If you're a bass fisherman, you probably often go to well known areas for bass in your area. Either parks with a small state fees to get in, camping areas or just some lakes in the area. While in some states this can be just fine for producing lunker bass. Some areas get fished very often, sometimes even making the bite slow and the trip a bit boring. Well, for some trying rebel techniques to find hidden ponds is extremely exciting and produce huge bass. It's also fun to show pictures to your friends and then say it's a secret spot. You even get to name the spot and watch your friends talk about a pond you named. It's fun stuff.
How to Find Hidden Bass Fishing Ponds
First and foremost, this is from experience. I happened to have a friend who does this all the time. In these spots, we have found some serious lunker bass. Also found ponds where every single cast produces a bass because it's completely un-fished. The crazy part about it, these pond were in the middle of huge cities like Irvine and other spots in Southern California. So depending on where you live, imagine what you can find near you.
Disclaimer: Don't get shot or cause danger to yourself by trespassing on peoples land. We have been kicked out of spots but we were safe about it. This is an informative article and anything you do is at your own risk.
So, how do you go about finding these hidden ponds you can brag about and what to look out for.
Google Earth: Google earth is a wonderful tool for this. Choose an area close to you and zoom in to a good length were you can see small ponds but can also explore the map in a large area. In the picture above, these were just randomly found using google earth. They are quite small, but actually quite large. With a bit more time you can find some tiny little spots as well. Also don't discount community built ponds like the one seen. If you live in a big city there will be quite a few of these. Yet, they are hardly ever fished, and at times the community can be very friendly if you are respectful. The biggest bass I've ever caught came out of a community lake we just walked onto. But yes, you can also get kicked out easily, although usually just a quick "Hey, you can't fish here".
Apps: These apps are best if you are living in rural areas, you found a pond but you're not quite sure if you should go on the land there. You have to be careful, some land is private property. Some is public, recreational and some can be someones hunting land. The last thing you want is to be shot by a couple guys thinking you were a bear or deer, plus you trespassed.
A great app for this is Onx, this app is marketed to hunters but would be great for pond hunting as well. It will give you details of the land you may be going on, is it private, public, hunting area, county owned and more. The app or website will teach you the different areas and what to know about them. Also can be used as an off-line gps tool to track your route in and out of the area so you don't get lost.
Golf Courses and Community Tracks: While this may not be the middle of nowhere hidden pond. They are hardly fished, a bit rebel to get on and can produce some huge bass. Obviously these are private property, but you may or may not have issues. At worst, you will probably be just told to leave. As previously said, the biggest bass I caught was in a community pond. Basically just a concrete pond for the homes that were on it. It was in Southern California and the bass was easily over 6 pounds. This was pretty big for being in the middle of the city.
Often best to hit these areas really early sunrise or late sunset. For golf courses make sure you aren't standing on the green or in peoples way, find a pond that's a bit off the beaten path or pick a day the golf course is closed or slow. For both of these, look presentable and not a threat. Like you're a friend of someone there and goofing around fishing. Be nice, quiet and use proper catch and release methods. This will go a long way and you can probably even go back every now and then.
Hiking: If you are up for adventure, get some hiking gear and head into places others normally can't. Most of your casuals will stay on the lakes and ponds that have roads to them. But places like Oregon are covered in tiny ponds near the larger lakes. You just have to hike a couple miles to get them. It's very important to know what you are doing. Be an experienced hiker to begin with and get your supplies in order before you leave. Survival kits, water, batteries, GPS and items like this should always be on you when you hike. You really never know, even the experienced hiker has things happen. That said, it's a great feeling when you and a buddy are at a lake with no old fishing line in the tree branches, it's perfectly quite without anyone in sight and the bass fishing is on fire.
Responsibility: If you just plan on leaving beer cans or fishing line all over the place this won't be for you. Other peoples land, community land or golf courses must be respected. If you plan on leaving trash on someones property and you go back, there is no telling what can happen. You never know who you are disrespecting and can also get the police called for trespassing if you are causing problems. Be Safe and respectful.
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