A change in bottom structure presents different challenges

It’s no secret that if you fish enough different impoundments, or river systems, you will find all kinds of different bottom structure. I would venture to say that you could experience different bottom types on your own lake if you just move around enough to find it. On the Tennessee River the common thread is grass, but different types of grass present different bottom types. There is also rock, muck, sand, red clay, stumps and more - all of which become heaven for bass during different times of the year.
The key is to understand the bottom structure of where you’re fishing; what time of year the bass utilize that structure, what baits are best on this bottom type and how to fish it. When you have this knowledge locked into your memory bank, moving around your lake becomes easier and you’ll catch more fish.
Rock is a common winter location so let’s start with this; you generally find rocky areas next to the bank, causeways or bridges. Rock is an ideal winter location because it retains warmth during the sun of the day and in the winter anything that holds heat attracts bass. Many people put out rock piles for fishing locations during the winter. I like to utilize a football jig around rocky areas it’s a great emulator of crawfish and can be slowly moved, hopped or dragged on the bottom.
As we turn toward the shore warming muck becomes one of the first areas bass go to as they start to migrate toward the spawn. Generally muck is dark so it absorbs sunlight and heats up quickly during the day, the bait fish move quickly to these dark, warmer areas and hence the bass move there to feed. Finding mucky areas is easy as pockets, shallow bays or manmade drains off of highways all produce muck late in the winter. I like fishing a swim jig through these areas, it’s a fast way to cover water and generally the bass are there to feed and are fairly aggressive. It’s also safe to assume that with the many types of grass it is also a great winter location, especially deeper grass beds where you can erratically move jerk baits over the top.

Dunham's Sports

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