It’s no big secret—cooler, fall weather offers anglers some outstanding shallow water bass fishing opportunities. While it’s tempting to join the masses and chunk noisy, hard reaction baits, small swimbaits for bass are a great alternative when fishing shallow cover.
By Walker Smith
Re-published with permission from Wired 2 fish
Elite Series pro and 2010 Forrest Wood Cup Champion Kevin Hawk does a lot of damage when fishing small swimbaits in shallow water throughout the fall. Whether he’s targeting pressured bass or battling high barometric pressure, it has quickly become one of his most productive techniques.
The driving factor
We’ve all heard it until we’re blue in the face—it’s important to match the hatch. Although it sounds cliché, this theory holds true in the fall months. As the shad make their migrations to the shallows, bass are usually right behind them. Emulating a bass’ natural food source can produce great results this time of year.
“Small swimbaits are an outstanding imitation of shad because of their tight shimmy and subtle profile,” Hawk said. “The bass will still eat crawfish and other types of forage, but most of them are totally consumed with shad once fall begins.”
Big swimbaits are known for catching big fish, but be careful not to rule out smaller, more subtle swimbaits for quality bites as well. Small swimbaits have the potential to produce both quality and quantity throughout the fall, which is especially helpful for the tournament angler.
On what lake do you plan on using small swimbaits this fall? When have you noticed downsizing your swimbait making the biggest difference? Comment below and let us know!