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Smith Mountain Lake March Fishing Report - Bass on the move…fast

 | By Seamus on 3/5/2024 2:06:03 PM | Views (73)


It’s an early spring again this year with stained water, warming trends and all species of fish on the move. Flowers are blooming and the trees are not far behind. The bass are ahead and we should see some bass on beds in late March unless we get a massive late spring cold snap. This is the time of year that fish are going to in all three patterns; Pre-spawn, spawn and even some super early post spawn fish. That allows for everyone to fish to their strengths, either power fishing or finesse. Plastics will start to come into play and we should be getting to the prime time for the big swimbait bite. It’s a great time of year to catch your PB also! I am booked up, but still have some days open to chase the fish of your year.

Bass are on the move. What I mean is that is we have buck bass moving into shallow water early this year. Buck (male bass) are usually the first to come shallow in the spring in large numbers to scope out areas for spawning. Using your mapping to find good secondary points and docks can be key this time of year to find holding bass waiting for a long stretch warming weather to move back to start making beds. These buck bass can be used as a dead give away to where the big pre spawn female bass are. I use a rule of thumb that if I hit three spots and am only catching buck’s I am either too shallow or I am too far back into the pockets towards the spawning flats. Using this approach of finding buck bass allows me to focus on deeper areas or drops back towards the main lake that the females may be using as they wait for the warm weather. Stay focused and pay attention to the size of bass you are catching this time of year to find the big ones.

Spring time fishing baits can be pretty straight forwards because of lot of these bass are putting on the feedbag before the big spawn. For power fishing you won’t find much more in my hand than a Megabass Magdraft, a V9 spinnerbait or a Sonic Side. For dragging I love tossing around a Missile baits Ike Mini Flip Jig, A micro football jig or a Neko with a Quiver worm or 48 worm. As a bait that may not get a ton of bites, but can call a giant one up is a buzz bait. Find something super loud and load a big bait on the back to call out a shallow early pre spawn fish. Once the water is over 52 degrees I find that the lake starts to come alive.

Keep in mind this month that smallmouth and largemouth, although they are both bass have a very different approach to spawning. Largemouth prefer flats with timber, stumps and docks, while smallmouth are more rock focused with pea gravel transitions and boulders as a main place to do their business. Target those types of structures to target the species you are hoping to catch.

The Stripers are starting to run to the backs of creeks and chew on the bait that came up early. It’s back to fluke jigging season in ditches and humps heading back into pockets. I would have a topwater ready for these super warm nights. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see fish schooling bright and early.

Crappie fishing has been lights out for weeks now and it’s only going to get better as we see fish start to move from deep holes into shallow brush piles near docks and cover. A damiki rigged with a small live minnow or minnow style bait is all you need to find some big pre spawn female fish.

This is a great time of year to get out and enjoy the coming spring. Not only do I think it’s important for the fish, but also us as people to get out of the stuffy house and into nature. Birds are singing, trees are blooming and it’s just good for the soul to get out in the sun! Tight lines and see you out there!

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Catch Information

Black Crappie
Black Crappie


Largemouth Bass
Largemouth Bass


Smallmouth Bass
Smallmouth Bass

Striped Bass
Striped Bass

This Fishing Report was submitted on 3/5/2024 2:06:03 PM by Seamus and last updated on 3/7/2024 6:04:53 AM.


Huddleston, VA US

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