Winter fishing in the northern states mostly consist of ice fishing for perch, crappie, bluegill, walleye and northern pike. For bass anglers in the southern states, there is still open water for them to target largemouth bass and smallmouth bass. During these cold months, you're going to want to target these fish in deeper water than you would be fishing in the spring and fall.
On deeper lakes, you might be fishing 18 to 30 feet of water for largemouth bass and 20 to 50 feet of water for smallmouth bass. It might be a little tougher to fish this deep, but once you find the fish, you can have a lot of success. If you are afraid of deep water fishing, you're missing out.
With a good fish finder, you can usually spot schools of bait fish to go along with schools of bass. You will usually find larger schools of smallmouth bass than largemouth bass, but there are times when you can catch 10 or more largemouth bass from one spot. Basically, find the bait fish and you will have a good chance of finding bass.
If you can find some fish on the fish finder, try using some jigging spoons, plastic worms, jigs and live bait. Some good live baits are nightcrawlers, fathead minnows, shiners and creek chubs. For smallmouth bass, a live perch is a deadly bait during these cold water periods. Just make sure to check your state's regulations because it may not be legal to use perch as bait.
Changes in air temperature can play a big role in their feeding habits. If you get a warm trend for a couple of days, the bite should be better. During some warm trends, you will see largemouth bass move shallow, especially in areas that have some type of weeds as cover. A severe cold front can completely shut the bass down.
Source by Kevin Sewell