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  Article 34...

Fishing Spring Rains
By Chad  Brauer

February 2004

There is perhaps no more critical time to pay close attention to water temperature than during the transition from winter to spring. This is the time when bass move from their winter haunts to their spawning grounds. Much of this migration is governed by the days getting longer, but sudden increases in water temperatures can speed up the process. Run-off from warm spring rains can be one of these times.

The arrival of heavy spring rains does not always make it fun to be on the water but they often bring some good fishing. The warmer rain water increases water temperatures in shallower waters of the coves and creeks the bass want to move into for the spawn. From this fact alone, bass will often move quickly into these areas where the run-off is coming in. Baitfish will make this same move, making these areas even more attractive to the bass. The stained water that these rains bring also tends to move bass shallower as well even in cold water temperatures. Rising water levels are also a usual result of the rains as well, contributing to the thinner water migration.
At a recent tournament at Smith Lake, Alabama, we experienced these same conditions. During practice water temperatures were between 41 and 45 degrees. Most of the bass were along steep bluff banks between 10 to 25 feet deep. I could get quite a few bites casting a ½ ounce Chameleon Craw Strike King Pro Model jig. The first tournament day brought over 5 inches of rain. Lake levels rose over 4 feet, waters went from clear to stained and muddy, and water temperatures in pockets where run-off was coming in went from 45 to 51 degrees. These pockets are where I fished the second tournament day, not fishing deep, but in less than 4 feet of water. These conditions will also bring in what I call saw-dust piles, the log jams and trash piles in the backs of pockets. These areas are always early spring bass magnets.

Even though spring rains mean wet days on the water, the good bass fishing

 

 
 









 

 

 

  they can bring is worth it. Pay attention to the water temperature changes and look for the warming water where the run-off is coming into the lake. These areas will bring bass shallow quicker than others and with the warmer temperatures the bass will be more active and easier to catch.
 
 
 

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