Pond Fishing Fundamentals
Many of us are fortunate to have a local pond not too far from home. These small bodies of water are the perfect way to get your fishing fix without burning through the usual gas and tackle expenses. Local ponds are great for honing in your skills and most will produce some quality fish!
Since it’s quick and easy to make your way around most ponds, you can really take your time and work each spot carefully, picking apart every level of the water column if needed. This means you can bring an array of baits to play with, helping you either learn new skills or improve the basics.
Here’s our personal guide for bank-bashing local honey holes.
Keep It Simple
It’s just a pond! Keep your arsenal simple since you’ll have to lug it all around on foot anyways. The lighter the load, the more you can maneuver around and focus on fishing. Don’t be afraid to bring a few rods, however, since it’s the perfect time to practice whatever you want as mentioned before. With that in mind, bring only what you know you’ll need for the day and your body will thank you.
Downsize If Needed
It’s nice to downsize your baits when pond fishing, but keep in mind this isn’t always the case. For most of my weighted lures such as a swim jig or football head jig, I’ll drop down from a ½ oz. to ⅜ oz. for a slightly smaller profile, making it easier to drag around as well. Same goes for any spinnerbait, topwater, crankbaits and other hard baits.
Lures aren’t the only things you should downsize. Pond bass can get pretty finicky sometimes so dropping your line down a couple weights can make a big difference. For instance, if you usually fish a drop shot with 8-10lb, give 6lb a try if the fish are being difficult.
You don’t need to bring your 8’ rods out to a pond unless you’re fishing heavy swimbaits. Usually any pole in the 6-7’ range will make your life a lot easier, especially if there are trees overhead or bushes behind you.
What Should You Throw?
It really depends on what structure your pond offers. Take a look around and pay attention to what’s against the bank or within casting distance. Is there a submerged tree out in the middle? A certain rockpile, ledge, etc.? The thickness of structure will definitely determine what you will throw.
If there are tule patches, submerged grass, timber and other snaggy obstacles, a Senko (or any stickbait) is always a great choice. Texas Rig your Senko weightless and you’ll be able to cover multiple levels of the water column snag-free. If your pond is deeper you can always peg a bullet weight in the front for a faster fall rate.
Can’t go wrong with this anywhere. Drop-shotting a worm or creature bait is always a staple in pond fishing. Drag your rig through rocky bottom or next to vegetation and you’re sure to nail a couple fish. If the structure is thicker use a weedless hook like the Roboworm Rebarb hooks and you’re good to go.
This has become one of our pond fishing favorites over the years. We’ll usually fish a swim jig through thick grass and other vegetation as the weed guard helps your bait emerge snag-free. Since most ponds aren’t too deep, use a ⅜ ounce instead of a ½ ounce so you can work the bait slower without it plummeting to the bottom.
Football Head Jig
This is perfect for any pond with a rocky bottom. Once again we like to downsize to a ⅜ or even smaller at times, making for a nice compact package. Crawl your jig over rock structure or through timber and you’ll usually pick out the bigger fish in the pond compared to dragging a drop shot around.
Remember that these tips won’t work for every pond you fish, but we can guarantee they’ll work for most. Always change up your baits if the pond is pressured by many anglers and you’ll notice more successful trips. Time to go out there and claim your local honey hole! Let us know if you have further questions or comments down in the comments section below. Tight lines.