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Old 05-06-11, 12:29 AM   #1
boloson
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Default how to catch jumping fish

So big bass are jumping out of the water at my local reservoir but they are in the middle (about 50 yds away) I cast what ever cranks I have that can actually reach this spot & no luck. Any idea what they're feeding on & advice on choice of lures? It's a shallow reservoir probably 4 - 5 feet max depth with multiple groups of Lilly pads and very murky brown water. snapping turtles and pumpkin seeds are in abundance.
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Old 05-06-11, 03:19 AM   #2
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If they won't hit a noise maker, try a weightless fluke.
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Old 05-06-11, 06:46 AM   #3
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The bass in a local lake I fish often started showing this behavior a couple years ago and I didn't know what exactly was going on either. Turns out, shad were introduced into the lake and the bass were schooling the shad towards the surface and the jumping bass were simply bass chasing the shad. So far my best lure has been a 3" Excaliber popper. I prefer the 3" popper as it's heavier and will aid in casting distance. If I try to get my boat close to the feeding school, everything stops. So casting distance is a must. If however the school of shad and feeding bass make it's way towards you, they tend to come closer. And in that case, the Fluke as Bubba recommended is a great lure to use. I have caught a few in this situation on a rattlin lipless crankbait, like a Strike King Red Eye Shad, but I've never had any such luck working those feeding schools with a traditional crankbait. Can't say why other than maybe they are feeding near the surface big time and the crankbait is running below the action. This year, I am going to try a swim jig worked fast and erratically through the school just to see what happens.
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Old 05-06-11, 07:36 AM   #4
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With schoolers there are those that bite just about anything and those that bite almost nothing.Happens a lot on ky lake with them boiling the water nearby and wont hit squat, reasons are simpler than what most would believe.
Many different forage bases and many different sizes,those chasing butter bean shad wont hit a large crank well maybe swipe at it,those chasing fatheads wont even look at a shad immitation same with shiners,and god help you if its some sort of fry as they run through the school with mouth open taking maybe a doz in at a time or none not targeting any specific minnow.
Sometimes with this one a spinnerbait having 4 small willow leaf works,but nothing in general does well.
It is unnerving to watch the water churning and not obtain a bite,but due more to what they are feeding on and our inability to portray the prey.
Sometimes the opposite works like a large strike king swimbait,possibly a shipjack that has horned in on the action.The desire to run it off or kill it,works to some degree.
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Old 05-06-11, 08:48 AM   #5
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For jumping fish try the approach used by these guys for Asain Carp.
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Old 05-06-11, 08:59 AM   #6
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The only time I've ever seen bass jump out of the water is up at the lake we fish for Musky. Although if a 50" musky was chasing me, I'd probably jump out of the water too!

If they're feeding, which is probably the case, try baits that imitate baitfish. I'd try a lipless crank. That should allow you to cast farther than where they're jumping and reel into them.

If they're feeding on baitfish, maybe something like a suspending jerkbait that seems like a baitfish that was attacked and is hurt and kind of resting or slowly sinking or rising (depending on the jerkbait).

Another thing I'd try is a topwater. probably a popper or walk-the-dog type bait.

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Old 05-06-11, 09:12 AM   #7
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i like flukes for jumping fish, but it doesnt happen all that often where I fish, so I dont get to do it much... excpet for the white Bass on Nolin... The white bass get into the jumps, and you can catch a load of whites with a topwater or a fluke. Then if you thor w a weighted fluke under the school you will sometimes get some nice largemouth who are under the jumps waiting for injured baitfish to sink down to their level..
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Old 05-06-11, 12:09 PM   #8
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First, are you sure they are bass? I've been fooled by leaping carp during springtime.

2nd, when I've encountered schooling bass that wouldn't just bite anything, I've often had luck by downsizzing and going sub surface. I've caught a lot of them by throwing Road runners or crappie jigs at them. Occasionally, when they're schooling in less than 10 feet of water, I've even had to resort to fishing a carolina rigged worm under them to get bit.

