Winter Fishing Tips
While anglers in northern Illinois are fishing through holes in the ice, anglers in southern Illinois are still fishing open water lakes and ponds.
Mild winters allow southern Illinois anglers to fish all year around. Granted the temperatures are colder than would be the case the rest of the year, the lack of ice permits both bank and boat fishing. The key to this type of fishing is finding the fish. Never does the old adage “Ninety percent of the fish will be in 10 percent of the water” seem more applicable.
By knowing at what depth other anglers are taking fish, you go a long way toward being a successful angler on a particular day. Depth is particularly important during the cold months when game fish are less likely to move around.
Experienced anglers know that winter bass fishing success is dependant upon knowing the depth at which fish are suspending. It is more important than ph, structure and other factors.
Other anglers on the same lake may not have much success. Yet you can take good numbers and sizes of fish. With the aid of electronics, you might discover that the big fish are down nearly 40 feet. It might be that no one else is fishing even close to that depth. This gives you the upper hand when it comes to catching fish.
For those without the electronics, a local bait shop operator is the next best source of information. He can usually tell you how deep other anglers are fishing and their relative success or failure at those depths. He usually will recommend particular lures or baits that are producing at this time.
Another question is where successful anglers are finding fish. You can divide most lakes into three areas. They are shallow areas with stained water and abundant cover, an area of moderate depth with less cover and semi-clear water or a deep area with little cover and clear water.
If you know the depth at which fish are most active then you can probably eliminate two of the three areas and focus on the remaining water.
Do you have any winter fishing tips to share, let us know in the comments.
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