I just had a recent conversation with Regan Thompson who operates Mashkinonje Lodge on Nipissing’s West Arm about the smallmouth bass fishing there. Regan said that one day they’ll find a whole bunch of bass in a certain area, than the next day they are gone and he has to find them again. His question was, “Do smallmouth migrate like walleye through the seasons?” My answer, “Definitely!”
Smallmouth migrate into shallow water in the spring to spawn. After spawning they disperse throughout a lake and feed deep and shallow. When the water temperature and the “photo-period” (relationship of day vs. night), is similar to the spring conditions, Samllmouth move shallow again but only this time not two spawn, but to feed heavily before the water temperatures plummet, their food source migrates to deeper water or hibernates and eventually the smallmouth retreat to deeper water and become very lethargic. This period in early Sept. is an excellent time to intercept Smallmouth bass as they migrate shallower and can be caught on a variety of soft-plastic lures, crankbaits, twitch-baits and especially topwater…enjoy!