What water temp. do you look for to kick in your pre-spawn approach?

Brent Lance

I have had my best success when the water hits 52 for smallies and 58 for largemouth. They really seem to come out of that lethargic winter "coma"  around that time. Took the boat out on the potomac on Sunday and the water was 47. GETTING CLOSE GENTLEMAN.

Posted by Brent Lance created over 10 years ago - last updated over 10 years ago
1083 views - 5 responses -

James Buonanno

in my area the lakes are ranging from about 43 to 47 on a good day but right around 50 is my mark. already got a few under my belt on rattletraps and spinners. good discusion!

Posted by James Buonanno Expert Member over 10 years ago - Report Abuse

Henry V

It can be tricky. Small ponds warm up faster, so they are the best place to start. Deep lakes are slow to warm, so the shallows work best there. I look for shallow water where the wind is pushing the warmer top water. That is the key.

Be careful with thermometers on boats - they don;t go very deep. If the surface temp is only 50, it's a safe bet the rest below is still too cold.


Posted by Henry V Elite Member over 10 years ago - Report Abuse

Dennis Huskins

I look for the north side of lakes (most sun ) and in the shallows and coves out of the wind. At 48 the pickerel wake up and eat, at about 53 the bass come alive and feast. The rest of the lake and deeper water stay quiet.

Posted by Dennis Huskins Elite Member over 10 years ago - Report Abuse

There are some big bass being caught in NC already. I've personally caught 6 and 7+ pound fish, and have seen plenty of 7s, a few 8s, and even a 9+ lb fish being caught.

I don't carry a thermometer with me, but I think the ticket right now is finding areas where the fish have access to shallow water on the north side of the lake or pond.

If you're fishing a river or creek, I've also had good luck so far in the highly oxygenated water below falls/rapids, in addition to the shallows. I've read that as fish get larger, oxygen becomes more of a constraint on their growth than food, so there are usually some big ones hanging out near the fast moving water, which also brings a steady supply of food.

Posted by Jason Robinson over 10 years ago - Report Abuse

Henry V

Jason's right - water below rapids is killer, especially pools.

Posted by Henry V Elite Member over 10 years ago - Report Abuse

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