Fishing Report: Where to Catch Spawning Bass in the West

Like deer hunters waiting for the best days of the rut, bass anglers around the country look forward to bass spawning season and a chance to catch the biggest largemouths of the year.

Here are our picks for the West:

April 1-7
Our Pick: California Delta
Hot Pattern: The spawn is starting and should last through the next full moon. Fish the Widows, Coney Island, and St. Francis areas for spawners. The best bet is to fish a black/blue jig.

April 8-14
Our Pick: Lake Havasu, AZ/CA (pictured above)
Hot Pattern: Catch pre-­spawners on the outside edge of tules (bulrushes).

April 15-21
Our Pick: Castaic Lake, CA
Hot Pattern: Cast jerkbaits to primary and secondary points and inside the coves.

April 22-28
Our Pick: Roosevelt Lake, AZ
Hot Pattern: Fish shallow banks with stickworms, topwater poppers, and walking baits. Spawners will be located at the bases of brush and trees.

April 29-May 5
Our Pick: Clear Lake, CA
Hot Pattern: Fish the mouths of the creeks with spinnerbaits, swimbaits, or jerkbaits for pre-spawners. Long casts with weightless stickworms will draw bites.

May 6-12
Our Pick: Tenmile Lake, OR
Hot Pattern: Pitch or cast jigs with craw trailers to willow trees, docks, and laydowns in the backs of coves. Black and Coleman creeks are consistent producers.

May 13-19
Our Pick: Lake Mead, NV
Hot Pattern: Pitch soft-­plastic creatures to spawning bass in the backs of long, flat coves. Catch pre-spawners with spinnerbaits and drop-shots on main lake points.

May 20-26
Our Pick: Potholes Reservoir, WA
Hot Pattern: Fish squarebills and jigs to the underwater dunes at the north end.

May 27-June 2
Our Pick: Columbia River impoundments, OR/WA
Hot Pattern: Pitch jigs and Sweet Beaver-type soft-plastics to visible beds and holes in the grass. Work the edges of the weeds.

June 3-9
Our Pick: Banks Lake, WA
Hot Pattern: Bass will spawn on sand banks with rocks and boulders in backwater bays, on roadbeds, and at the edge of tules; slow-swim a jig with a grub trailer.