Written by Andrew Schadegg
As bass come off their beds and settle into their post-spawn routine, the buzzbait bite kicks into high gear. If you have fished a buzzbait before, you know that it is hands down one of the most fun techniques to catch fish on.
It’s fast. It’s explosive. It’s exciting. So when and where do you fish it?
WHEN Should You Fish a Buzzbait?
- Start in Early Spring – The buzzbait can literally be used all year round (and that includes the dead of winter!), however there is no dispute that it starts to pick up in the spring and in particular right after the bass get off their beds and the balls of fry are still swimming around. The buzzbait will incite some major ticked off females to strike when you’re buzzing around their babies.
- Shad Spawn – Shad are one of the most popular forage species in most lakes and they tend to spawn just after the bass and sometimes even congruently. You’ll find these spawning shad pushed up tight in the mornings and evenings against hard structure like walls, levees and rocks. Run parallel to the structure and throw the buzzbait as tight to it as you can. Bass will think they have an easy trapped meal and hit it off the surface.
- Summer through Fall – You can catch buzzbait fish all through the summertime, particularly during those cooler low-light conditions when bass are most active. A cloudy day is your best friend during the summer, to keep that topwater bite going. However, the fall is really the buzzbait’s prime time. This is when all the baitfish start schooling up and you see bass chasing them into pockets and shallows. Bass will bust through these schools and break the surface. This is when you need a buzzbait tied on and any time you see those busting fish, toss that bait right through the middle and hold on.
WHERE Should You Fish a Buzzbait?
- Shallow Cover – This is a broad category, but any weedlines, reeds/tules, docks or structure are perfect targets for a buzzbait. Like mentioned above, bass will pin baitfish up against that cover and hide in ambush spots that make it easy to attack. They sense that disturbance coming over their house and many times they can’t resist.
- Shade Pockets – Particularly in the summer, shade and clouds are your friend, especially for throwing a buzzbait. Morning and evenings are ideal, but on those days when the sun is high, make sure you look for things like docks, overhanging trees or anywhere with shade. This is where you want to fish your buzzbaits.
A buzzbait should never leave the deck of your boat from late February through November for most parts of the country. It’s an incredibly fun technique, but it can also be an incredibly effective technique for catching those big fish when they’re least expecting it.