take advantage of the megabass SonicSide in the Pre-Spawn
Of all the seasons, the pre-spawn period of the year without a doubt is the time of the most radical transitions in terms of fish movement and behavior.
Rising water temperature plays a key role in these transitions, but more importantly are the length of the daylight hours. As each day gets longer, the fish react and begin the steady transition into actual spawning rituals.
Pre-spawn periods vary depending upon which part of the country you live in, but in today’s topic of flat side cranking with baits like the Megabass SonicSide, we will use as an example, man-made lakes in the central and south central parts of the country.
Pre-spawn fishing on these types of lakes means a variety of techniques will be working…jerkbaits, jigs, crankbaits and spinnerbaits primarily.
But at some point during this process, the flat side crankbait, like the SonicSide, will outproduce all of these other lures, in terms of quality and quantity of bass.
Here are some key factors that will create a productive flat side bite…
- Water temperatures approaching 50 degrees
- Unusually stained, but not muddy water, such as following several days of heavy rain
- Steady or cooling air temperatures
- Lakes with abundant rocky shorelines
many suspended bass will move towards the shoreline
The more that a lake has these preceding conditions, the better the flat side bite will be, and here are the reasons why…
The rising, stained water will move many of the suspended bass towards the shoreline, in very shallow water. Rocky banks will hold heat better than other types of banks, and the fish will position tight on the bank, taking advantage of the cover the stained water and rock provides; as well as the warmth.
You don’t want a warming trend once you get on a flat side bite, because this will cause the bass to slowly get off the crankbaits, due to their personalities changing with the warmup.
The reason a flat side is so effective under these conditions, is the subtlety of the lure.
The SonicSide has a fairly tight wobble, which is key under these condition for triggering strikes. The water displacement and vibration the actual flat side of the crankbait produces is one of the elements that triggers both a feeding and reaction strike from the bass. The look and feel of the SonicSide is completely different than any other crankbait profile.
The correct setup and boat positioning are a big factor.
The SonicSide performs best on lighter line, such as 8-10 pound test. Not only will the lighter line get the bait deeper, it gives the bait the maximum action. This allows the angler to make a 45-degree angle cast to the bank, and “walk” the bait down the slope by changing rod positions.
Pair this strategy with a 7 foot rod, with a medium soft tip, like the Megabass OrochiXX Jerkbait Special. The softer tip is critical to absorbing the strike of larger bass with the light line.
Boat positioning can make all the difference between success and failure. Depending on the slope of the bank you are fishing, you may need to parallel the bank, or cast at different angles to keep the bait in contact with the bottom. Like with any crankbait, deflecting the bait off objects is the most important part of generating strikes from the bass.
don't forget about your retrieve and cadence
Retrieve cadence is also important. The SonicSide performs best with a slow to medium retrieve and incorporating a “pull” when the bait reaches it deepest point. A “pull” and “stop” retrieve is particularly effective when utilizing the SonicSide.
Although flat side cranking is not as mainstream as many other techniques, its one that is well worth your time to get proficient with. There is no better time of the year than right now to give it a try!