Understanding the importance of the low light in the life of the Bass and many other predators for that matter is crucial to our success. Clearly this is by no means the only time to catch them but it is a time of increased activity for the fish which gives us anglers an advantage and chance to out wit them and bag a big one!
Skilled anglers will know that this is the time to be ready for, the window of maximum opportunity is short and its no time to be thinking of changing the fly or leader! You need to be at the top of your game, you may only get 20 minutes; maximise your skills during this calm, erie and sometimes spectacular time when the sun drops below the horizon in a blaze of glory and everything takes on that fabulous burnt orange colour, with that lovely band of reds and oranges still on the horizon.
You may have already been fishing for hours and picked up a couple of nice fish but now is the time to catch in numbers and pick off that prize personal best!
To further explain, by low light we are referring to periods around sunset and twilight, potentially the final hour of the day before the sun dips below the horizon and then the next 30 minutes referred to as twilight, when you can see both the stars in the sky and the horizon!
These periods are believed to be so important to us anglers because the activity level of the Bass increase significantly, effectively they are also capitalising on the low light to give them an advantage over their prey!
As a predator, the Bass will gorge itself when the opportunity arrises and this occurs at times when their food source is plentiful as well when its most vulnerable!
Mid summer when the sandeel and white bait are plentiful, coincide this with a spring tide in full flow at dusk and you have the perfect conditions for a feeding frenzy.
Ironically the baitfish themselves are most actively feeding at this time, perhaps wandering a little to far away from the shallow water or weed beds either in search of food or pushed by the increased current flow.
There is nothing more exciting to the angler watching and reading the water for signs of fish, to suddenly see the water come alive with silver as the bait fish jump for the sky as they are pursued by the marauding Bass!
Don’t be afraid to fish ridiculously close to the shore!…
As the Bass corall the bait fish towards the shore they often end up on the beach or bank in a desperate attempt to escape, bass can occasionally be seen chasing them with their backs clearly out of the water!
As anglers, we can take advantage of these low light opportunities with a number fishing techniques. With the Bass in an active feeding mode and effectively hitting anything that moves, the strategy should involve the use of flies, lures or baits that can be presented quickly and effectively over a large area and with the ability to switch direction and area to follow the feeding fish. Therefore spinning with a lure or fly fishing are the two best methods to deploy. Live and dead baits tend to come into their own after dark, but that’s another story.
Doesn’t need to be anything too specialised, a 9′ fly rod wt #7 is ample to cast a reasonably large streamer, ideally you want a good quality reel that can cope with the salt water.
Equally an 8 to 9 ft spinning rod capable of casting 10 to 50 grammes is ideal, length of rod is more a personal choice, modern technology offers plenty of forgiveness in quality gear.
Flies to use are streamer patterns with plenty of movement such as our surf deceivers and baitfish specials. Don’t be afraid to fish ridiculously close to the shore with your fly these shallow water opportunities are where fly fishing has the upper hand over lures.
Bass will chase their prey right into the shallows and often when fishing the surf you see the Bass shore side of you, in fact this can be a good tactic to deploy, wade out some 30 metres and fish back in towards the shore. Also useful when there is an onshore breeze, as it makes the casting easier!
Snowbee Stinger lures are specifically designed to achieve ultra realistic
shapes and profiles imitating the swimming action and vibrations of natural bait fish. The Plugs feature life-like scale patterns, coupled with pearlescent or holographic finishes for the ultimate realism, guaranteed to attract the attention of Bass and other predatory fish. Oversized, 3D epoxy eyes provide a ‘trigger-point’ to help provoke an aggressive response.
The Bass are particularly fond of the Stinger Deceiver Minnow 75S
A versatile new small minnow design, which will cover many requirements.
Equally suited to fresh or salt water fishing the exaggerated lip, allows the Deceiver to be either ‘jerk-fished’, causing it to dart downwards, like a startled baitfish, looking for cover, or fished very slow, where the oversized lip gives it a long, slow ‘side to side’ action. A perfect lure for modern LRF fishing and shallow close in beach/bank where a hard lure action is required.