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How To Find Fish Fast On A New Lake – Pro Tips | Bass Fishing

How To Find Fish Fast On A New Lake – Pro Tips | Bass Fishing

Glenn: Hey folks, Glenn May here with,
and today I’m asking the elite pros questions that you submitted on our forums. Let’s see what they have to say. Chris from Maryland, he asked, “If you were
scheduled to fish a lake or river that you’ve not had the chance to pre-fish or haven’t
fished in a long time, what are the three most important things you look at?” Gerald Swindle: Time of year, water temperature,
and water clarity. That pretty much determines what you’re going
to fish, how you’re going to fish, and where you’re going to fish. The water temp can always tell you is it spawn,
if it’s just spring and the water temperature is 60 degrees then we know there’s probably
some fish spawning. If it’s the fall and the water temperature
is 60 degrees we probably know the fish are headed to the back of the creek. So, your water temperature is always going
to be crucial. The time of the year is gonna dictate kinda
where the fish should be, teamed with the water temperature, and then the clarity would
be what color bait you’d fish and what style you would fish. Glenn: What are the three most important things
you look for? Jason Christie: Well, a river…be safe, because,
you know, rivers…I think of rivers and I think of the Arkansas River, stumpy and stuff
like that. Be careful. Just, the conditions, if I haven’t been to
a place, you can always show up to an event and just fish the conditions, fish wind. If I haven’t been there, I’m not practicing,
and the wind’s blowing 20, I’m gonna run out there and I’m gonna go to the windiest banks,
and fish moving baits, and I’ve won a lot of tournaments doing that. I’ve won a lot of big tournaments doing that. Wind’s not blowing? That’s kinda…that might be a little tough,
but, you know, if they’re spawning or if they’re deep, pick you a place on the map out there
and go out there and start dragging deep. You just really have to fish…you really
have to fish the conditions and just develop some confidence quickly and figure out that
pattern as quick as you can if you haven’t been there. And believe in yourself. If you get…one bite is not a pattern. Two bites, maybe. Three, you’re good. You get that third bite doing something, have
confidence that what you have figured out is the right thing, and have confidence in
yourself to run it. Glenn: That works for me. That makes total sense too, because when you
go out on the lake you’ve gotta throw what you’re confident in, but most importantly,
start off with more of a search type bait. See what’s going on, and that plays into what
you just said. Go to a windy bank, go to a windy area, throw
a fast moving bait. I mean, covering water looking for those bites,
that’s what I’m hearing, right? Jason: Yeah, you wanna…in our practice periods,
and whenever we get to a lake that I’ve not been to or haven’t been to in a long time,
I’m going to fish as fast as possible. And it’s…if anything, it’s just where I
can see the entire lake, or a big part of it, and get a feel for it. You can fish through an area and just think
about it. If you were to go through it real slow, you’d
get 5 bites…say you’d get 5 bites. If I go through it real fast, I get 1 or 2. I kinda equate that to getting…I feel like,”Hey,
if I get 1 or 2, if I come back through there and slow down I can probably get more,” but
also that lets me cover a big part of the area and a big part of the lake because we
only get two and a half days. And you may see after you spend a day on the
south end practicing and you’re going granny slow, well by the end of the second day you
get up there and there’s topped out hydrilla on the upper end, you probably know that you
made a mistake and you’ve missed out on all that time. So, you wanna kind of…when I get to a lake,
the first day, I kinda pick an area and I fish, and I just take off and I fish everything
and I develop some kind of pattern. And then the second day is my run around and
try to pick the best areas for that pattern. And then the third day is just go and make
sure I hadn’t missed anything. And it works. Everybody has a little different way of doing
it, but whenever you haven’t been there, you have no history there or anything like that,
you just have to move and move until you get it figured out. Justin Lucas: If I haven’t fished them in
