Fishing & Boating News

Fall Topwater Season Is In Full Swing

by: Scott M. Petersen,

Photo by Scott M. Petersen
Photo by Scott M. Petersen
(Oct. 17, 2011 - )

When we hit this time of the season many things in the bass season come into play. You have a weaning deepwater bite that is starting to fade with the cooling water temps of fall resulting in having many of the bass that called these deep water haunts home all summer long now heading back towards the shallows for the first time since the spawn. Another factor to throw into the mix, fish and forage population will be at its highest level at this time of the season on your favorite lake, meaning the bass do not have to work too hard when it comes time to find its next meal.

So with these odds staring you in the face what is your next move, for me this is the time of the year that I fish for me. I have no tournaments left to get prepared for so the majority of the time when I hit the water it is for fun fishing to see just how many bass I can catch in a day. This is the time of the season that I put my Spro topwater baits to work.

When fall starts to cool the summer water temps and you have the influx of deepwater fish joining the population of shallow summer bass one of the most effective ways for these bass to corral forage is to shove them up to the surface and ambush them, making topwater a logical choice to use at this time of the fishing season.

Let's look at some of the different topwater options that Spro has to offer fisherman when it comes to the fall topwater season.

Bronzeye Popper
When fishing around any type of cover this should be one of your go to topwater choice. I have thrown this bait into more places that I can count and gotten strikes from bass that I would not even imagine I could get a bait to. Many of these bass were caught just by sound alone because the bait was out of my sight under a tree or under a dock or lurking in some other type of cover. The Bronzeye Popper is also an excellent choice to fish in the areas that you cannot work with a regular topwater bait. The Bronzeye Popper is made weedless and will go through anything you can throw at it. This has fast become my go to bait when fishing the edge of the pads or cover and I need the calling power of a topwater bait to get the bass attention that a bait is in the area. Because the forage level is at its highest during the fall season, the Bronzeye Popper now comes in two sizes. We have added a new Bronzeye Baby Popper for the times that you need to match smaller forage in your system that the bass may be feeding on.

When it comes to equipment for fishing the Bronzeye Popper it is power fishing all the way. I fish the Bronzeye Popper on a 7'6? flippin stick, teamed with a matching baitcaster reel that is spooled with 60lb Sunline FX2 braided line.

Bronzeye Frog
When it is time to head into cover there is no better frog on the market than the Spro Bronzeye Frog designed by the frog master himself Dean Rojas. What sets the Bronzeye apart from the rest of the frog baits on the fishing scene? The Bronzeye Frog is designed around a super sharp Gamakatsu hook, not a frog imitation with a hook. That is why the hookup ratio is higher with the Spro Bronzeye than others imitations.

There is not any cover that is too thick for the Bronzeye to attack. Pads, matted grass, anything you can throw at this frog if the bass can get to the frog you can get that bass to the boat. What drives the thrill when fishing the Bronzeye Frog is the simple fact is you do not know when or where the next strike will come from and the most exciting part of this is it all happens right in-front of you.

With the action unfolding before your eye you have to train yourself to wait before you set the hook. This is probably one of the hardest thing you will have to do when fishing a frog, but do not set the hook until you feel the weight of the bass. To help me I fish my Bronzeye Frog with the rod tip down and when I see the bass blow up on my bait I count (1000, 2000, 3000). This will give the bass enough time to get the frog in its mouth before I set the hook. At first this will be tough because you will have a tendency to try to set the hook when you see the blow up. But after a few missed bass you will soon get the hang of what I am saying. Many say that if you can get 50% of the bass back to the boat on a day of fishing a frog you are doing good. Well I can tell you if you use the stop and feel method with your Bronzeye Frog your numbers will be in the 80% range or higher.

One of the keys to catching bass in heavy cover, take a close look at the area that you are fishing look for larger openings in the pads and weeds. Cast your frog past these points and bring the frog up to these areas and start to work the frog. About half way stop the frog and let it sit a few seconds then give it a couple of quick short twitches to make the frog dance a little in place if you do not get a strike work the frog back to the boat and look for another area to make your next cast. There are days when you will be able to see feeding lanes that the bass are using and key in on these areas. Then there will be days that the bass will be roaming but looking for food these days are a little tougher to fish but you can still catch a boat load of bass and still have a great day.

When we get further into the fall season and the frogs start to migrate back to the waters for a short window they will become high on the bass list of food as they are sitting ducks to waiting bass looking for a frog dinner on the bank. This will generally happen when the lilly pads start to die so do not write the pads off too early. When the frogs start to migrate these key areas will be packed with feeding bass.

For my Bronzeye Frog fishing I use the same setup that I use to fish the Bronzeye Popper. I use 7 1/2' flipping stick, teamed with a matching reel, spooled with 60lb Sunline FX2 braided line. One thing I will add is I will use a Spro Cross Lock Snap. This gives the Bronzeye Frog a little more action to dance the frog in place then if I tie my FX Braid direct to the frog.

Dawg 100 and 125
If I am looking to throw a bait that I need to work a large area of water the Dawg 100 is my go to bait. With the Dawg I can use a walk the dog retrieve to cover a large area of water looking for random bites. The way the bait is designed with its sway back this bait is easy to fish utilizing the walk the dog retrieve. The Dawg comes in two sizes to match conditions you may be fishing in. The 100 is the smaller of the two and will be the one that you will want to throw the majority of the time, but for those days when you are looking for a bigger bite or need to attract more attention to your bait size up to the Dawg 125 to get the job done.

To work the Dawg, make your cast and let the bait sit for a few second to let the water clam where the bait landed. To perform the walk the dog retrieve you have to pull the bait in short spurts with the rod, taking up the slack line with the reel. It will take you a little bit of time to get the cadence down, but when you do you will see your strike ratio go up. So take the time to get the walk the dog retrieve down.

When it comes to equipment for the Dawg I fish this on a 7ft medium action baitcaster rod, teamed with a 6:3-1 retrieve reel that is spooled with 12 to 15lb Sunline Natural Mono line. You do not want to use fluorocarbon for this tactic as fluorocarbon line will hold water and sink your topwater bait making it harder for you to get the proper action out of your bait costing you strikes in your day of fishing.

So before your fishing season comes to an end grab a few Spro topwater baits and head to your favorite lake for some late season topwater action. We may be getting to the end of our summer bite but we are heading straight into the prime fall topwater season.

For a better look at all the products that Spro has to offer log onto the spro website.