“If you want to catch a giant bass on Lake D’Arbonne, now is the time to do it,” according to Todd Risinger.

Risinger isn’t bashful about that prediction, and he even goes further.

“If you fish two or three days before and after the full moon, that’s even going to improve your odds,” said the veteran fisherman who has regular success on the 15,000-acre lake.

The best thing about this time of the year isn’t just the chance to catch big bass: It’s a time when you can catch them in lots of different ways.

“First, D’Arbonne is full of cypress trees and the big bass love to spawn around the cypress trees,” Risinger said. “You can find them from one end of the lake to the other.

“Up both of the creeks, there are hundreds of trees. The best way to work them is to throw a big creature bait right up next to the tree and fish it extremely slowly. In fact, you want to fish a lure that will even fall really slow. That often helps trigger a strike.”

His favorite lures are lizards, Brush Hawgs, Rage Craws and Lake Fork Ring Frys with no weight at all.

He said to just go with the colors you have confidence in and match them to the water color, which varies widely this time of the year.

His second stop is anywhere there are lily pads, or where there were lily pads, that is.

“This time of year, there are no pads, but there a fields of lily pad stems,” Risinger said. “These are great for spawning bass. It is great structure, and the bottom is right for spawning. Usually the water around these areas is dingy and they get hit pretty hard, so you want to use a lure like a ChatterBait or big spinnerbait that moves some water so the fish can find it.”

The third top area this month is around the bank where the fish are moving up to spawn. Concentrate from 3 feet of water up to as shallow as a foot.

Again, use a bait that moves a lot of water. And watch your line. More times than not, big females will just move the bait out of the nest; if you aren’t quick, you’ll miss them.

And sometimes you might set the hook six or seven times with no luck. Keep targeting the bass. You’ll make her mad and agitate her into hitting, he said. And there’s nothing like catching a “mad” lunker bass to make a bass fisherman happy.