Catching a Six Pound Deep Water Largemouth

Great Way To Start The Finest Month For Deepwater Largemouth

Saturday of the Labor Day Long wknd is usually far too busy for me on Lake Simcoe, but I hadn't fished largies on my home lake for almost a month so I needed my fix bad. I got an early start and watched the sun peer over the eastern horizon from my Simcoe County vantage point on the west side. I anxiously headed straight for my number one largemouth waypoint. Upon arrival, I tossed my marker and then threw my trusty Rapala Skitter Walk which has accounted for so many big bass on similar early morning excursions. Forty minutes later as the sun brightened and still no fish, I switched rods and picked up another old reliable, a fire tiger colored Rapala DT 16.  Cranking in about 15 feet, I finally landed a 2 pounder and a couple of shorts but before I knew it, another 40 minutes went by without a sniff.


Time had come for a slower presentation and my go-to big 5" brown tube; rigged on a 1/4 oz. darter head with a needle-sharp Gamakatsu Hook. I worked the edges of shallow weed patches in the 10-12 foot range, the mid-cruising sections of 12-15 feet and then off the drops in 15-20 feet for another 40 minutes without a take. I then expanded the range of my main area with my electric - hoping the lack of veg normally present here would show up not too far away, along with newly positioned largemouth. Yep despite a tactic that often pays dividends when searching for largemouth in deep water, this time it didn't. So, you guessed it, another 40 minutes and no more fish.

Off to number two waypoint ... and to make a long story short - the same scenario took place however here I basically gave just 15 minutes to each procedure/lure before I moved on. Then it was a run and gun pattern checking out various waypoints that have traditionally produced off and on at this time of year.  Truth be told, more often than not if there are largies present in your deep water haunts - you'll know it within a few casts.  My problem has been … and remains to this day – that the better a spot has been to me in the past – the more time I force myself to stay there – trying different baits, different colors, different angles, speeds and presentations until I hope against hope that I’ll finally trigger the buggers into striking.  Admittedly this tactic does work occasionally but way more often these bass tell me they’re around and willing to play shortly after I get there.

By 11am that Saturday I still had only caught the one bass and now it was flat calm, blue bird conditions and the expected gauntlet of other recreational boaters and anglers were all over the place.

Time to try somewhere much different ... so, realizing weed growth everywhere I went was far less than usual, I moved way out, closer to much deeper water than the 20 feet. For successful deepwater largemouth, I'm a firm believer that the presence of nearby shallower water with good cover (ie aquatic plants of various species) is key. So in this new area I looked for shallower weedgrowth and found a bit in the 15 foot range and then started marking some baitfish nearby in 23'-24'. Neither the shallow section nor the deep produced ... but when I caught a couple right at 20' – with my boat in 28’, on two successive casts I thought I may be onto something. One fish is interesting … two often is the start of a pattern!

I looked for similar transitions on my Lowrance electronics and when coupled with balls of baitfish caught several more nice largemouth. This was turning into a great day after all I thought, as I tossed my big brown tube ahead of me once again into 20'. With 20 lb Suffix Braid and a 10lb Suffix Floro leader on a one piece MH action Rapala Shift rod ... there's very few bites that I don't feel ... and the hit came very similar to a perch bite - but I set hard anyway. Almost instantly I knew this was not another average largie ... but it wasn't until she came up near 15' that the super clear waters allowed me to see the true size of this hawg. After a feeble attempt to clear air, I slipped my thumb and forefinger into her wide gapping mouth alongside my Nitro, took a couple quick pics, weighed her on my Rapala Digital Scale and watched her swim way back down in all her glory.

At 6.3 lbs (the scale bounced between 6.2 and 6.4) it was easily my biggest bass of the 2016 season and an incredible way to start four weeks of fish-filled vacation.


When I stopped shaking I looked around me, and as if by magic a flotilla of boats must have seen me land that fish and others, because I was literally surrounded - so I made a slow but deceivingly steady exit with my electric motor and lead them all off to another shallower area where I hoped they would stay and play with the plentiful perch. Fortunately that worked for the most part and I then headed off to repeat the same pattern elsewhere. No other giants showed their face, but by 2pm my bass thumb said it had enough for one day, so I packed it in; knowing there would be plenty more opportunities for the next four weeks.


Wil wrote this introductory piece on the Labor Day weekend in 2016 … and promised he’d cover the details of his other fishing excursions and what he learned during the rest of his September holidays.  To read about those 22 days of adventures on eight different lakes, just click here .