A pond can be considered a mini-version of a lake. Bigger isn’t always better when looking for a place to catch bass. Fishing a pond has its advantages over fishing a large reservoir or natural lake for bass. Bass are easier to find on a pond because you have less water to cover than a vast lake. You can also have just as much success fishing from the bank as fishing from a boat on a pond whereas a boat is frequently needed to catch big water bass. Ponds also receive less fishing pressure than the public reservoirs so pond bass are less spooky and lure shy.
You can rely on about the same lures your throw on larger bass fisheries but downsize your baits for the best results. Two factors to consider when selecting lures for pond fishing is depth of the pond and available cover. Most ponds are less than 20 feet deep, so you can eliminate the need for heavy metal baits, heavyweight jigs and any other lures you rely on for probing deep water. Many ponds also contain moss or some type of aquatic vegetation so you also need to pick lures that skim over the vegetation or can cut through the weeds to prevent from bogging down in the flora.
The Best Pond Baits For Catching Bass
Some of my favorite lures for catching pond bass year round include spinnerbaits, shallow-diving crankbaits, and bladed jigs like the Chatterbait, Finesse jigs with small plastic trailers, Texas-rigged plastic creature baits or plastic worms and of course, wacky-rigged Senkos.
1) Spinnerbaits or Bladed Jigs
Googan Squad Zinger
Spinnerbaits and bladed jigs are ideal for catching bass throughout the year in a pond because the lures can be fished at various speeds and depths. If the water is cold, you can slow down your retrieve to allow the lures to probe deeper and catch lethargic bass near the bottom. In warm and hot water, you can speed up the retrieve and run the lures higher in the water column to catch active bass. Blade baits in 1/4- and 3/8-ounce sizes are best for pond fishing.
2) Shallow Diving Crankbaits
Googan Squad Banger
Shallow-diving crankbaits work well in ponds because the lures run shallow enough to stay above submerged pond weeds. You can also run these crankbaits effectively in the shallow end of the pond where bass attack bluegill and minnows.
3) Finesse Jigs
Tight Rope Firework Super Jig
I favor finesse jigs on ponds containing wood cover such as laydown logs or stumps and sparse weeds. I pitch a 5/16-ounce jig when bass are in the shallow cover during the warmer months and switch to a 7/16-ounce jig for bass holding in deeper water down by the pond’s dam in the cold months.
4) Texas Rigged Soft Plastics
Karl’s Hustler Worm
Texas-rigged plastic creature baits and plastic worms are great for tricking bass hanging around the weeds. You can either punch the plastic baits through a grass mat with a heavy worm weight (3/4- or 1-ounce sinker) to catch bass under the mat or pitch the lures to the edges of the vegetation with a lighter weight (1/8- or 3/16-ounce) for bass roaming the weed edges.
5) Wacky Rigged Senkos
A wacky-rigged Senko is deadly for active and inactive pond bass. Try a weighted hook for a faster falling Senko to catch aggressive bass, but switch to a wacky-rigged Senko without any weight for the slow fall that will trigger strikes from sluggish pond bass in cold water.
6) Ned Rigs
Heavy Metal Tungsten Mushroom Head
The Ned Rig is another great option for pond bass because it closely imitates the swimming action of minnows, a forage base for bass throughout the year. The small jighead used for Ned Rigs produces a slow fall that allows you to keep the lure swimming above submerged vegetation or you can drag it slowly along the bottom in shallow or deep water depending on the time of year. The best soft plastic baits to attach to your Ned Rig jighead include 2-inch stickworms, craws and beavers.