (white/chartreuse with gold Colorado blades worked well), or different retrieving speeds can often make a difference in getting fish to react. A helpful way to get more hook ups is to add a trailer hook.

Midday (12:00)

During midday, the fishing normally slows down due to heat and in some cases boat traffic. The fish tend to head deeper in search of cooler water. That’s the time of day I normally slow down my approach and prefer to use a light Mojo rig; Texas rig or my favourite, the drop-shot rig.

I like to use these rigs along with soft plastic baits like junior flukes, grubs and paddle tails. A Junebug fluke on a light Mojo rig (8lb line, depending on structure) does work well and is often my preferred method when the bites are few and far between.

Once again this paid off on our fishing trip at Bronkhorst­spruit Dam as it often does on most dams. We caught a couple of fish on the abovementi­oned and continued having fun throughout the day.

Late afternoon

Depending on the weather conditions, I often repeat the same pattern as in early or mid morning. I always make sure to cover a lot of water and not stick to a spot for too long, unless you find an area or a pattern that requires it.

Summer fish tend to move around looking for schools of bait fish and you need to be there to present your lure to catch the next big one.

This is the pattern that I like to follow during summer months in most local dams, especially after a good spawn.

Happy New Year and Enjoy your fishing!

*Calman Grobler and Dirk Smith are competitiv­e FLW tournament anglers who have fish the SA BASS Cast-for-Cash Tournament Trial for many years and had many podium standings.

 ??  ?? Dirk Smith
Dirk Smith
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 ??  ?? Calman Grobler
Calman Grobler

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