NIGHT TOURNAMENTS

NIGHT TOURNAMENTS

The next tournament for my club is a night tournament on a like I am somewhat familiar with but I have never fished at night. Do I only fish docks with lights? Can I fish other areas (ie blow downs or pockets that sometimes hold fish)? Any suggestions?

June 15, 2021 03:44:50 PM
Jason Admin - admin

I'm sorry I didn't see this earlier. I fished night tournaments for years on Lake Wylie and Lake Norman. First order of business is to be safe, some anglers in the tournaments we were in were in accidents (some their fault, some the fault of intoxicated boaters who didn't turn their lights on). Secondly, docks lights are nice, particularly for your own ability to see, but it's certainly not the only place to catch bass. For your comfort, any moonlight and your eyes will adjust, a full moon and you can read a book. I got to where I preferred night fishing in the hot summer. Otherwise, bass will see the silhouette of a bait and they're feeding up, so it doesn't take a lot of light. I fished a straight black trick worm about 50% of the time. I've also caught hundreds of bass on 4" dropshot worms and 6" shaky heads at night, so don't rule out finesse and just toss spinnerbaits and buzzbaits. In short, dismiss from your brain the myth that bass are going to need the light to find your bait. I remember the first bass I caught fishing offshore humps on a Carolina-rigged trick worm on a pitch-black night. After that, I tossed all my assumptions out the window. Bass will hold in and around areas where they usually are in the day. On the aforementioned day, the fish where off the hump in deeper water in the day, and moved up onto the hump at dusk/night. A few positives to night fishing:
1. I think there's a little forgiveness on spooking fish, particularly in clear water, you get a little forgiveness on running in on a spot
2. Fishing pressure is usually lower, and you can often hit prime spots without competing
3. If you want to take it easy and eat a sandwich and a moon pie, you can usually tie up to bridge piling and drop shot up a respectable limit in the summer
4. It's certainly cooler and you don't need sunscreen (but bring the DEET)

July 16, 2021 10:18:01 AM

Thanks for the tips. I tried fishing by myself from about 9:30 to midnight and caught a small keeper and a short fish so I rode with another club member. I changed up the baits I usually throw to try to adjust for night fishing and it didn't work well. I retied my texas rig and caught one on a spot he took me to with no lights. Then we I swapped the dark colored crank bait for a sexy sunfish color and caught a second bass and a hybrid. Other than the 30 minutes under the bridge during the thunder storm, we had a great time.

July 23, 2021 11:57:47 AM
Jason Admin - admin

Glad to hear it. I miss those tournaments. For years it was the only time my brother and I could get out and fish together. We both have plates full now with responsibilities, but it's great to have those memories.

July 23, 2021 02:37:17 PM