Welcome to our Smallmouth Bass Fishing Home Page

Pound for pound, smallmouth bass are considered the strongest fighting freshwater fish by most anglers.  It is hard to disagree once you have spent some time fishing for smallmouth bass.  Whether you target monster smallmouth bass in the Great Lakes or in your favorite river, lake or stream, you will find a ton of fishing information in this section.

Smallmouth Bass Fishing Tips

Quick Links

Baits, Rigs & Techniques Tackle Recommendations
Best Fishing Rigs Fishing Line Recommendations
Best Fishing Techniques Fishing Rod & Reel Recommendations
Best Live Baits
Best Lures Time of Day & Throughout the Seasons
Catch More & Bigger Fish Seasons (Spring thru Winter)
Time of Day
Catch Big Smallmouth Bass
Catch Lots of Smallmouth Bass Water & Weather
Kitchen Table Cover & Structure
Types of Water
Eating Smallmouth Bass Water Depths


Smallmouth bass prefer colder water, but they can be found in a variety of different habitats as long as they have enough cool water and good oxygen levels.  You can find smallmouth bass in rivers, lakes, streams and even in some ponds up north.  Rocks are the preferred bottom for smallmouth bass, but you can also find them around wood, sand, weeds and out in the open water as they roam offshore waters in the summer thru winter months.

Learn more about the different types of cover and structure where you will find and catch more smallmouth bass.

Smallmouth Bass Love Rocks

If you can find rocks, there is a good chance you can find smallmouth bass.  While these fish will often be found around wood, weeds and sandy bottoms, rocks will usually be the best pattern for targeting smallmouth bass on most bodies of water.

Learn more about fishing the rocks for smallmouth bass.

Smallmouth Bass Love Crayfish

On most bodies of water, crayfish will make up a big portion of their diet.  Crayfish love the rocks, so plan on imitating a crayfish while fishing the rocks and you’ll catch some smallmouth bass.

Learn more about fishing with crayfish baits for smallmouth bass.

Smallmouth Bass Move a Lot

Once the spawn is over, plan on smallmouth bass moving quite a bit throughout the lake or river.  The bigger the body of water, the farther they may move from day to day.  Don’t be shocked if you find fish in one spot one day and then can’t find them the next day.  Smallmouth bass move a lot, so you may also have to move quite a bit to find schools of feeding bass each day you are on the water.

Smallmouth Bass Will Go Much Deeper Than Largemouth Bass

Smallmouth bass are very comfortable in deep water.  If you are more of a largemouth bass angler, you need to get used to fishing deeper when you are fishing for smallmouth bass.  In the summer and fall, it can be much deeper, especially on clear water lakes.

Learn more about finding smallmouth bass shallow, deep & everywhere in between.

Finesse Sized Baits Catch Lots of Smallmouth Bass

Smallmouth bass have smaller mouths, so don’t be shocked that a smaller 4 inch finesse worm can work for 10 to 12 inch bass as well as 4 to 5 pound smallmouth bass too.  While smallmouth bass will eat some big baits, most of the best smallmouth bass lures will feature a lot of finesse-sized baits.

Take a look at our Best Lures for Smallmouth Bass page to learn some great tips on how to use a variety of different lures to target smallmouth bass.

Some of the Best Smallmouth Bass Fishing is up North

There are so many more awesome smallmouth bass fishing destinations as you head further up north.  From the upper midwest to Canada, this is where you want to look if you’re looking for a lot of awesome smallmouth bass fishing destinations.  You can also find some great smallmouth bass fishing in the southern United States, but you will not find nearly as many awesome destinations for smallmouths when compared to up north.

Best Smallmouth Bass Fishing Destinations

Best Baits for Smallmouth Bass

Soft Baits

Hard Baits

Live Baits

Best Smallmouth Bass Fishing Rigs

While many of the traditional bass fishing rigs will work great for smallmouth bass too, most smallmouth bass anglers will spend a lot more time using a variety of rigs such as the tube jig, drop shot rig and Ned rig.

Best Smallmouth Bass Fishing Rigs

Best Smallmouth Bass Fishing Techniques

Whether you use the typical power fishing techniques that are used by many largemouth bass anglers or the many different finesse techniques that some of the smallmouth bass anglers employ, there are plenty of techniques in this section to help you learn more and catch more smallmouth bass.

Best Fishing Techniques for Smallmouth Bass

Catch Big Smallmouth Bass

Learn some great tips for catching big smallmouth bass in this section.

Catch Big Smallmouth Bass

Catch Lots of Smallmouth Bass

There are many places that give anglers some great options to catch smallmouth bass in bunches.  While there are many destinations that give anglers the chance to catch 30, 50 or even 100 fish in a day, there are definitely some better techniques to help you put more fish in the boat.

Learn some of the best techniques for catching lots of smallmouth bass.

Fishing Line Recommendations

Fishing line can vary depending on if you are fishing clear water, murky water, rivers or lakes, so make sure to take a look at our fishing line recommendations for smallmouth bass page to learn more.

Fishing Rod & Reel Recommendations

Whether you want to finesse it up with light gear while targeting smallmouth bass in clear water or go much heavier in murky waters lakes and rivers, this section can help learn more about the fishing rods & reels you can use to put more bass in the boat.


As the seasons change, smallmouth bass move from deep water to shallow and then back deep again.  They can be found as shallow as just a couple of feet of water and down 30 to 40 feet suspended out over 100 feet of water.  Smallmouth bass can be tricky to pattern for many anglers, so you’re going to want to learn more about their seasonal migrations if you’re going to consistently have success putting them in the boat.

Learn about Smallmouth Bass Fishing Through the Different Seasons

Time of Day

Smallmouth bass will usually feed throughout the day, which makes them a favorite for most anglers that fish up north.  When the walleye bite shuts down, the smallmouth bass will usually be cooperative to save the day from late morning through the afternoon.

Learn how the Time of Day Affects Smallmouth Bass Fishing

Types of Water

While it is very common to find so many awesome smallmouth bass destinations with very clear water, you can find smallmouth bass in many types of waters from small streams to huge lakes to super clear waters and extremely murky water.

Learn about catching Smallmouth Bass in the Different Types of Water

Water Depths

Finding smallmouth bass can be the hardest part of the equation most of the time.

Learn how to catch Smallmouth Bass through the Different Water Columns


Weather plays a role with smallmouth bass just like it does with other fish.  Learn how smallmouth bass react to the sun, clouds, wind, rain and other weather variables so you can put more fish in the boat.

How Weather Affects Smallmouth Bass Fishing