From your post, it seems to me like you are bank bound at the moment. This could limit you quite a bit if you can't get close enogh to reach them with finesse baits. Could you possibly wade a bit safely? If not, then you're probably going to have come up with some fairly hefty lures to get that 50 yard cast. You might consider a jerkbait, like a pointer, they cast well and when schoolies have been hard to catch, I've had some luck letting the lure suspend at a dead stop right in amongst them. If you don't have pointer, I've heard you can get similar castability out of, say, a Rogue, by drilling a small hole in the belly, allowing it to fill with water, and then plugging the hole with a bit of toothpick or something similar. It won't really sink very fast, and it'll cast much farther. This is hearsay though, and could cost you a lure.
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Old 05-06-11, 02:40 PM   #9
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thanks guys. i think i've tried everything everyone posted (even tried powerbaits) except a fluke. i dont think i can cast a fluke out that far no matter what size weight i use. pointers & lipless cranks are the only ones in my tackle that can reach this spot & ......actually come to think of it i didnt give the pointers a good rip yet. i'm pretty sure there are no muskies in this reservoir plus i dont think it could sustain such a big fish. there are plenty of dinks here and sunfish. the biggest LM i've caught here are 2lbs & the ones jumping appears to be in the 5 lbs range. yes i am shore bound & i dont think we are allowed to boat in this place. it's a very small area where i can walk the entire lake within 15 mins. i'm 90% sure they are bass jumping but not quite sure what they are feeding on. i don't think there are shad in here but i could be wrong. any other ideas if the pointers dont work? i might t-rig a fluke with heavier weight to see if i can reach this spot. thanks again & keep the suggestions coming
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Old 05-06-11, 03:59 PM   #10
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Try adding a tungsten nail weight into the fluke so you can cast it farther, and if they wont hit the fluke, try a small plastic worm 4", with a small nail weight. I went through the same thing a few years ago and after about 1 hour of trying everything in my tackle box i threw a weightless bubblegum pink worm into the school and caught one on every cast until they quit schooling. Also yamamoto shad shape worm works good too. Looks like a small fluke.
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Old 05-06-11, 04:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boloson View Post
How to catch jumping fish
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Old 05-06-11, 04:43 PM   #12
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Quote:
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If it was only that easy but the problem is they're 50 yds away
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Old 05-06-11, 05:30 PM   #13
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On schoolers I always throw a topwater. Most of the time it's a Iovino Splash it if I can get close, but if I can't reach with that, I tie on a Spook.
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Old 05-06-11, 06:43 PM   #14
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they are feeding on shad. try a rooster tail inline spinnerbait. or get a cst net and see waht happens,lol.
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Old 05-06-11, 07:00 PM   #15
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Believe me Bama if I had a net these bass better watch out but how in hell am I supposed to chuck it 50 yds?
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Old 05-17-11, 06:03 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boloson View Post
Believe me Bama if I had a net these bass better watch out but how in hell am I supposed to chuck it 50 yds?
Bama's recommendation is actually a solid one.

It is actually very easy to chuck out a rooster tail. Carolina rig it (in its basic form, i.e., weight in front of the hook).

You can use any suitable weight and tie it to the mainline. Then take about a 2' leader... attach one end to the weight and the other to the rooster tail. I reckon a 1/2 weight would do the trick.

I'd also try some spoons.
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Old 05-18-11, 08:30 AM   #17
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Kastmasters are typically salt water baits (I use them for summer fluke and blue fish) and the hooks aren't that sharp. Switch the hooks out immediately if you're bass or trout fishing. Any large tackle shop with salt water baits will have a supply.
There are other spoon type baits that you can use.....Hopkins or a Silver Buddy for example.
yes the hooks on those things are the best quality. i just bought some more from dicks sporting goods....not exactly the cheapest but only bought 4.

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Bama's recommendation is actually a solid one.

It is actually very easy to chuck out a rooster tail. Carolina rig it (in its basic form, i.e., weight in front of the hook).

