If you’re anything like us, the longer and warmer the days get, the more we think about those after-work sessions on the pond or creek, hunting largemouth, and smallmouth bass. Bass hold a special place in our hearts, mainly due to their aggression and ever-eager willingness to crush a fly that moves through their zone. As water temps continue to climb during the spring, these green footballs will begin to wake up, spread into the shallows and begin to feed, fattening up for their upcoming spawn later in the season. So we looked in our spring bass fly boxes, and found the most well-loved patterns to share with you!
This pattern has quickly become one of our go-to fly patterns for bass, regardless of the season. Leeches are a year-round food source for many fish, and bass can’t seem to keep their mouths off this pattern. We find that olive, brown and black seem to be the hottest colors where bass are concerned. Dead drift it, jig it, or twitch it slowly through the hole you’re fishing, and something is bound to take a bite. But stay tight to your fly, bass love to inhale this pattern the moment it stops moving. This pattern also doubles as a very effective pattern for spring carp!
Developed by Bob Clouser to target smallmouth bass on the Susquehanna River, this pattern has been a staple for bass and saltwater anglers for decades. This puppy rides hook point up, reducing hang-ups and enticing those hungry bass looking for struggling baitfish twitching along the river bottom. The most effective colorway we’ve found is chartreuse over white, but we’d recommend having it in a few different colors that match the baitfish in your local waters!
When bass are sitting shallow harassing bait, the unweighted deceiver is what we reach for. Developed by the late Lefty Kreh, this is another tried-and-true bass pattern that has been around for decades. When tied sparsely, Deceivers hover and flutter right in the middle of the water column, attracting any bass hunting for an easy meal!
“Oooooh shiny” is what every bass in the water column say to themselves when a Kreelex twitches past. Designed to mimic the spoon baits that gear-anglers use to crush fish, these flies, tied in silver, gold, and copper are one of our favorite speculating patterns when we’re searching for our first bass of the year.
Just like the smallmouth who love to munch on them, Crayfish begin to stir from their winter holes as water temperatures rise. When they do, they’re usually lethargic and make easy prey for marauding bass looking for easy, protein-rich meals. We’ve featured a ton of crayfish patterns over these past years, and you can check out all of those on our Youtube Channel’s fly tying playlist!
Dan Zazworsky’s passion is sharing his love of fly fishing with anyone that will listen, read or watch. You can find him exploring new waters every day while chasing any fish that will eat a fly!