One of the hardest things about fishing for Largemouth is finding them. Everything from water temperature, air temperature, weather, season, time of day, and even the moon phase play important roles in locating Largemouth. Then when you think you have located some fish, getting them to bite can be another thing in itself.
Your best bet is to start very early in the day or late in the afternoon. Largemouth Bass tend to avoid direct bright sunlight and most fish are caught when the light is low or when the sky is overcast. Look for man-made or natural structure. Look for a dock, a tree, a branch, a rock, or a point of land on a mostly straight bank. Anything that stands out as something different will usually hold fish. Docks are also a great place to find bass. Just look for anything that will give small baitfish a place to hide or that will provide some shade for the bass to rest in, and you will be off to a good start.
If you are fishing from a boat, look for submerged structure with your fishfinder. Watch for stumps, ledges, rock piles, quick drop offs, or even schools of baitfish. Watch the surface for bass chasing minnows or shad or watch for birds diving into the water. This could mean that there is some bait around and the bass might be underneath the bait chasing them up to the surface. Bridge pilings are usually a good place to check for a few bass, also.
How to catch Largemouth Bass
Patterns? When you hear the term pattern used by bass fishermen they are not talking about the design of the lure that they are using. They are referring to the conditions that put fish in the boat. This is usually two things; the location of the bass and the technique used to get them to bite. The pattern will change from day to day and sometimes several times during a single day. If you have good luck on a stretch of bank that has lily pads and tree branches sticking up through them and the fish suddenly stop biting, chances are good that if you find some similar conditions elsewhere you will find active fish again. This is a pattern.
When looking for feeding bass, most anglers use some type of fast moving lure like a crankbait or a spinnerbait. These types of baits enable you to cover large areas quickly. Work the bait thoroughly but keep moving till you find some feeding fish. When you get a bass to hit, slow down and keep as quiet as possible. Bass are pretty sensitive to noise and you do not want to spook them before you have some fun catching a few.
If the bite stops after you get a few fish to the boat, change lures according to the situation and give them something else to look at. If the bite is over, note the exact location and the structure conditions in that area. Then try to find another area with similar conditions and chances are good that the fish will be there also. This is not a foolproof way of finding bass, but it does work quite often. Also remember that the pattern will probably work the following day around the same time if the weather has not changed too much.
Some last minute tips
If you have more that one rod, rig up a few different baits on extra rods. That way you do not have to keep retying when the action is on. I especially like to keep one rod rigged “Texas Style”, with a worm when fishing a fast bait. If I get a hit but miss the hook set, I throw back with a worm and work it slowly back through the strike zone.
Try keeping a logbook of your fishing. Note the season, times, weather, location, bait used, water temperature and clarity. Then repeat your successful pattern next time and see if you get the same good results. I bet you will. Be courteous to other fishermen. If you see someone in a boat working a bank, do not pull your boat in front of them and start fishing. Pull in where they have already been and start your fishing there. Follow them at a polite distance. You would want the same done to you.
Please practice catch and release whenever possible and remember the large fish do not taste any better than a medium or small one. Take a picture and let the trophies live for you and others to catch and enjoy later. Be safe and have fun!