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the Prespawn Bass Fishing Guide

By Raul Rodriguez

prespawn bass fishing

Mention prespawn bass fishing and you'll get the blood pumping and heart racing of any avid angler, whether a newbie or veteran. It means we are coming out of winter and it's time to check the fishing equipment as we have an opportunity to start the season with some potential hungry, big bass. That's what its all about. 

Prespawn is one of the components of spring time bass fishing. Spring bass fishing is such a big deal it's actually got three seasons in one.

  • Prespawn
  • Spawn
  • Post Spawn

So lets take a look at what the prespawn is all about.

What is prespawn bass fishing

When you hear people or articles or videos talk about prespawn bass fishing they are talking about that time of year when bass are on the move from their winter locations to the spots where they will eventually spawn. This move is not made instantly. They will gradually move from the depths of their winter homes and start staging near shallow flats where they will spawn as the water temps start to warm up. They will start to relate to structure and cover around these spawning flats.

I love using a combination of Google Maps, Google Earth and the Navionics web app to check out potential prespawn bass locations. I would say this type of studying is a must if you are going to a lake that you are not familiar with. If you are a bank fisherman, this is even more important to make sure you don't spend valuable time in a spot where you are not able to reach areas where prepawn bass may be holding.

prespawn bass fishing spotsThe arrows are potential areas that may hold bass waiting to move into the flats that are circled.
prespawn bass fishing locationsThis can be structure or cover (arrows) that lead up to spawning flats (circled).
prespawn structureIt's possible to reach some of these areas from the bank too.

When is prespawn bass fishing

The prespawn is that time period coming out of winter going into early spring. This is the time period you will want to start searching those areas that lead up to the spawning flats. This time is going to be different depending on your location. Bass will start to spawn at water temps of 65-72 degrees. With this info you can start doing some recon on your lake to figure out the pattern of your local bass. This is where a good water thermometer is a must. Understand what the water temp is and start learning what the bass are doing in your lake.

If you don’t have a fishing thermometer, check this one out at Amazon

Prespawn bass baits

In the articles below you will find a few common baits mentioned. My favorite is the lipless crankbait. You can use this lure as a search bait and quickly find productive spots. Another popular choice is jigs. I’m not much of a jig angler myself but it's easy to see that this could be a productive prespawn bass baits with most swearing by it. Also finesse style soft plastics. In this group I feel you can't go wrong with a drop shot worm to entice bass that don’t want to mess with your fast moving crank. 

Pick just a couple of options so you can focus on fishing rather than changing you rigs out. Pick a fast moving option, like the lipless crank, and the then a slower moving option, like a dropshot senko and stick with these until you get the bite or eliminate the spot and move on. Nothing worse than psyching yourself out with lure overload.

Take a look at these articles for inspiration.

5 Best Baits for Pre-Spawn Bass

4 Baits for Early Prespawn

Top Lures for Prespawn Bass


More prespawn Resources

What is Prespawn Bass Fishing? - Lucky Tackle Box

Spring Bass Fishing Tips - Huk Gear

See more bass fishing tips.

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