a long time, my number one’s gonna be what time of year is it? What stage should the fish be in? I’d wanna know that. I would wanna know what the weather pattern
was leading a week up to there, and what the water level is wherever I’m going too. Knowing the water level, whether it’s high,
low, if I had been there before, what it is comparable to that. So many times, so often, we go places where
the water level is just different, and you can’t go back to the same areas and catch
fish. You have to fish new ones, and paying attention
to the water level at the lake or river wherever you’re at is extremely important. Glenn: So don’t fish memories. Justin: Try not to. I’ve heard Brent Ehrler say it before and
I really do it myself. I try not to save too many waypoints unless
it’s a hard object that I know is gonna be there forever. If it’s a rock pile or something like that. I try not to save waypoints because they’re
always changing and I don’t want to go back and fish stuff that was good before. Doesn’t always…rarely means that it’ll be
good again. Glenn: So let’s say I take you to a lake you’ve
never seen before. What’s the first thing…Two things, what’s
the first thing you look for, and what’s the first bait you pull out? Justin: That’s an interesting question. First thing I would look at, water clarity,
and if was dirty I’m probably gonna pull out some kind of spinner bait, crank bait, something
like that, Berkely Squarebull, cover a lot of water. And if it’s clean water I’m probably gonna
pull out some kind of Berkely plastic. Maybe it’s a Pitboss that I’m flipping or
a Havoc Bottom Hopper on a shaky head or drop shot. Glenn: Perfect. What are the three most important things that
you look for? Chris Zaldain: Oh man, unfamiliar waters,
that’s my jam. I love fishing just run and gun style. I call it freestyle fishing. The first three things I look for, one is
the most obvious cover in the lake. Like, let’s say we’ve got a Florida lake that’s
a big round bowl. I’m gonna look for that one obvious dock with
the green arrows sticking on it. I just…the most obvious piece of cover and
that’s generally where I start. So, that’s one, or the most obvious main like
point, whatever it is, I’ll always start there to try to get me clues. Two…wind. Wind is a huge, huge factor in what we do. Wind always blows no matter what. A lot of anglers run from the wind, and I
like chasing the wind. I love fishing the windiest banks possible. Breaks up light penetration, it pushes baitfish
in to some of those banks. And three…water clarity. Water clarity is a big one. If it’s a southern type lake where dominant
patterns, like flipping a black and blue jig, I wanna find that dirty water. If we’re up north I wanna find the cleanest
water possible to throw those little worms and swimbaits, stuff like that. Glenn: Great advice. I think that’s…those three things will put
you on fish, guys. Play this video again and listen to what he
just told you. Justin: Absolutely, I stick by those. Kevin VanDam: That’s a really good question,
and we do this all the time. So, for me, I wanna come up with a general
seasonal pattern and find out what areas I think are gonna fit that seasonal pattern
for the type of body of water that you’re going to, whether it’s a river, a natural
lake, a reservoir, a tidal body of water. So, I know that bass do certain things during
each season of the year in those systems. Then I wanna get out there and assess the
exact conditions. Look at the water clarity, the habitat type,
and then when I actually get out and start practicing I don’t spend more than 10 minutes
in one spot doing the same thing without having some kind of positive response. So, if I’m there for 10 minutes and nothing
happens I’m gonna be moving on, I’m gonna be changing baits, I’m gonna be doing something
different because if you spend an hour in each little location you go to, before you
know it you’ve wasted your whole day. Glenn: Now that’s pre-fishing? Kevin: Pre-fishing. Yep. Glenn: So, what if you’re fun fishing and
you’re not fishing tournaments and you’ve never been in this lake… Kevin: Same thing. Pre-fishing, it’s the same thing. You’re trying to learn, you’re trying to find
them, you wanna do it as quick as you can. Glenn: And there you have it. Great questions from the pros answering your
questions that were submitted on the forums on For more videos like this, check out our YouTube
channel or visit

