Night Bites

By Scott Norton

Weather in the heart of summer can be challenging to say the least. Many anglers learn the art of fishing cover with knowledge of the rigging and the talent it takes to make accurate casts. Some anglers have a change in plan all together. The sweltering heat can take the energy right out of you so some anglers will go at night. There are some bass that just bite at night and they are not afraid to let that aggression out.

The art of fishing the night cycle is using stealth to your advantage. These bass are not used to hearing the sound of a motor like the bass in the day. The best part is that they are not pressured at night like in the day. I have fished from a boat to a kayak and this is makes the plan different as well. The advantage of a boat is covering a lot of water in a short amount of time but you can alert bass of your presence. The advantage with kayaks is the shear stealth of silence but you cannot cover much water in a given time. Either choice is great and even better if you have both to choose from.

Choosing lures is just like it is in the daytime. It comes down to water clarity and the amount of light from the moon you have. I grew up hearing you have to fish a certain color but my own experience tells me otherwise. These fish have adapted to the night and that includes their sight so bass will be bass when it comes to senses. I would say the difference in fishing at night is that you will not have to worry about downsizing your line like the day cycle.

You’ll notice that you will have the lake to yourself at night. It feels nice to not have to fight the crowds like you do in the day. This, I believe, makes fish unaware of being hunted. I am surprised that very few anglers try out the cycle, they don’t know what they are missing out on. The pattern of fishing is also different since you’re not fishing in the cover because you are primarily fishing for roaming bass. The best times to go are during the new moon and during the full moon. The new moon is very dark but you catch bigger bass. The full moon is nice because you can see without light. The only time you need it is when you are tying a knot.

If you ever find yourself in a routine and you want to try something different, or if you want to satisfy your curiosity, this is it. I know some anglers that will not fish the dog days of summer but they are really missing out on some of the most fun fishing. There is always a way to switch gears and make things new again.

Scott Norton is a Western North Carolina native. Born in Asheville, N.C., he is a long-time hunter, angler and weekend warrior.