The jig has always been a top producer in winter of both largemouth and smallmouth bass.
When the water temperatures are above 50 degrees, some anglers prefer a rubber skirt jig with a plastic trailer, then switch to a hair jig and a pork-type bait when the water is below 50 degrees. This combination of a hair jig and pork is also known as a jig and pig.
To watch an experienced jig fisherman in action is a learning experience to any new angler. Jig fishing is a style of fishing where you present a bait right into the cover the bass are holding on. Most jig men will pick their target and will wait until just the right time to make the cast to the cover where they believe fish are.
Finding good cover such as deeper water brush piles, standing timber, stump rows, and anywhere there is cover with deeper water or a channel close by, is very important to remember when looking for areas to fish. Try to focus on main lake areas and the mouths of major feeder creeks, as most of this type of cover is used by largemouth bass. Largemouth bass hide in deeper cover in the winter and wait for food to come by.
Smallmouth bass are more active in cooler water and will hold in much more shallow areas where they follow schools of bait fish. Look for smallmouth bass on banks that have a steady drop off into deeper water and have broken chunk gravel size rocks on the banks. When you find such an area, back off and start making casts toward it, working down the bank. You can use different types of trailers like pork or plastic baits like crawdads, tube baits, curly tail grubs.
Get out and give jig fishing a try. Fish slowly and stay warm. The best thing about jig fishing is that it is a big bass bait and you could catch a bass of a lifetime.