If you love bass fishing, you’re probably going to find yourself fishing during the summer where the bass are likely hiding in grass. Bass like hiding in the grass so that they can ambush passing baitfish. This means that if you are fishing near grass, there are almost certainly bass in the water and they’re much more likely to fall prey to your lure during this time. We love bass fishing in the summer because of this reason and hope you’ll use some of these tricks to help catch more bass in grass.
What kind of grass do fish hide in?
All sorts. Whether it’s hydrilla, milfoil, lily pads, tules, or any other type of vegetation, bass will hide in all sorts of weeds. These plants will reach their peak growth during the summer thanks to the additional sun filtering through the water. This makes it easier to disguise your lures and boat from the fish below, but you should still use the techniques below to mimic the movements of baitfish through the weeds. You’ll learn how to catch bass fish in, out, and above the weeds by moving your lures in the same fashions as the bass’ favorite food.
Fishing Techniques for Grass
1. Punching Through the Grass
The best way to fish in grass is by using a punching rig. Punching involves using a heavy rig that is pulled quickly through the grass to mimic the movements of baitfish. Using bullet sinker (¾ oz. to 2 oz.) allows the rig to “punch” through the thick grass and the shank hook, skirt, and creature bait ensure a quick catch.
Punch fishing was developed in the deep south where most waterbeds have thick vegetation year round. Anglers built heavy rigs to cut through the growth and thus the punch rig was born.
In order to properly punch fish, you’ll want to cast and then quickly move your rod up and down to punch downward through the vegetation. If you don’t get any bites within a minute or two, try again. You’re trying to target the fish’s reactionary trigger when it notices movement, so you’ll want to quickly try again.
It helps to have a longer rod, sometimes over 7 feet, in order to get a powerful cast. You’ll also want heavy-duty gear, such as braided fishing line and a stout rod, in order to withstand the pressure of pull a bass out from the cover. A high gear ratio of 7.1:1 or an 8.1:1 will also help.
2. Use a Frog
Frog fishing is one of the most fun ways to catch bass during the summer. Not only is frog fishing exciting, it is also extremely effective in almost any sort of grass and weed coverage, although it is best when used around shallow grass.
Frog lures are meant to imitate the movements of a real frog in water by skimming the top. If you’re around good cover with lots of branches or grass sticking out of the water, you can try to get your frog lure to land on the exposed part and then make it jump into the water to imitate a real frog jumping into the water.
At this point, if a bass strikes, you should not immediately jerk the rod. Bass tend to try to stun their prey before coming back to eat them so if you immediately jerk your rod when a bass strikes, it will realize the bait isn’t real. Let the lure stay still for a few seconds and the bass should come back to finish off the easy meal and actually get stuck.
For more great tips on frog fishing, you can read this guide.
3. Use a Lipless Crankbait Around the Edges
Another great method for fishing in grass during the summer is in fact not fishing in the grass, but around it. Bass will often hide in the grass and jump out at small fish swimming by. You can take advantage of this behavior by running a lipless crankbait next to the edge of the grass mimicking the behavior of these small fish. An even better technique is to have the crankbait periodically dart in and out of the grass. Bass will go crazy at this, mostly striking right when the bait leaves the cover of the grass.
Which crankbait you use is mostly personal preference, but you’ll want to make sure that you use fluorocarbon fishing line since it is both more transparent than braided line and has no stretch, ensuring a clean pull from the water.