During the past few weeks, you may have wanted to hit the lake for a day of fishing, but before you even made it to the garage to hook up the boat, the sweat dripping off your forehead convinced you to stay at home in your air conditioning. You may have figured that with air and water temperatures so high, the fish would not be biting, but there is another option that allows you to fish comfortably without risking heat stroke. Fishing at night offers anglers the opportunity to beat the heat and experience some of the best fishing of the year.
When fishermen decide to convert from daytime to nighttime fishing, one of the first things they may want to do is invest in quality black lights and clear blue florescent fishing line. These two pieces of equipment are vital to a successful night of fishing. They allow you to see where you cast and where your line is while you are fighting the big ones into the boat. Another important element of using your black light and florescent line is to watch your line for subtle strikes.
Now that you have your lights and line ready to go, you need to decide what areas of the lake you want to spend your time on. Throughout the hot day, bass concentrate in deeper water where the water temperature is cooler and the oxygen is higher. Once the sun falls, the winds calm and the temperature drops, bass start moving into shallower water to search for food. Contours of the lake you want to focus on are humps, ledges and points. Bass prefer these types of structures because it allows them to move into shallower water with minimum travel. During the day, that might be in 15ft-20ft. At night, they will migrate into 5ft-10ft, but don’t be afraid to experiment with different depths. Depending which end of the lake you are fishing, the thermoclime may be at different depths, which will cause the bass to be at different depths.
The next ingredient to a successful night of fishing is your lure selection. I’m not saying other lures will not work, but here are a few of my favorites that consistently produce. Spinnerbaits starting at weights of 3/8 are my first “go to” bait. I use this bait for one main objective….to find fish. My color preference is usually some combination of black, blue, red and purple. It is a mystery to me why dark colors work at night, but as long as the bass keep biting, I won’t ask questions. When using a spinnerbait, I take long casts and retrieve it in very slowly. My blade of choice is a Colorado blade because of the amount of water it displaces while in motion. It sends off a large vibration that a fish’s lateral line senses to help locate bait and trigger a strike.
After you have located fish in an area, continue fishing with your spinnerbait until the bass stop biting. At that time, you need to slow down with a big worm or jig and fish closer to the bottom. This will attract fish that aren’t active enough to chase down a spinnerbait. For years, I found it hard to fish with 10”-14” worm or ½ – 1oz jigs, but after building confidence by catching many giant bass at night, it’s one of my favorite lures to fish. When using these slow baits, drag them on the bottom slowly or pop them off the bottom working them back to the boat. Once again, I prefer a purple, black, blue or red color and try to use baits that have rattles for more activity.
When it comes to night fishing, these tips will help you become a successful angler, but the most important thing is your safety on the water. When on the water after dark, always wear your life jacket and have your running lights on. Another mandatory piece of equipment is a good flood light to help guide you up and down the lake.
Summertime fishing offers a great opportunity to get out of the heat and catch good numbers of quality bass. If you’re new to night fishing, you may find it a little awkward to be out on a boat at night. However, you will find yourself more comfortable the more you go. You will also find that fishing at night offers a welcome break from jet skiers and pleasure boaters. I’m confident if you invest in the equipment covered in this article and try the techniques explained, you will find a passion for night fishing. If you have any questions or comments, you can contact me at 615-278-6311 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Brian Carper is the owner of Brian Carper Guide Service based in Nashville, TN and a partner of the USA. ClickHERE to learn more.