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Top 5 best Washington bass fishing tips for beginners

By Danny Garrett (Warmwater Fisheries Biologist)

1. As a beginner, focus on a couple techniques that are proven in Washington:

- Stick Worms rigged with an offset worm hook (rigged weightless on sunny, calm days, use sliding bullet weight on windy days)

- Small 3–4” finesse worm, rigged on a drop shot hook tied 8–12 inches above a drop shot weight (use the lightest weight you can, depending on wind and depth)

2. During the summer, fish topwater baits (such as frogs, buzzbaits, poppers, and torpedo lures) during the EARLY morning and LATE evening hours. Bass are very active in the shallows during low-light periods.

3. Learn to cast with a casting reel (aka baitcaster) by practicing in an open space with no hooks (Casting Reels allow anglers to make precise casts around cover, which is oftentimes required to get big bass to bite)

4. Don’t be afraid of hanging your lure on cover and structure. Often times, beginners actively avoid making contact with the bottom or existing cover like vegetation, logs, and rocks. Bass are triggered to strike when your lure glances off a rock or log, or is pulled from the weeds.

5. Make friends with local bass anglers or join a local bass club. Most experienced bass anglers are eager to share tips and tricks with a novice angler.

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The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is dedicated to preserving, protecting and perpetuating the state’s fish and wildlife resources.

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