• Bass Fishing

    The biggest bass are the first ones to make a big move as spawning patterns turn to post-spawn or even summertime.

    May: Time to cover lots of water for bass fishing

    Many bass fisherman do not like the month of May. Many fish are in a post-spawn funk, and fish tend to be scattered. 

    May is actually one of my favorite months, as the challenge of figuring them out becomes more difficult, thus creating a bigger reward. It is often the month of singles — not like singles night, but catching just one fish in an area. They can start schooling later in the month, but often, scattered is the name of the game.

    May 15 at 9:00am
    Topwater plugs like this Spook are great postspawn baits in late May at Kerr Lake.

    Sample Kerr Lake’s postspawn topwater bite in late May

    One of the best postspawn bass bites in late May at Kerr Lake fires up offshore of small islands along the west side of Nutbush Creek between the Hibernia and Henderson Point ramps, and on the lake’s northern shoreline from Eastland to Butchers creeks. 

    May 15 at 7:00am
    Keeping your baitcasting reels in smooth, running order is a key to casting and catching more fish.

    Try “boil-and-oil” cleaning tip for smoother casting

    Keeping reels working smoothly helps increase casting distance and helps bass fishermen catch more fish.

    May 15 at 7:00am
    Brush up on your brush tactics to catch Kerr Lake largemouths in May.

    Beat the bushes for Kerr Lake bass

    After a battle with largemouth bass virus that infected about 40 percent of its population before running its course, John H. Kerr Reservoir’s largemouth bass have recovered, as fishermen discovered the past couple of years. And while the spawn ends for most North Carolina chub chasers on most lakes by the end of April, there’s still plenty of reason to visit John H. Kerr Reservoir, aka Buggs Island, in May.

    May 01 at 7:00am
    Lake Rhodhiss holds some of the biggest stripers in any North Carolina reservoir, and they’re ganged up in the lake’s upper reaches this time of year, holding in deep holes and around current breaks.

    Lake Rhodhiss pothole stripers

    For striped bass ranging from 12 to 30 pounds this month, guide Joe Jobin of Xtreme Striper Fishing (704-240-0165) spends his time on Lake Rhodhiss, playing in the sand and trees from the NC 18 bridge upstream to the mouth of the St. John’s River.

    April 28 at 4:01pm
    In May, guide Joel Richardson keys on Lake Gaston bass that are spawning or have come off the beds and are feeding again.

    How to catch Lake Gaston's bass in May

    In wake of Lake Gaston’s ascension to catfishing fame, it’s important to remember that the 20,500-acre lake along the Virginia border north of Raleigh is still one of the finest bass lakes available during May, according to guide Joel Richardson of Kernersville.  

    April 28 at 3:29pm
    If High Rock Lake gets to full pool during the spring, you can bet some quality largemouth bass are going to head for the buttonwood bushes that dot areas of the lake’s shoreline.

    Water in the bushes equals bass at High Rock Lake

    This month on High Rock Lake, local anglers follow the golden rule. If the water is in the buttonwood bushes, fish the bushes.

    April 28 at 3:26pm
    Bassmaster Elite pro angler Davy Hite said even though his all-time favorite lure is a Buckeye Mop Jig, his favorite springtime lure is a Senko.

    3 ways to make a Senko squirm

    Bass pro Davy Hite of Ninety Six, S.C., makes no bones about the fact that his favorite lure is a Buckeye Mop Jig, but when it comes to springtime fishing for prespawn bass, he’s going to have one lure tied on for sure, and that’s a Senko.

    April 19 at 8:27am
    Some crankbaits work better than others, but if properly tuned, they should all work well.

    Catch more bass on crankbaits with this one tip

    When it comes to fishing with crankbaits, FLW pro David Fritts of Lexington N.C. is about as good as it gets. He would rather fish a crankbait than any other lure, and he has one tip that he said can make everyone a better crankbait angler.

    April 18 at 7:45pm
    Baits designed to catch bass are made in a rainbow of colors, but you only need six or eight different color combinations you have confidence in to meet most fishing needs.

    Time to talk about the best colors for catching bass

    I did a few seminars at fishing and outdoor shows this winter, and one question that I heard quite a few times was, “What are the best colors for crankbaits?”

    April 15 at 9:00am
    With the angler in the front deck of a bass boat concentrating on bedding bass on the bank, an angler on the back deck has the rest of a pocket to fish.

    Back-of-the-boat bedding bass tactics

    Fishing for spawning bass is best from the front of the boat, and while anglers in the back are still competing for a win in a tournament situation, it can be a tough task to deal with. 

    April 15 at 7:00am
    Lake Waccamaw is the largest of a handful of Carolina bay lakes at 9,000 acres, but no one knows how or why it came into being.

    How did Lake Waccamaw come to be?

    While Lake Waccamaw does have a dam, it existed as a lake long before the spillway was built in 1926 to prevent it  from drawing completely down during periods of extreme drought.

    April 15 at 7:00am
    Almost all of Shearon Harris Lake’s creeks are productive in the spring.

    Indentations in the shoreline are magnets for Shearon Harris bass

    Fishing is all about the details, especially the little ones, and it pays to take note of any potential shoreline spots to target.

    April 15 at 7:00am
    Regulations that require fishermen to release all bass between 16 and 20 inches, like this one, has helped build Shearon Harris Lake into one of the Southeast’s top trophy fisheries.

    Shearon Harris’s slot limit has made it a top trophy bass fishery

    For most bass fisherman, the slot limit under which bass at Shearon Harris Lake are managed means little. They’re just  looking to get their line stretched and not keeping bass anyway, so it’s no big deal that you can’t put any bass between 16 and 20 inches in your livewell.

    April 15 at 7:00am
    Bass pro Shane Lehew of Mooresville said spawning fish are not always easy pickings, but they will bite under the right circumstances.

    For North Carolina bass fishermen, April is time to get ready for bed

    Anglers see it, bass feel it and nature signals the change. The sun and warmer temperatures are here, and that means bass are headed to the bank to commence the yearly spawn. Not every bass in a given lake decides to make the move at the same time, but instead, waves of bass will flood the shallows looking to make a bed and begin spawning.

    April 01 at 7:00am
    B.J. Gaither caught this nice Lake Waccamaw largemouth bass last spring as fish moved into the shallows to spawn.

    Spring bass in the shallows - North Carolina’s Lake Waccamaw provides bass fishermen with some unique opportunities in the spring

    Forget what you know about early spring bass fishing in North Carolina. Lake Waccamaw is different. Broad and shallow, Lake Waccamaw is a natural lake in rural Columbus County, and it affords anglers some unique opportunities not available on man-made lakes across the Tarheel State.

    April 01 at 7:00am