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May 1st

May 1st

Author: Brady Harp


Well, it’s about time. Bass have done their thing, and the postspawn is on. While there’s going to be the inevitable group of stragglers that have yet to spawn, a majority of the population of bass will be wrapping up the spawn and heading into a full-on feeding mode. The males will mainly hang behind and guard the newly hatched bass, but those big females are ready to feed again to recoup all the weight they just lost. It’s time to get back to fishing fast and breaking the flip flops out again.

To me, the postspawn is the beginning of the best part of the year. It’s warm, but not scorching hot yet, and the fish are finally cooperating with what I want to throw—topwater. It’s pretty hard to beat a topwater bait, be it a walking, popping, or buzzing style bait. For the sake of this article, we’re going to highlight the walking-style baits. I keep it pretty simple this time of year. These fish eventually want to make it out to their summertime residence and will reverse their prespawn path to get back out there. I’m targeting points, channel swings, and the like that work their way out of the creek towards the main lake. Fish, depending on how far after the spawn they are, will be somewhere along this path. The good news is that if you find them, they’ll make themselves known. Hit a high-percentage spot with your walking bait and cover water. If they’re there, they’ll let you know. This is the time of year you can run-n-gun.

My equipment is fairly straightforward. I use 30-40 lb braided line, as it floats and will keep my topwater’s performance intact. I like the fastest gear ratio reel I can find to get them in the boat as quickly as possible. By far the most important part of my setup is the rod I use. I’m a short guy, so I need a shorter rod so that I don’t smack the water when working the bait, similar to a jerkbait. I use the CastAway Skeleton Nano Topwater rod, SKNTW69. You have to have a rod that isn’t going to yank the bait away from the fish but will load up. I get a little excited with my hooksets, and this rod has enough forgiveness that I don’t miss the fish.

Long story short, get out there, cover a lot of water, and you’ll find some fish throwing a topwater. The odds are high that you’ll find the kind of aggressive, and hungry, fish that will be ready to bite!