James Niggemeyer’s “to do” list for winter bass fishing is a short one. The Yamaha Pro looks for vertical structure that changes the bottom depth; he checks that structure for possible vegetation cover and he slows his lure presentation. It’s a strategy that has served him well during his career as both a professional tournament angler as well as a guide on Lake Fork, Texas.
“In cold weather, bass really gravitate to vertical structure, which allows them to easily and quickly move up and down in the water column if the water temperature changes rather than travel a long distance to find agreeable conditions,” explains Niggemeyer, who will be fishing his third Bassmaster Classic® world championship in February. “The ideal vertical structure is a steep-sided creek channel or a point that drops straight down, but the actual amount of depth change does not have to be that great. I have caught a lot of winter bass where the depth change was five feet or less.”
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