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How These Fronts Affect Fish - Thoughts?


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Looking for your guys thoughts on how these crazy summer cold fronts we've been having in the STL area are affecting the fishing. Looking to get out for some small lake bass fishing this weekend. Last week it seemed like the fishing was good before the front and as it stalled over the area, but then, when it cleared the fish just turned off. This was last Friday. This morning and afternoon with cloud cover and the approaching rain later today seems like it could be very good. But I worry about the fishing not being so hot tomorrow after the front has come through.

I know anytime you can get out is the best time but based on the weather; when do you think the best time is?

- Before the front

- During the front

- After the front

My experience has normally been right before the front comes in the fish go crazy. After it goes through they shut down.

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I don't put much stock in any of the old fishing cliches. I've been skunked countless times when everything was supposedly '"perfect". I've slayed bass in 6 inches of water after a brutal cold front fishing in the sleet.

One particular trip stands out in my mind. In early May of 2008 my father drove in from Pennsylvania and we headed to the Lake of the Ozarks for a 4-5 day trip. I think we got down there on a Tuesday, made a run to the grocery store, and then launched the boat and got on the water about noon. That first day was one of the greatest days of fishing in my life. We caught so many fish, it was ridiculous. It was a Wiggle Wart bite (my favorite). But my Dad was tired from the long drive the day before and we decided to only fish for a few hours that first day. I was dissapointed but didn't protest too much.

When we went out the next day we could not buy a bite. Everything was exactly the same. The temps, the skies, boat traffic, there were no fronts, nothing. Identical.

We don't understand nearly as much as we think we do when it comes to fish and when and why they bite (or don't).

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Heading into Fall is the best fishing period by far IMO, the fish aren't "moved" by any thing other than feeding opportunities. No spawning urges, ect.

The only thing that complicates the act of getting fish to bite, I think, is the abundance of bite sized prey fish in impoundments during that period. But in ponds that do not have shad most of the forage has grown to a size that challenges all but the real Hawgs, so the average sized gamefish are usually an easy sell.

Instability in the weather always presents a challenge for an angler, but on any given day on ANY body of water SOMEONE will always figure out a way to load the boat. So if you're fishing hard and haven't had a bite in 20 minutes take a short break and change your MO

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Take this to the bank...it's money.

Always fish like it's going to be you that does it.

on any given day on ANY body of water SOMEONE will always figure out a way to load the boat.

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Agree with 405z06 and Wrench, all that post front stuff is overrated. A fish still has to eat sometime. The fast falling river level has a much bigger effect than a front.

"Honor is a man's gift to himself" Rob Roy McGregor

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only when we get a front that causes a big temp. drop, bluebird sky and high winds. If the bugs are still active fish will still eat them. If the only result is rain and cloudy skies when I am on the lake I look for overhanging trees or brush and throw a small jig under the trees if any bugs are getting blown off and hitting the water. Some of my best catches have been at those times. If the trees get blown into the water that is even better.

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My .2 cents worth summer fronts. Before the front , when its cloudy and still a south or west wind, the fish will be biting, Use moving baits or quick pitch soft plastics. Even after the front hits, if the wind remains ,or clouds, its still ok,,Not awesome but ok, once the sky clears....time to buckle down,,fish slow.

The last 2 day trip I spent on Lake of the Ozarks comes to mind. The first day was major post front. No clouds, bright bluebird skies. We tried deep structure, not much happening, they just stopped generating. Only way we got bit was targeting brush around deeper docks, The bites were few and light.

Day 2 was had the same temps/ light wind but there were some white puffy clouds, not many, but some. And the bite was on. Places we only caught small fish day before were suddenly full of quality bites.

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They usually turn on right before a storm. Feeding before they have to find shelter from the rain?

After a big front passes, the bass seem to turn off for a day. Lateral lines seem to be affected by air pressure for some reason so I have been told.

But fish feed on rising water, shut down on falling water. Rising water brings in more food, falling water causes them to drop back to normal places.

But, if you hold your mouth just right, you can catch a fish most any time if you know what they want to eat.

"Life has become immeasurably better since I have been forced to stop taking it seriously."

Hunter S. Thompson

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