Bass Fishing 101 Essential Guide for Beginners

Bass fishing is exciting and popular for the right reasons.  It can be a complicated sport for beginners, but it learning it does not have to be. Think of the appetite-whetting meal you get or the bragging rights you take home when you win the fishing competition. If you have been sitting on the bleachers watching the fun, you might want to step into the waters to experience it.

 No, no one is born an expert in this game; you only need to learn and practice a few tips. Who knows, with these bass fishing 101 essential guides for beginners, you could strike the charm box.

You probably have your adrenaline pumping now. It is for the right reasons. So get yourself a fishing license to avoid spending the time you would be fishing in jail.

Bass fishing

Ready? Keep this in mind, if you want to learn how to swim, you start with the shallow waters, then go deeper as you get polished.  It is the same principle with bass fishing.

In this article, I will cover some of the essential fishing tips so you can start bass fishing right away. You can also take advantage of our free ecourse to teach you all the tools and techniques to catch bass like a pro. Click here to get access.

What equipment do I need for bass fishing?

What kind of lures do you use for bass fishing?

What length rod is best for bass fishing?

How do you know where to fish for bass?

The Casting Process

Frequently Asked Questions

Any bass fishing for beginners that does not start with baby steps is not worth your time; ditch it. It would be best if you began to small then go big. Otherwise, you might be fished instead. Do you know how big largemouth bass are? Well, just kidding. Here we go:

What equipment do I need for bass fishing?

Every winning battle has weapons. How good an angler you are is determined by whether or not your fishing tools are functional.

The Reel And The Rod

This is a must-have if you want to master the fishing sport. When going out to buy, you will need to consider a medium action rod that will give you flexibility and sensitivity. A medium action will also sustain the weight of heavy fish like largemouth bass, which can weigh around 10 pounds.  Just test it to make sure it is comfortable in your hand.

Your rod’s length will depend on where you will be fishing, but a 7 feet rod will do a perfect size for beginners. A baitcasting reel is harder to use for a beginner, but a spinning reel will give you an easier time. You can graduate to others as you master the game. There is no harm in asking questions; that is what dealers are for. Only go home with the tool once you are confident it will satisfy your need.

For more details about what is “action” and the perfect rod size for a beginner, click here to read this article:  Amazing Tips On How To Choose The Best Fishing Poles

I have also explained the difference between a baitcasting reel and a spinning reel, which you can read: Bait Caster Reel Vs. Spinning Reels

The line

Depending on the reel and rod you have chosen, the line must match it. There are three basic types on the market monofilament, Fluorocarbon, and braided. The best one will depend on where you plan to fish and the size of your target fish.

Fishing lines characteristics

Monofilament Line:

For short, mono is the widely used type of line because of the availability; they are the cheapest and have a larger diameter. It stretches more than Fluorocarbon but less and less visible than the braided line. Mono is the preferred line to use for bass and panfish with a wacky worm, plastic lures, and Texas rigs because they will sink slowly into the water. 

Fluorocarbon Line:

 Fluoro is also called thinner in diameter, has low visibility, stretches a little more than braid, and accommodates many fishing techniques. It is the line mostly used by bass fishermen.

Braided Line:

 They are the strongest, and they barely stretch. They are unfortunately not transparent because they are made of woven fiber.

Keep this in mind though, monofilament and braid line float and is perfect for top water baits, while fluorocarbon sinks and is ideal for reaction baits presentations

What kind of lures do you use for bass fishing?

Now let’s talk about the baits or lures. To get a fish to bite, you need a lure that will trigger its sense of sight, smell, and hearing to catch them. Otherwise, you might go back home with a story. Think of colorful crankbaits, plastic worms, jigs, a few frogs, and spinnerbaits.

For smallmouth bass, you might consider tube bait and lipless crankbait. Smallmouth bass usually stays in 15-40 feet deep. The lipless crankbait not only sinks about 1 ft per second but the rattling it will draw the bass’ attention wherever they are.

The tube bait is well known for its effectiveness in catching smallmouth bass. It is designed to copy the behavior of gobies and crustaceans; if you are going to fish in an area with rocky or muddy bottoms like rivers and ponds, that is the lure to use.

Finess worm is another lure that very popular with bass anglers when the bites get tough. It is usually used in Texas rig setup. A 6-7″ size in Green Pumpkin color and you are guaranteed to get your first fish.

Since largemouth bass loves shallow and weedy areas, a topwater lure will be perfect. If you are to fish in a lake or pond, use a  ¼ oz shad color square bill crankbait.

Now that you have the tools ready, you already have half of the bass fishing 101 essential guides for beginners. However, having them without knowing how to use them is just like owning a car that you can’t drive. You need to understand how to use them.

What length rod is best for bass fishing?

For a beginner, a 7′ is ideal to start; however, the fishing technique you will use can affect the length as well, and I will explain that below. A 7′ rod length will allow you to cast farther, and it won’t be too difficult to manage. Lately, more anglers are moving to a size 8 because it is easier to handle more lines and make a quieter presentation.

