Fall Time Bass Fishing
The weather starts getting cooler, the leaves start changing colours and then most people start thinking about putting the boats away and getting ready for ice fishing. Well, the fall time is a great time of year to catch some monster bass. Both small and largemouth are active and are strapping on the feed bag for the long winter months. One of my favourite lakes in Eastern Ontario is Big Rideau Lake.
Big Rideau Lake is part of the Rideau system which runs from Ottawa all the way to Kingston. The section that Iâ€™m talking about in this system is between Portland and Smiths Falls. This past two weekends (Oct 16th & 23rd) I was out, the sun was shining, the lake was calm and the bass didnâ€™t disappoint. We were fishing in 25- 40 feet of water using 8 lbs fluorocarbon on 6â€™9â€ Med action spinning gear. The technique of choice is a drop shot. Using ½ oz pencil weights with a 1/0 circle hook made it possible to catch fish like these.
Water temperatures are in the mid to low 50s right now making the smallmouth rather aggressive. In a matter of 4 hours we landed over 20 decent size smallmouth. The majority of the smallmouths were coming off rocks with little to no weed cover what so ever. As we were using our drop shots you can feel the bottom and the minute that we found weeds the bite would stop. We would continue around the rock hump and you can feel only the bottom the bass were there. Using a heavy drop shot weight, in our case ½ oz it helped us to keep that weight on the bottom to feel the contours of the structure we were fishing. The key to a successful drop shot was for the weight to have constant contact with the bottom. You didnâ€™t want to hop that weight along. We wanted to only move the bait and not the weight. When we were able to do that, along with being away from the weeds is when the action got hot.
However, smallmouth are not the only bass that are getting ready for the winter. Largemouth bass are feeding as well. This one was caught on a crawfish type bait on a shakey head.
The 3 lbs largemouth came from 20 feet of water just off a deep weed line. Once again finesse fishing is what used to catch this one. 3/8 oz shakey jig head on a craw type bait was the ticket. The slow subtle fall of the bait is what trigger this one the bite. Also, this time of year the largemouth will be cruising the shallows. If you can find some weeds, pads etc. donâ€™t be afraid to get in there with a frog or flipping jig to try and get those largemouths out of cover.
For more information about Big Rideau Lake or to book a trip, contact Peter Larmand at www.peterlarmand.com