Fairfax County, Virginia


Dan Grulke,
FCPA Fishing Coordinator

Fall Fishing - Targeting Bass

Fall is here and cool, crisp weather has started to emerge as the leaves change their hues. This means it is time to get a pole in the water, and perhaps find yourself a trophy.

The period between late summer and early fall is a great time to do some bass fishing if you have the right knowledge. This article will focus on the keys to successful, local fall bass fishing.  

The first and probably most important step is choosing the right lure and lure color. Crawfish imitation colors and silver/white are going to be your best color options. Here are a few lures that I recommend for targeting bass this time of year:

Swim Jig (Dirty Jigs Finesse Swim Jig or Lunkerhunt Natural Skirted Swim Jig). Fish it around boat docks, no matter what depth. Fish should still be holding up around there.

Finesse Worm (Strike King 3X Elaztech or Zoom/Yum). Fish it shallow on a Texas Rig, Carolina Rig or a Shaky Head setup.

Flipping Jig (Strike King Bitsy Flip ¼ oz or Catch Co Gamechanger Lures Trashmaster). Fish the jig both shallow and deep, swimming it or bouncing it along the bottom around cover.

Squarebill Crankbait (Strike King KVD or 6th Sense Cloud 9 Magnum). Fish it around shallow, visible cover or through schools of baitfish.

Topwater (Strike King Buzz King or 6th Sense MagDog Topwater). Buzzbaits around shallow cover, or a walking bait around schools of baitfish will prove successful this time of year.

The second step is to fish in the right body of water. Areas that have either rocky points, banks, shallow flats near creek or river channel, or matted vegetation are all excellent places to make a few casts and see what is lurking below.

In Fairfax County, you can find these bodies of water at Burke Lake, Huntsman Lake, Lake Accotink or Lake Mercer.

Bass will begin to move into shallower areas during this time of year due to hotter conditions creating a lack of oxygen in deeper spots.

As we move into the late summer and early fall period, monitor the water for those sharp 8- to 10-degree drops because this will put the bass into a frenzy and increase your chances of success.

Fishing after a heavy rain is another opportunity for anglers to increase their chances, as the rain will cause a change in water temperature and move baitfish out of the creeks.

Late summer and early fall offer some of the absolute best bass fishing you can experience.

Fairfax Virtual Assistant