Targeting Bass on Riprap

Riprap is easily one of the most identifiable and commonly fished areas of any given lake.  It’s a structure that will hold bass year round on any type of lake.  If there is riprap there, fish it.  There will be bass there at some point.


Why is it called riprap?  Why not just rock?  I don’t know, but I will conform with the wording. By definition, riprap is a man-made structure.  Consisting of large chunks of rocks or limestone placed along the shore to prevent erosion.  You will find it around bridges, faces of dams, entrances to marinas or harbors, and of course, private shorelines.

Not all riprap banks are created equally.  Normally, banks that taper into a little deeper water can pay off pretty much year round.  Bass will locate here year round because of the depth options they have available to them.  This means they can move shallow to warm themselves or eat.  Or they can escape a little deeper, if necessary, to protect themselves from weather or other critters.

Shallow and gradually sloping banks can be outstanding during early spring and late fall.  Every angler knows that rocks hold heat and maintains that heat well.  During these times of the year, forage and bass thinking about spawning can feed throughout the day.

Bass will locate on riprap shallow during the summertime, but usually on the steeper banks.  They will move shallow to feed on the crawfish and minnows in the early morning hours.  Then they retreat back to deeper water as they see fit for the better part of the day.


Pinpoint locations on riprap:
1. Wood cover and riprap are a gold mine.  Fish it hard and take your time here.
2. Underwater points.  Each section of riprap will have the underwater points that  serve as staging areas for bass.  Use your electronics or a search lure to locate  these hot spots.
3. Where the rock ends is also an excellent place for bass to just sit and rest.  They  move up to feed from these areas.
4. A creek channel swinging near the riprap should be fished harder than any other  area near riprap.  The entire channel is always a great place to fish.

Lures to use:
1. Crankbaits-crawfish colors during the spring and shad patterns during summer.    Crankbaits allow you to fish a variety of depths quickly and thoroughly.
2. Jerkbaits fished parallel to the riprap are a good choice when the water  temperature is 50 to 60 degrees.
3. Soft plastics work well.  Worms, grubs, crawfish-styled baits and texas-rigged  baits allow you to probe the area when you have located the proper depth of bass.
4. When the water is a little dirty and bass are shallow, jigs are the way to go.   Jigs catch big fish and big fish go to riprap.

Hopefully these few tips on location and lures will help you out during you days of fishing.

Until next time, Tight Lines.


Keith Redd (reddman)

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