Fall pushes baitfish and bass alike up creek arms of reservoirs, and the bass tend to feed well on crankbaits, swimbaits, spinnerbatits and more. The bass’ metabolism remains high, and they are feeding heavily in preparation for hard times. All is well.

Before long, though, fall will have given way to winter and the action prompted by the same casting presentations will have waned. That doesn’t mean you can’t still find good fishing. It just means you have to change strategies.

Falling water temperatures cause baitfish and bass to stack up in deep holes, often along bends in creek or river channels, and makes the bass less inclined to chase. The bad part about the fish piling up is that you won’t find them in a lot of places where they might be at other times. The good part is that where you find one, you often find several more.

Among the best ways to catch winter bass when they stack up in holes is to vertical jig a C.C. Spoon, usually working it very close the bottom so that it makes fresh contact on every drop. Work it by snapping the rod tip up sharply and then following it back down with the rod.

The first step is to look at several creek bends holes with your graph, looking for concentrations of shad and ideally for fish near the bottom that you believe are bass. The fish might be in the deep part of the hole, right above the main drop, or on the slope in between, so you may have to do some searching. The best holes often are toward the lower end of a major creek. During the coldest part of winter, holes that are protected from prevailing winds by high banks tend to produce extra well.

Once you find something interesting, toss out a marker buoy for reference, drop your spoon to the bottom and start jigging. Use your trolling motor to work the area slowly and keep an eye on your electronics so you know your depth and where you are on the structure when you do catch fish.

A ¾-ounce Silver C.C. Spoon generally works best for vertical jigging for bass. Use 14- to 17-pound test and a medium heavy rod to give you good control of the lure. When a fish hits, set the hook with a solid upward snap.

One warning: Don’t use this approach if you only like catching black bass. White bass, catfish, crappie and stripers are just a few of the species that cannot resist a C.C. Spoon.