Being able to catch fish behind someone is becoming more and more necessary with the rise in popularity of bass fishing. Whether fishing from the back of the boat, fishing behind another boat, fishing a popular pond or even trying to recycle water you’ve already fished through yourself, learning to catch fish behind someone is critical. So today, we’re going to talk through a few ways to do just that.
One of the most obvious moves when trying to catch fish behind someone is to downsize your bait selection to a finesse technique. Using something like a dropshot, Ned rig, shakyhead or wacky rig increases the odds of you tricking a bass that might be a little pickier due to high pressure.
This works well anytime the bass in a particular fishery are seeing a lot of baits. The more natural, finesse baits require less aggression from a bass and there’s less of a risk to their well being to bite a worm as opposed to a buzzbait, for example. So offering up some of these easier meals is a great way to get bit.
Use a complimentary bait
If you’re fishing behind someone, it’s a good idea to go with a bait that’s complimentary to the one the other person is using. For instance, if the guy in front of you is reeling a toad, you’d be wise to fish a swimjig. If he’s throwing a buzzbait, a spinnerbait would work well behind him. Or fish a squarebill behind a spinnerbait for another example.
Choosing a bait that’s slightly less aggressive than the one the other angler is using gives you a great chance to catch a fish behind him. A fish may run right up behind a buzzbait, but not be quite willing to commit to it. Or perhaps the buzzbait simply alerted the fish to something in the area, but by the time the bass made it to where the buzzbait was, the lure was gone. Then your spinnerbait slides through and the bass crushes it.
In the boat with someone
If you’re in the back of someone’s boat fishing as a co-angler or perhaps even fishing a team tournament together, there are again several things you can do to increase your chances of getting bit. We already talked about using a complimentary bait, which works well in this scenario or even if you’re recycling water and fishing behind yourself.
But if you’re in the boat with someone, watching where they cast and keeping an eye on the back graph are both great ways to increase your odds. Watching where they cast will help you know where to throw a complimentary bait, but it will also help you know which targets they may have missed, so you can throw to those too.
And often times, the boater will leave his back graph at the console turned on. The transducer for this graph is typically mounted near the outboard. So, if you keep something like a dropshot handy and see a fish on the back graph, you can drop your bait right behind the boat and have a good chance of catching that fish. Whereas if you were just casting around and weren’t watching the graph, you’d have never known that fish was there.
Adjusting your bait selection and paying close attention to the little details can really increase your productivity when fishing behind someone. Try the obvious finessier approaches, but don’t be scared to power fish behind someone as well if you can find a complimentary bait to what they’re throwing.
And then be sure to watch out for any little indicators of where you might have an increased opportunity of getting bit. Watch the back graph, watch where they’re throwing (or more importantly not throwing), watch for little ripples on the water or blades of grass to move that might indicate baitfish along the surface or a bass repositioning.
Hopefully paying attention to these little details and making smart choices with your bait selection will increase your productivity the next time you find yourself trying to catch fish behind someone.