You can use any suitable weight and tie it to the mainline. Then take about a 2' leader... attach one end to the weight and the other to the rooster tail. I reckon a 1/2 weight would do the trick.

I'd also try some spoons.
never tried c-rigging before. would it work on such a shallow pond? & i'm not quite sure what u & bama mean by rooster tail. are u referring to the trailer hooks with the feathers or the brand "rooster tail" for trout fishing? i have the kasmaster spoons with a rooster tail trebble but the jumping bass aren't going for anything i throw at them. this particular bass is jumping through lilly pads vertically into the air. from 40 -50 yds away it looks huge & i estimate it to be in the double digit range. still havent tried the fluke yet but in all honesty i've never seen a single shad in this pond. punching gear perhaps?
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Old 06-02-11, 04:04 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boloson View Post
Believe me Bama if I had a net these bass better watch out but how in hell am I supposed to chuck it 50 yds?

HAHAHA Agreed
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Old 05-06-11, 07:02 PM   #19
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lol, i was serious about the rooster tail bud. i got one tied on at all times almost.
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Old 05-06-11, 10:10 PM   #20
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My .02

Bass do that here in FL and very very finniky and spooky. The only way I can get em is really light line and a bettle spin (change the head size as heavy as you need to cast out, I use up to a 3/8 oz head) , a cast master spoon that cast a mile, or a small 2" swimbait on up to a1/2 oz head. Throw all of them and burn them back on the surface or just below waking the bait. The cast master is actually the easiest to reel straight in. Reel it fast! 3-4 cranks and kill it or just reel it straight. They usually crush it. Other than that, a swim jig maybe? With a big transparent skirt to look like a small school of tiny fish or bugs?
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Old 05-07-11, 02:36 AM   #21
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My .02

Bass do that here in FL and very very finniky and spooky. The only way I can get em is really light line and a bettle spin (change the head size as heavy as you need to cast out, I use up to a 3/8 oz head) , a cast master spoon that cast a mile, or a small 2" swimbait on up to a1/2 oz head. Throw all of them and burn them back on the surface or just below waking the bait. The cast master is actually the easiest to reel straight in. Reel it fast! 3-4 cranks and kill it or just reel it straight. They usually crush it. Other than that, a swim jig maybe? With a big transparent skirt to look like a small school of tiny fish or bugs?
I completely agree with the kastmaster technique. It will fall through the bait balls and when they are in that hunting frenzy, they won't take time to investigate. Additionally, this bait can be cast very far.
A second option is to go heavy with a drop shot. The water may be deep, but the goal is to fall on the shad and let it drop through the school. This technique worked for me today using a 4" robo hologram shad.
One of the biggest keys is no not wait for the bass to jump. Watch for the shad activity. They will first make the water ripple and then they will start jumping out of the water, away from the bass. As soon as you see the shad jumping, start casting. You want to catch the buster on the way up rather than trying to get them on the way down.

I think that the other baits would be okay if it wasn't as far as you described.

Another choice
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Old 05-07-11, 03:49 AM   #22
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Yes I've heard hood things about cast master spoons. Any particular color works better compared to others?
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Old 05-06-11, 10:33 PM   #23
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Try a wadding out close to them and tossing a big spook or a 3/4 oz spinnerbait to 'em. See what happens.
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Old 05-06-11, 10:43 PM   #24
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Really appreciate all the suggestions guys. My main problem is the distance. Only a select few lures will cast that far into its range so I'm kinda limited. Will try to get closer somehow or weigh down some flukes.
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Old 05-06-11, 10:51 PM   #25
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"i dont think i can cast a fluke out that far no matter what size weight i use" Bol, I don't know if you have ever thrown a weightless fluke, but you can get some mega distance out of them on a MH-F rod. At least that is what I am using to cast them. If you haven't tried it, give em a try. If you come across the Bass Assassin soft jerks, pick some of those up. they are more dense and will carry further.
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