With today’s advanced sonar units boasting the ability to see detailed images of not only what’s under the boat but also the bottom, it’s pretty easy to locate the sweet spots for bass on a ledge.
Find a nice little nook or a hefty brush pile, and you have your target for casting and winding those crankbaits, spinnerbaits and jigs.
But what do you do when your hot bite suddenly cools? Unless you just enjoy looking for new spots, you should pull directly over the ledge and take a good look at your targeted spot. Often, the fish are still there; they just got tired of seeing the same types of presentations.
This is where your drop-shot can really shine. Fish move up on the ledge to feed, so it’s not surprising to smoke a bunch of them on reaction baits. However, they will wise up eventually, so the savvy anglers must shift gears to pick off a few more.
As long as the fish remain on the ledge, it’s a safe bet that they’re still in the food mood — so it’s just a matter of keeping an easy meal available to them.
Few rigs can achieve this level of consistent vulnerability like a drop-shot. The fish might scatter when too many crankbaits buzz past them, and they might get tired of watching a buddy yanked to topside after tipping down on that football head. But a slender worm or small shad figure that just sits there wiggling in the current — now that’s just too much to resist.
A couple of considerations:
- Take a good look at the spot you’ll drop on, and if there’s brush, timber or anything else that can snag an exposed drop-shot hook, Texas-rig your bait.
- If fish are suspending off the ledge, try a longer leader that keeps the bait at the fish’s eye level.
- Use a weight sufficient for the depth and current of the spot you’re fishing.