Bass are still spawning in many of the lakes across the Carolinas, and that adds the element of sight to bass fishing like no other time of year. And while it’s often easy to spot the beds – and even the bass – it’s not always as easy to convince them to bite. This can be frustrating, but Gary Abernethy of Asheville said one trick has helped him land countless bass this time of year.

“This time of year, sometimes you have to pester the fish more than anything else when you find them on the bed. It’s not usually hunger or reaction that pushes these fish into biting, so when that’s the case, you can still catch them if you bug them enough,” he said.

Abernethy likes to toss a jig or soft plastic creature bait past the bed, then watch the fish’s reaction as he works the lure into the bed. Often, the fish will hover above it, looking directly at the lure, but not striking it. When that happens, Abernethy sets the rod down in his boat, allowing the lure to stay in the bed.

He then casts another lure out and reels it into the bed. If the fish doesn’t take it, he again sets his rod down while the second lure joins the first one in the fish’s bed. He makes a cast with a third lure, works it the same way, and so on.

Abernethy said it’s not uncommon for him to have five or more lures sitting in the fish’s bed before he finally convinces the bass to bite. He may try different types of lures, different sizes, and different colors, but he doesn’t think any of that matters to the fish. 

“The more crowded you can get the bed, the more likely the fish is to break down and finally bite,” said Abernethy.