Dock Fishing Tips for Spring and Summer

Docks in general are a great bass habitat. Boat houses are also great cover for bass as well. Unfortunately, since docks and boat houses attract lots of bass, everyone fishes them. This could cause the bass to eventually stop biting. Here are some dock fishing tips to help you catch more bass:

Watch the water levels:

In the spring, when the water levels are high, bass tend to be near the shoreline, and in very shallow water. Target walkways and the shoreline. The water level may prevent you from skipping a lure underneath the dock. If that is true, fish as close as you can to the docks and use baits that create a lot of noise and attract a lot of attention.

When water levels are low, bass will move to nearby cover away from the shoreline. You can try to fish underneath the docks with a skipping technique, but the bass will most likely have moved on.

In the summer, bass like to hang around docks in deep water, creek channel drops, and planted brush.

If you are fishing clear water, keep your distance from the docks. In muddy water, distance does not play much of a factor. Spinnerbaits, poppers, buzzbaits, chatterbaits, crankbaits, jigs are all great lures to use.

Fish the Right Docks:

Avoid metal docks, concentrate on natural wooden docks. If you have not perfected your cast, do not fish docks with boats on them as a common courtesy. Boat owners do not want their boat to get scratched or damaged. Avoid docks if there are people standing on them as this is a safety hazard. The noise of people walking most likely scared the fish away anyway. Practice your sidearm skipping cast technique before fishing docks.

Other Tips:

  • Docks in spawning flats are great for spring.
  • Docks in deeper water are efficient for summer.
  • Fish the shadow sides of the dock first.
  • Fish close to the dock legs.

Have any other tips? We invite you to share your advice & experiences by commenting below!


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  1. Sarah Smith says:

    I live by a lake and want to go fishing on it sometime. Thanks for the advice about how bass like to hang around in the shallow water in the spring and under a dock in summer. I’ll have to see about getting a dock built on the lake in front of my house to make boating and fishing easier.

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