FISHING ON THE EDGE
There is something special about edges, bass and other fish cruise along them, collect around any irregularities and wait in ambush along these important breaklines. Edges give us a starting point to fish, a place where fish are most likely to be. Without edges, we would be aimlessly casting to open water or spending time fishing non-productive areas of cover.
Fishing along key edges has made for some of our best fishing during the past month. Edges can be in many forms such as weed edges, breaklines, ledges or drop-offs, creek channel edges and even change in the bottom content. What can make these spots attract more fish is a combination of these edges.
Much of our weed edge fishing is along the outside edge, but the less fished inside weed edge is an important area during the spring. When fishing along these shallow weedlines, pay attention to points, turns, pockets or cuts and know that bass will use the inside weed edge to feed at night. We also find on lakes where northern pike, muskies, or big walleye rule, the inside weed edges are a good place for bass during much of the summer too. Good choices of baits are plastics, jigs or other weedless baits and topwater.
The deeper outside weed edges are good all-around edges for big bass and what can generally make these even better are those adjacent to the lakes deepest water. The edge or corner at the base of the drop-off can be another excellent area, and one that is often overlooked. Look for fish to collect along points, inside turns and irregularity that breaks up or interrupts a straight edge. These deep edges can hold bass from early spring through late fall as long as the weeds stay green. Along these outside edges of the weeds, the more active bass can be caught on a deep diving crankbait or spinnerbaits. If the bass are not in an active mood or seem to have lockjaw, try an assortment of plastics or jig type lures.
A third type of weedbed edge is the one formed by the top of submerged weeds. Here is where topwater baits, buzzbaits, spinnerbaits, shallow-running minnow type lures and soft jerkbaits are some of our favorites when the weeds are about 1 to 2 feet below the water’s surface. During the summer on many lakes the weeds will even form a canopy on the water where fish will retreat farther back into this weed canopy and that is where the scum frog is the go to bait.
Ledges or drop-offs are another well-known edge bass anglers need to look for along with any corners or creek channel edges that can always be productive but often overlooked. Crankbaits, Carolina rigged plastics and jigging spoons during summer and along these ledges are good spots for trolling those deep diving crankbaits too.
The transition edges where the bottom content changes can hold lots of fish and best if in depths of 15 -20 feet or less. Those which have a greater difference such as large rock to small rock (pea gravel) or sand are more productive. Other edges can occur with changes in water temperature, water color where stained or muddy water caused by rain or by windy conditions forms edges in clear lakes and currents can also form an edge. We love to see areas of stained water on a clear body of water since this usually activates the food chain giving fish a greater opportunity for feeding. Lures that create vibration such as spinnerbaits, chatterbaits, vibrating crankbaits, rattling jigs work well along this edge.
Lastly, if you are on a lake with lots of timber and find an area where the edge of timber comes up to a river channel, be sure to fish where these two edges come together. We mentioned Bass often, but those channel edges in a lake are very productive for good Catfish, just find a bend and anchor up.
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Till Next Time, GOD BLESS & GOOD FISHING.!