There are several baits that are good for winter bass. One of the most widely used is the jig.
The jig has been used by winter anglers to catch slow-biting largemouth and hard- hitting smallmouth for years and it is no wonder. This is a bait that has proved itself time after time as a top producer of cold water bass. This is a bait that can be fished as slow as needed and at any depth and in and around most any type of cover.
During this time of year, largemouth bass will hold in the deeper, warmer water and close to some form of cover and will not move far or spend too much energy to find food. A smallmouth will stay in much shallower and colder water during the winter and will be much more active. On world-class smallmouth lakes like Dale Hollow Lake, the best smallmouth fishing of the year is during the coldest days of the year and one of the top baits is some form of a jig.
Some of the jigs are like the very small ones used on the floating fly rig all the way up to the bigger hair and rubber jigs used by many fisherman. The general rule on jig fishing is to use a rubber skirt jig in water above 50 degrees and a hair jig in water below 50 degrees like it is now. But every fisherman has his or her own way to fish each jig.
Myself, I prefer a hair jig yearround. Fish the jig tight to deeper cover and feel for any type of twitch or dead weight feeling and set the hook stick to darker colors like black, blue, orange or brown or any combination of these colors.
This is a tough time to fish, but you stand the chance to catch the bass of a lifetime.
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