Late Summer Contact
Bass fishing in late summer in southern impoundments can get to be a little tough. You will see fish on your graph from 8 feet to 30 feet deep. You see an occasional blow ups that you know are bass. The shallow pockets are all full of bluegill and maybe shad. The usual places are hard to get a bite. Where do you go to catch fish?
Go Full Contact
There is something about a bait that makes contact against the bottom this time of year that triggers bites. I remember a September Bassmaster Open on Lake Murray in South Carolina when catching a limit was a good day. My co-angler and I had fished the first few hours with only a few dinks to show. No keepers. I made a move to fish a few points that I got bit on in practice. We both fished Carolina rigs. He caught 3 in a row while I was waiting on my first bite. After comparing rigs, the only difference was the weight. He was throwing a 1 ounce weight and I had on a ½ ounce weight. That extra disturbance was the deal. I changed to the heavier weight and caught my limit in the next hour.
What else other than a rig?
The Carolina rig can shine this time of year as the last story mentioned. There are other baits to make contact on the bottom to get those bass going. Football jigs are one of those. I think you start at a ½ ounce and use a ¾ ounce jig if you can do it and not get hung up. I really like that structure type jig like a Missile Jigs Head Banger around rocky points. You can make super long casts and cover water quickly. You can hop from point to point and find an active fish here and there. Many anglers are throwing topwaters and fishing way up creeks. Many other anglers are still fishing isolated brush piles that have been producing all summer but are just beat up by now.
Exactly what type of places to I contact?
Points are a key place to throw a full contact bait. I have seen patterns in the late summer on bigger main lake points and all the way back to the last points going into pockets. The best part is that a few casts can usually cover these points. Just keep running the ones that look good until you get bit. Try to duplicate the type of place you got bit on but don’t stop fishing other points until you get 4-5 bites on similar points. This can be a great pattern to run once you start to figure it out.
It can be a relief to go out when the fishing is tough and not have to throw super light line and a spinning rod. This is power fishing. This is man stuff. Grab that 7’-7’3” medium heavy Cashion Fishing Rod and spool it up with 14 to 20 pound Sunline Shooter fluorocarbon. Grab some heavy jigs or the trusty Carolina rig with some big weights. I would try either the Missile Baits Baby D Stroyer or Quiver 4.5, depending on if they want a bait with action or not. Put some contact in your late summer bass fishing to have some fun!