Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Hula_Grub

"Early" smallies

16 posts in this topic

So, I'm lucky enough to be headed to Basswood next week, just outside of Ely. Anyone have any tips for smallies this early?

I have no intention of targeting bedding bass or using live bait. Mostly just looking for ideas on presentation and depths given the spring water temps. Any fishing for bass I've done this early has been in streams, so I'm at a loss as to where to begin.

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well the bass season is not open in mn next weekend i believe its two weekends away.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well the bass season is not open in mn next weekend i believe its two weekends away.

It is where he is!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ice just got off the lakes up there, they will be no where near spawning yet. In fact one webcam I've been watching, the ice went out Tuesday night. Think pre-spawn activity, what that entails, I'm not sure. But somebody should chime in and help ya out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Erratic jerk baits and twitch baits, pointers, x-raps, shad x-raps, rogues etc. Hits will be on the pause. Experiment with the pause time. I think it's too early for the lipless bite. Tubes and small jigs with chigger craw or rage chucks too.

My thoughts anyway. Thats what worked well for me in the spirit lake area last month when the water temps were in the 40s.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd try to find the warmest water, but I don't have much experience with smallies on a lake other than Mille Lacs. They should be close to the area where they spawn and feeding up. Well in theory:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Drag a 3" tube on a 1/16 ounce jig with a good sharp hook. Rattle baits can draw a good reaction bite regardless of water temp. Smaller swimbaits like the 4" shadalicious slow rolled ought to produce as well. And as said by Reid G, suspending jerkbaits should produce well too.

Don't be afraid to look in shallow water up on flats or especially on saddles between points and islands. I caught 22 fish off one saddle in less than 4' of water last year up that way when the water temp was 41 degrees...

Just be thorough in the areas that you choose and you ought to scratch out a few.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

my vote is for the small x-rap - in lindners hardbait video they are on a lake with smallies day or 2 after ice out and he says he has the trick for these smallies and it is an x-rap. I like al and the gang

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They'll be bunched up too (wolf pack, as zona would say). Not spread out yet like you see deeper into the pre-spawn. If you find one, throw out the marker buoy and stay there. There are definitely more down there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wish I was going to fish smallies this weekend...man I'm jealous!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In my original post I almost put "please don't tell me when the bass opener is."

Thanks for all the info guys- keep it coming!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hey um bass opener isn't til....

good luck take lots of pictures

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LOL Hula - Good luck and post a rpt when you get back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On the 'sippi it's open all year in some spots, and right when the ice went out up until right now we've been doing really well on normal-size white spinnerbaits, slooooow rolled just above bottom. We also did pretty well on a fluke with a weighted hook, jerkbaits and lipless were dead. We were fishing within about 100 yards of where we know they spawn, in slack water, basically just getting fat and ready to drop eggs. That was dark water though, it should be alot clearer in basswood. I'd start in 8-12fow, on points adajacent to any good-looking spawning grounds. In the river we've been catching 'em in about 2-5 fow, but everything's different on the river.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I second Reid's comments. I think he pretty much hit the nail on the head. Jerkbaits, jerkbaits, jerkbaits. Tubes and small jigs will work too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    • Next time just call it a great Pike video, with some bonus Bass thrown in! Who's to know?
    • Good luck and shoot straight 
    • He said "getting wood" uh uhha 
    • Or I flat out suck, can't figure it out, on the bright side the snot rockets kept me entertained!    
    • The green up is still in full swing this week, with the help of consistent rain events and temperatures between the 50s and 70s. This, combined with recent snow in the northern portions of the state continues to put a damper on recently high fire danger across and has brought us to "Low" fire danger throughout the counties. Water levels are still running above normal, and the Wisconsin River is above flood stage. Trails across the state are likely to feature more than a few hints of mud. Bring your rubber boots or waterproof hikers and enjoy the scenery as the banks, forests, marshes and prairies respond to the influx of moisture. Challenging weather made for tough angling across the board this past week. Anglers from Marinette County to Brown County reported numerous attempts at walleye and brown trout. Murkier water didn't help, but reports came in from anglers that they were seeing success for non-target species, particularly northern pike. In Oconto County, the sucker run is rolling along and disturbing the bite. In Brown County, those that did see success for walleye noted that the fish were fully spawned and on their way back to the bay. Stream anglers are reporting a difficult steelhead bite in eastern Door County, while suckers have dispersed in Kewaunee County, leaving the steelhead there more visible as temperatures climb upwards. Water temperatures range from the upper 40s to the low 50s. There were two to four foot waves and small craft advisories in effect last Thursday and Friday in Milwaukee. Anglers at the McKinley Pier are looking for coho and chinook salmon, while brown trout were being landed behind Summerfest. Anglers in Racine County reported boaters and pier anglers landing brown trout as well as a few coho. At the Root River, water visibility was around 12 inches, with an improving steelhead bite and a few remaining suckers caught. Anglers in Kenosha saw more success for browns from the harbor than the south pier. Though no catches were reported from the Pike, the mouth of the river is open and visibility is good. Temperatures for these waters ranged from 47 to 54 degrees Fahrenheit. .
    • Spotted it on the way back from getting wood and tried to sneak up on it. 
    • Hawg - please take down my post - didn't mean to offend or break any rules     
    • I looked it up on google and found it but not the sprinkler it was $12.99. I don't remember what it was.
    • Just went home for lunch and....he's back.
    • Within the last few days the bluejays have discovered my suet cakes.   Also have a hairy woodpecker that has appeared recently. 
  • Our Sponsors