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Cold Bassin In The Mason Dixon Area

Despite a prolonged and agonizing arrival of spring, I finally managed to make a decent catch today, but not my beloved bluegills. After several pitty-patty outings of dink gills and stocker-sized trout, I decided to try one of my local bass ponds and hit on a hunch. I had heard from Andrew Ragas of the Fishing Headquarters that a favored early spring bass tactic in the mid-west was to toss rattle baits and keep them at a brisk pace to entice largemouths coming out of hibernation mode. Although I always thought that cold water efforts had to be 'slow' to be successful, I found out otherwise.

April 4, 2013 and we still haven't had a 60 degree day in my area. Today was 46, and the water temp was the same. I tied on a 1/2 oz beat up chrome Rat-L-Trap and headed to one of my favorite bass ponds. To my great surprise, my first cast collared a nice 17 inch bass. All total I got seven good fish today from 15 to 20 inches on the 'Trap". I also misded another half-dozen strikes.

The bite was funny...I caught fish 18 to 24 inches below the surface in water 4 to 5 feet deep. I would make a long cast, quickly flip the bail, and start a fast retrieve to keep the lure from plummeting to the bottom and fouling in algae. Strikes were similar to a bluegill tap, followed by complete slack in the line. Once I figured it out, I started to put the hooks in the fish. Apparently, they were overtaking the lure from behind and causing a loss of tension on the fast retrieve, You could feel the lure vibrating, then total slack, but then you had to quickly set the hook to get a hook up. I was amazed at how fast I was reeling, and how eager the fish were to hit such a fast moving lure, if with but a 'soft' touch. Fish were suspended high in the water column despite 46 degree water. This mornings low was 24...almost a record for the Baltimore area. Had 3 fish over 18 inches and BFOD was a 20 inch near five-pounder.

Tickled to have any action with these seasonal temperatures 20 degree below normal! Here are a few pics...

Calling for warmer weather next week, maybe I can put away the long johns!

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Comment by Jim Gronaw on April 12, 2013 at 7:13pm

A week of crazy, up and down weather saw water temps run from 46 to 64 degrees, then back down to 58 today with cold rain, Yesterdays high was 84, Wednesday was 94. Today was 55. We still managed 13 bass today on Mepps Aglias #4 in silver and gold. Two good fish each of the last two days.Fish in the first pic went 21.5 inches, second pic, todays best fish in the colder 55 degree day, went 19 inches. Both hit the gold Mepps in shallow 18 inches of water.

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