100 comments on “How To Find Fish Fast On A New Lake – Pro Tips | Bass Fishing

  1. Great video as always, I am bad about staying in a spot to long, I get caught knowing I've caught fish in that spot before and not looking for new water, bad habits die hard but these tips will help

  2. Extremely helpful! Just getting back out on the water again after a few years, and this really helps get the gears going!

  3. This is a great video! Some killer tips here that will definitely get you on fish. I definitely don't move fast enough so that's one thing I'm working on this season!

  4. Very enlightening. They covered almost all the different situations one would encounter when fishing a new place they had never fished before.

  5. Wow and I would run away from windy banks and fish up in coves to get away from the wind. Need to change up my habits and try windy banks. Thanks

  6. Water clarity is always a major factor in the gravel pit lake I go to. It can be 1.5' today and 3 days from now it might be 4 to 5 feet. Today they wasn't on the wind blown bank, they were on the other bank

  7. Gman was dead on with his answer for his Question. temperature, clarity time of year… I also would throw in there to look at the weather pattern for the past few days…

  8. KVD is the best. Common thread was: water temp/seasons, water clarity and wind. I hate wind but I'll probably have to embrace it.

  9. great info for me. as a kayak fisherman without electronics, this helps a ton. I love trying new waters and I can put this to work right away!

  10. Great info! I used to fish weekly several years ago but work and life kept me off the water for way too long. Now that I have more time I'm getting back on the water and the tips found here are are great and get me up-to-date on current trends. Thanks!!!

  11. Swindle's comments make a lot of sense. breaking it down to those three specifics should enable you to fish any water, and Jason's comment about confidence is spot on.

  12. Assess the conditions (water temp, time of year, water clarity, and wind) …. then cover water and try different lures until you get a positive result (fish on). …. Lots of info packed into a short video! Thanks for the great content! Keep it coming! 👍

  13. Love to see the pros put on the spot…really good stuff. Time of year, water temp, wind, current, structure…all the keys to locating bass.

  14. My favourite part was 0:00 to 8:42! Full of great advice! I'm guilty of staying out of the wind and going to the same spots over and over again if I've caught some there before. Now I see that I'm really missing out! Thanks for helping us out BassResource!

  15. Time of year, water temp, and water clarity seem to be universal answers. This was a great video with info most anglers know, but need to be reminded of from time to time.

  16. Great info from the best of the best, easy to stay out of the wind but might have to brave the waves 🌊!

  17. I associate most with the approach Christie and VanDam mention…don't spend significant time in an area without a pattern. Moving to different water and changing lures, especially in unfamiliar lakes/rivers, seems to be key in producing more productive days than not.

  18. Lots of great advice….some of the ideas are the common answers but others are different, not fishing memories is one i haven't though of

  19. Kevin Van dam is definitely someone to listen too. I have seen him come back from last place on major league fishing and win. The tips from you glen are pretty good too and worth watching.

  20. i like the "obvious cover" route. If you are going to start somewhere start with something that looks fishy. The wind is something I don't do, which I will now consider doing.

  21. Very good information. The more I learn the better my chances. Thanks good to know to fish on windy days.

  22. awesome getting the perspective from some of the elite anglers. these tips apply to bank fishers as well. fishing the wind blown sides or finding the obvious structure "with the green arrows" are great places to start if you haven't fished that body of water before.

  23. Should have watched video before I went fishing other day, Not a single bite on a lake I have fished hundreds of times, Went to places I had got fish before should have to new areas.

  24. Funny how anglers said wind is your friend, people run from wind, I see it all the time where I fish, all professional anglers live for wind! Water Clarity is another thing all pros talked about always good to hear about that, seeing how everyone breaks down water is awesome! One of my favorite videos!!

  25. Being a creature of habit, I like fishing water I have fished before. But, it is necessary to change things up!

  26. Awesome video with great information. I don't really stand in one spot for to long. Always great to hear it from the pros

  27. A little wind is ok where I'm at but I have never done well when it's really windy, mainly because the lakes i fish funnel wind and when it is blowing any harder than 15mph fishing is nearly impossible and boat control is thrown out the window. All of the other tips mentioned are pretty spot on though.

  28. Excellent video, it's good to hear some common sense stuff from the pros that is easy for simple fishermen like myself to digest.


  30. Thank you, thank you, thank you for asking a very important question to bass fishing professionals without the question scripted for TV! These pros were willing to give the layman fisherman some really good advice that they rely upon to consistently catch fish. Can we have more videos like this when a pro angler or recent tournament winner shares their knowledge of the keys to their current success?

  31. very helpful! the saying that the third bite signals the patter really makes sense. fishing fast and covering water is a great tournament strategy.

  32. Great information ….. but why do I get the district feeling that the guy conducting the interviews is actually as much or more knowledgeable about Bass Fishing than the guys he's interviewing ; ). God bless the second guy he interviewed though ….. articulation isn't one of his strong points.

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