On any given lake, there are plenty of ideal spots where an angler can find fish. One oft-overlooked spot that can yield great results are transition zones. What are transition zones, though, and why are they such great places to fish? Today we’ll answer these questions and more with an in-depth look at transition zones.
Simply put, transition zones exist where two different types of structure butt up against each other—either different varieties of the same structure, or two completely different types. Where it’s where rock and weeds meet, or coontail and lily pads, the key is finding two types of structure that transition into each other.
Transition zones are ideal for a variety of reasons. They offer varying forms of cover and concealment and also provide a larger range of prey to feed on, as different forms of structure will support various baitfish, crustaceans and plankton. Furthermore, they offer varying degrees of temperature change, especially where thick vegetation is present.
Depending on the type of lake you fish, finding transition zones can be as easy as scanning the water from the deck of your boat. If the water is stained or deep, then it’s best to use your electronics. Once you find the zones, mark it with your GPS, which will allow you to easily find and fish it throughout the season.
When fishing transition zones, I’d work horizontal running baits to cover both zones effectively. For instance, toss a spinnerbait over weeds and rocks to entice largemouth. Dissecting the point where two structures meet with a horizontal presentation allows you to cover the location efficiently.
Anglers often target specific types of cover and structure, but the transition zones—where two structure/cover types meet—can be just as rewarding. Find these spots and be sure to mark them down for future trips to the lake; I promise you’ll be glad you did!