By Josh Boyd
While it might seem difficult to fathom at the current moment, the onset of fall is just over the horizon. Consistently muggy weather will give way to cool, crisp mornings and mild afternoons. As a byproduct of this changing of the seasons, anglers from across the nation will begin to strike out for their local lakes in search of awesome autumn fishing.
During the fall of the year, the variety of preferred tactics for boating bass with regularity are nearly as numerous as the leaves that fall from the trees. It seems as if every angler has his or her own specific set of tactics for making the most out of this time on the water.
One such angler who comes prepared to put fish in the boat upon every launch from the ramp is 1998 Bassmaster Classic Champion, Denny Brauer. According to Brauer, the fall is a wonderful time to hit the water in search of hot bass fishing action, and those who are capable of adjusting to the ever-changing circumstances that this time of the year presents, will likely find ample success.
The following are several of Denny Brauer’s go-to tactics for boating fall bass.
Fish Where the Bait Is
Brauer feels that fall fishing success is largely a product of locating the baitfish that bass regularly key in on during this portion of the year. As temperatures cool during the fall of the year, baitfish begin migrating into various creeks and backwater areas. As such, bass waste little time taking up pursuit.
“In the fall, your main deal is the bait. You really need to fish where the bait is at. The shad populations are normally going to want to migrate into the creeks, and the bass will follow. They will also get up on those shallow main lake flats. If you find the baitfish, you will find the bass,” said Brauer.
Match Lure Color to Food Sources
When it comes to determining which color lure to employ during the fall, Brauer feels that simplicity is often key. He states that matching the color of your lures to the baitfish on which fall bass naturally feed is instrumental in finding success.
“Anything that is shad, or shad color, performs well in the fall because that is what they are eating. A shad color spinnerbait is one that becomes a big player again during this time of the year,” Brauer says.
Do Not Get Hung Up on Lure Type
Brauer is also quick to specify that the type of lure he uses when fishing in the fall is purely situational, and depends upon the circumstances at hand. He also says that he is open to the use of nearly any lure, as long as it is the right fit for the location in which he is fishing.
“I do not look at the lure as much as I look at the location. You have got to be open-minded, and study the cover in an area, as well as what kind of lure will work best in that cover. You must also ask yourself what the fish are doing. Are they aggressive? If so, you can throw a topwater. If they are not so aggressive, drop down there with a spinnerbait or swim jig. You just have to learn to act accordingly. So much of fishing is just common sense,” said Brauer.
Awesome Autumn Action
Just because the temperatures cool off, does not mean that the fishing action does as well. In fact, the fall of the year can be one of the best times to hit the water in search of lunker largemouths.
While many anglers express difficulty in consistently finding, and staying on, the bass bite each fall, Denny Brauer feels that the above-mentioned tactics are universal enough to be of use to any angler, on virtually any body of water one could fish. By simply locating and imitating the baitfish on which bass feed, at any point on a body of water where they might be found, one can readily find success when fishing this fall.