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Kayak Fishing For Bass

Discussion in 'Sea Fishing Forum - Shore, Boat & Kayak Fishing' started by Baramundi Bob, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. Baramundi Bob

    Baramundi Bob Super Leeds United !!!

    There's a few new members on the site will be looking for their first bass this coming season. They will find themselves in a similar situation as many of us were in a year or maybe 2 year ago, i.e. where the bloody hell do you start ?

    When I first asked questions about bass fishing on this forum I was met by a wall of silence, behind the scenes I got a lot of help and information and was guided to my first bass on a lure within a few months.

    Obviously I don't want you all to stick up your best bass marks, but some guidance on techniques would be useful. Some things that maybe need answering are :

    What time of year do I start trying ? Should I start soon or do I run the risk of sickening myself off before the real action begins ?

    Should I cast or Troll my plugs ? and why should I choose one over the other ? What is trolling ? Do I paddle fast or slow when trolling ?

    Does it matter if I use surface plugs in deeper areas or should I buy deep divers.

    What depth of water should I fish ?

    Do I try close to shore or a mile to sea ?
  2. quint

    quint Watch out Emperor Zorg's about

    1) What time of year?

    I intend to start during the first weeks of June, weather permitting, if we are very lucky and get a settled spring it may be worth trying a little earlier, however I would rather listen or look for reports first rather than just get the odd fish, as soon as I hear reports of fish then it makes sense to have a good go - on the plus side I think we can target them later in the year, even into November if it stays clear

    2) Should I cast or troll?

    You can use both but it's the ground your fishing in that dictates what method to use

    Casting Positives

    You can cover the areas that can not be reached through trolling, for example shallow gullies, close to rocky features etc.

    Once you hook a fish you have a reasonable amount of control over the rod and reel, therefore you can play the fish instantly

    You can alter the lures working depth through speeding up or slowing down the retrieve

    You can cover more ground around you by fanning your casts

    There's something special when you realize (and the bass realizes), that somethings happened when you get a hit

    Casting Negatives

    You are fishing in a small area

    You have no immediate control over the kayak, and many times you could be near or around breaking waves

    Trolling Positives

    You cover an expansive area, a great way to locate a shoal of feeding bass

    There's something special when you hear the clutch screaming or see the rod arc over when a bass hits

    You have immediate control of the kayak and get get out of any tricky situation straight away

    Trolling Negatives

    Whilst you are covering all that ground, should you have stayed where you started?

    If that fish of a lifetime hits, can you turn around, compose yourself and get control of the fish before it's history? - there is always a gap between the take and you getting hold of the rod in a comfortable position

    If the ground suddenly rises and you've been watching the birds rather than your sonar, you can kiss goodbye to that expensive plug

    You need to stop a lot to make sure your lure has not picked up weed or a condom etc., which will stop the lure working

    What is trolling?

    The movement of the kayak works the lure not the reel, simply cast out to the stern about 20 yards, place the rod in the holder and paddle forward - I slacken the clutch off and can hear it go when I get a hit (or the bottom), some have a scotty holder and watch the rod

    Do I paddle fast or slow?

    I paddle quite slow, a very leisurely pace, although I have caught when I've gone faster, this also depends on your lure, you will soon see what suits you, paddle like hell if your on that scar and a wave is coming

    Does it matter if I use surface plugs in deeper areas or should I buy deeper divers?

    Bass will come up to surface/shallow divers, however I prefer to match the water depth with lure, I suppose as a rule the lure choice would be half the depth of water, so 10 foot X- Rap 4-6 foot, 20 foot J-13 10-12 foot, anything less than 10 foot it would be the maria kiss 1-2 foot

    Everyone has their own views on plugs but I use 4 the sliver and j-13's for deep, the X-Rap for medium and the maria kiss for shallow, I won't buy any more, just duplicate those

    What depth of water should I fish?

    There again you have to find your bassy ground and then that will dictate the depth, but in my experience you don't want to go above 20 foot, most of my good bass have come in 4-6 foot

    Do I try close to shore or a mile to sea?

    The great attraction of bass to me is that they are the ultimate shore fish, often caught at your feet, shallow ground is the key to success with the kayak and the yak is the ultimate tool, boats can not go where a yak goes, keep close to the shore, but don't overlook that shallow reef 400 yards from the shore

    That's my input I've probably missed some points but hopefully it will help, I'm no expert but it's all based on what I would do, if I had a choice I prefer to cast the plug close in rather than troll, one more word of advise is it's not rocket science and always use your own initiative and don't be afraid to try something new...good hunting
  3. kipper

    kipper New Member

    i cannot wait to join you quint, lets hope for a good season ahead.

  4. Baramundi Bob

    Baramundi Bob Super Leeds United !!!

    That's great information Iain. I'm sure a lot of the newbies who read it will be back to thank you at a later date.
  5. dan the pollock

    dan the pollock Rockling

    great info, ever thought of writing a book
  6. biscuitlad

    biscuitlad Guest

    I would second most of what quint has said in his post. My take just varies in the details:

    What time of year do I start trying ? Should I start soon or do I run the risk of sickening myself off before the real action begins ?

    I'd wait even later than 1st week in June, there's plenty of other fish to be targeting before then. July / August have been the best months for me, but water clarity is the critical factor. If it's like crystal early on, and fry are about, it's always worth having a go.

    Should I cast or Troll my plugs ? and why should I choose one over the other ? What is trolling ? Do I paddle fast or slow when trolling ?

    I always troll to where I'll fish, then cast. I use a deep diver for trolling, something like a sliver, as you can soon end up with your lure trailing along the surface. But if you've only got a sub-surface plug, just use that. Weed can be a pain, and a plug that tangled during the cast is also a pain. So, I check frequently. I like to cast even further than quint when I'm trolling (30 yards +), as my set up doesn't allow me to use rod holders and I like to make sure nothing affects the plug. The rod is held between my knees and it's all a bit dicey.... and one day, I'm sure I'll lose it. :scared:

    Does it matter if I use surface plugs in deeper areas or should I buy deep divers.

    Surface or sub-surface? I have plenty of poppers, and they are fun, but I've stopped using them. They do work, but gulls are such a nuisance, so it's sub-surface for me. When the water is really clear, fish can com up from amazing depth to hit a lure. 20 feet plus is no problem.

    What depth of water should I fish ?

    For me, too deep is a no no. Keep shallow. I generally find myself casting towards the shore. Deep water has never worked for me, but down south they catch bass in very deep water. So maybe we need to try different tactics? They use a lot of live sandeel.

    Good luck everybody. Let's hope the pair trawlers have left some for us.
  7. carpyken

    carpyken New Member

    wow, some flippin great advice there. Well done guys.

    Were to fish???

    There are bass the whole way up and down our coast, yes target clear, shallow water with your plugs but every bay, every wyke, every scar, every gully, every kelp forest, every feature - natural or man made..... will see bass at some time. And they are not some mysterious, impossible to find fish, they are there for the catching :happy: I'm sure someone has mentioned this, carnt remember who but totally agree -look for the warmer water, in a bit of shelter, over rough ground with sand in proximity, launce and sandeels will be present and the schoolies will be close by. Now specimen sized fish (ie 6lb plus) are a different story and that I have no experience of .... :no: But this is a new season almost upon us..... :happy:

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