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The Casting Process

Bass can be found in any water depth, so get the skill right, and you will catch a lot of bass. It is what separates wannabes from pros. The best defense here is practice and more practice. Once you have your rod and bait set, don’t scare the fish away by doing it the wrong way.

Let’s talk about some casting techniques for beginners and when to use them. If you are fishing in a covered area in shallow water, you need to use the Flipping and pitching casting techniques


Pitching is the easiest fishing technique to learn. For this technique, the ideal rod size is 6’8″ to 7’3″. The shorter length helps with the underhand part of this technique. This technique is useful if you are fishing from the bank or a boat allows you to make a quiet presentation to your specific target area.

  • To start, you use your non-dominant hand to pull out about 2 feet of line off the reel so the lure can be even with the reel
  • Hold the lure with your free hand around waist level
  • Apply pressure on the spool with your thumb
  • Lower the tip of the rod toward the water
  • In a quick motion, swing the rod tip forward while at the same time letting go of the lure.
  • Lift the tip of your rod to allow the lure to a pendulum
  • As the lure is falling, you remove your thumb from the spool, and the lure will pull line off the spool
  • stop the spool with your thumb right before your lure hits the water to have a smooth entry
  • Let the lure slip into  the water quietly and then reel in and repeat

It might be hard at the beginning, but with more practice, it will get easier.


The flipping technique is more challenging but more accurate.  It is better to use a long rod like 7’6″ -8′ to have more lines to play with and cover more water.  This technique is designed for a thick cover that is 10 to 20 feet away. Try it a few times, and you will get the flow. It even lures shy bass out of their hiding places.

  • To start, you use your non-dominant hand to pull an arm’s length of line off the reel
  • Hold the rod with your dominant hand
  • Grab the line above the reel and then raise the rod as you swing it close to your body
  • Use your free hand to feed the line till you get your desired location
  • Lower the top of the rod and release the line, so it falls smoothly on top of your target.
  • Use your free hand to pull the line out while lifting the tip of your rod.
  • Repeat the same step

How do you know where to fish for bass?

Equipment? Check. Skill? Check. Now all that is important, but only if you know where to get the bass fish. You cannot try to find gold in an oil mine. So an appropriate location is critical.  You can go online to find the perfect places in your area, but I will give you an idea.

The excellent news about bass fish is that they are many and are found almost everywhere. Think of lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams. If you get a license, you can try private ponds and lakes. Once you are there, play fish and try to figure out where you would hide.

Bass are predator fish, so they like to hide a lot, so think of obstacles in the water. It can be covers such as rocks, grass beds, timber, Lili pads, docks, and boat. It can also be structured like drop-offs, creek channels, humps, and holes. If you are not successful, keep looking until you find them.

Sometimes fishing is a game of luck. Just make sure you understand that seasons change the fish’s behavior. For example, bass are more active during warm weather and less active during cold weather. Talk to another angler on up to date tips.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to catch bass?

Here are a few things you can do to catch more bass

  • Fish were you see covers or structures and toward the shoreline
  • In the Spring, fish in shallow water as it is spawning season.
  • Pick a bait or lure that resembles what the bass are feeding on in your area. For example, if you near the shoreline and see many frogs, that is a good indication that a frog lure will help you get bites.
  • Bass are attracted to a red color as they see it as an injured bait so use red color lures.  

How do I start bass fishing?

It would help if you found out what water body you have in your area, pond, lake, and river.

Take a course or watch Youtube videos on how to fish for bass.

Don’t spend a lot of money on buying expensive gear. A decent combo rod will do the trick. Same thing with line and lures as you will most likely break a lot of lines and lose a few lures as you learn. It can be quite expensive in the long run.  

I have a FREE e-course that will teach you what you need to start fishing for bass, the techniques used by professional anglers, and the tools you need to get started.

Final Thoughts

Have you have seen it is not difficult to start bass fishing with the right tips. I’ll summarize them for you:

  • Have the right fishing gear. A 7′ rod size with medium action is excellent for a beginner
  • To know what fishing line to use according to the condition and where you are fishing. The Mono line is widely used and very cheap.
  • Learn how to cast. Pitching and Flipping are necessary to learn, especially if you are fishing in a covered area or around structures.
  • Know the kind of lure to use. Lipless Crankbait, tube bait, and finesse worm are your best friend if were to catch more bass.

Bass fishing is fascinating, and you should not give up without trying. With these tips, you can start practicing right away. It gets easier and more fun with time. Take the first step and head out to fish. You already know the basics. Good luck.

Are you looking for a fantastic guide on bass fishing that is simplified and clear enough to help you start bass fishing? To help you get started, I’m offering you a five-day ecourse for free that will teach you what you need to know to start bass fishing.

In this ecourse, you will learn about the tools of the trade, techniques to bass fishing like a pro, and secrets to help you catch your biggest bass. Click here to have access to “The Definitive Guide To Tackle Bass Fishing.” Click Here to get access

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