When Is It Too Cold to Bass Fish?

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Bass anglers often pack away their fishing gear during winters, although there is a good chance you can catch plenty of bass in any lake. When is it too cold to bass fish? Bass fishing enthusiasts can explore the answer by planning a trip in winter or getting to know more about how bass behaves in winter.

When Is It Too Cold to Bass Fish?

It is too cold to bass fish when the water temperatures drop below 40°F because bass slow down and their bite becomes sluggish. When the water temperature is between 41°-50°F, that’s when anglers will first start to notice bass becoming sluggish, though you can still catch the fish with the right lures. Once it drops below this, very low temperatures can be too cold to fish for bass.

A man fishing out in the cold

While it’s not impossible to catch bass in cold water temperatures, it becomes harder. You will need to know where to find the bass in the water and adjust your strategy in order to catch them.

Is Water Temperature Important for Bass Fishing?

Water temperature is an essential factor, and if anglers know what stage bass are in at various temperatures, they can catch fish every time they head out, regardless of the season. Additionally, you can understand what kind of gear, lures, or live bait you will need to attract them at various temperatures.

  • Temperatures below 40°F is the winter season when bass moves out of cold waters. In landlocked water bodies, the bass begins to swim deeper.
  • Bass fishing is possible all year long, even when the lake is frozen. However, it can be slow.

Does Air Temperature Impact Bass Fishing?

Air temperature does not impact bass fishing directly, however, as the air temperature rises, so does the insect activity. Bass do not miss the chance to feed on any kind of prey, be it insects on the surface of the water. However, this difference in air temperature will only impact bass fishing if it fluctuates for over a week.

Are Bass Fish Active in Cold Weather?

Bass are not active during winters as they store enough fat from feeding aggressively during fall. They move deeper into the lake when the temperature falls. This fish is not eager to chase attractive lures on the surface and will not cover distances to catch bait fish. Slower fishing methods to get underwater bite will work best if the water temperature is above 40°F.

an image of a person bass fishing in a cold weather

Where to Find and Catch Bass Fish in Winter

If anglers can spot a deep area in the lake, that is close to shallow spots, bait fish will be swimming around, and bass can move to these spots to feed on bait. Where bait fish is present, bass can get hooked. You can use technology to locate deeper areas in the lakes.

Do Bass Bite in Cold Weather?

Bass bites in all seasons and will not give up the opportunity to feed if they can. In winters, bass fish bite is lazy, as the fish does not cover great distances to catch the lure on the surface of water. Similarly, bass will not swim around to look for bait.

Feeding Patterns

The feeding patterns of bass are slow in winter due to the slow metabolism. When they see bait, it will swim to it and bite. Bass will not chase lures or swim around aggressively, although if a bait fish is in the vicinity, bass will make the most of the opportunity.

Lures to Use in the Winter for Bass

Anglers can make the most of this behavior by using slower fishing techniques during winter and locate the right spots, they will be able to catch bass on the coldest day of the season too. The correct selection of lures is essential if you want to get lucky in winters.

The drop-shot rig works vertically and horizontally and you can make the most from it in winter by lowering it into the water. Soft plastic lures, hair jigs, and jigging spoons will be best for winter.

An image of a person fishing on a cold weather

Related Questions

Bass anglers must know all about fishing in winters to maximize their chances of catching fish without too much effort. They may have a lot of questions, and finding answers for all of them is part of improving the fishing game.

Is it Harder to Catch Bass in the Winter?

It is not harder to catch bass in winter, although it can be less fruitful as this fish does not bite aggressively, and moves to deeper spots in the lake. Anglers will have to apply techniques that can bring success, such as the correct lures and locating the right spots. 

Will Bass Bite Topwater in the Winter?

Bass will not bite topwater lures in winter. Topwater lures float on the surface and bass fish will not travel upward to the water surface where temperature is lower to catch the lure. Furthermore, the metabolism of bass slows down and it remains in deep waters and only bites for bait fish swimming close to it. 


It is too cold to bass in prime winter when the temperatures drop below 40°F. However, by locating the right spots and understanding water temperature effects, anglers can catch bass during the cold season.