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Top Bass (Smallmouth) Fishing Destinations

Bass (Smallmouth) (Micropterus dolomieu)

Bass (Smallmouth)

Bass (Smallmouth)

  • Size 1 - 4 lbs
  • Food Value Excellent
  • Game Qualities Good
  • Habitats Lake, River

An incredible fighter, the Smallmouth Bass was described as "ounce for ounce and pound for pound the gamest fish that swims" in James Hensall's Book of the Black Bass (1881). Combine that with excellent eating, and this is a fish that you can't refuse.

How Big?

Most Smallmouth Bass weigh in between one to two pounds, with prize fish coming in at four pounds. It is very rare to find a Smallmouth weighing over ten pounds.

Where and When

Smallmouth Bass are indigenous to the Great Lakes and south Quebec, down to the mid-south. A popular game fish that thrives on lower temperatures than the Largemouth Bass, they have been widely introduced to most states in the USA, with notable exceptions being Florida, Alaska, and Louisiana.  

These fish are usually found in rocky areas of lakes or in fast-flowing streams, and tend to prefer to stick to cooler waters.

How to Catch a Smallmouth Bass

An enjoyable fish to target on light tackle, the Smallmouth Bass gives great sport to anglers using spinning, bait casting, or fly fishing gear. Despite its small size, this fish is very fast, agile, and a great jumper, making it a very desirable target. 

Smallmouth Bass Lures:

Jigs are the most popular type of lure to use - bouncing them along the bottom of the river, stream, or lake in imitation of a crayfish will usually get a very positive response. Crankbaits and spinners are also popular, and surface lures can work well in shallower waters. 

Smallmouth Bass Bait:

The best bait for Smallmouth Bass is crawfish, hellgrammites, nightcrawlers, small fish. 

Good to Eat?

These are some of the best panfish you can get. With a soft, white flesh, they are regularly caught to eat, although catch and release is getting increasingly common.

Fish Species Similar to Bass (Smallmouth)

Bass (Largemouth)

Bass (Largemouth)





Bass (Spotted)

Bass (Spotted)

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