I found some smallmouth in the rocks with a white chatterbait after we tried all the usual flavors. Conditions seemed perfect: cloudy, warm water, good water visibility with some stain.
Mike hit this 19" in a featureless area of riffle on a spinnerbait:
He continued to pick up decent 13-15" SMB and I mostly 10-11" dinks until I nailed this nice 18" smallie above a riffle. Went airborne a bunch.
The chatter/spinnerbait bite seemed to die around midday. I threw a tube in current and got thumped by a huge smallmouth, fought it ashore where I had it laying on it's side, beaten in the shallows. Then it did one of those martial arts moves where the guy jumps back up from laying down and swam through my hands. It was huge in the 21-22" range I'd guess. Sadly, no pic. Then it rained for a while.
We hit a large wide pool with a limestone bedrock bottom. Along the slow inside bend we picked active fish chasing our baits in a post spawn hunger. Bam, 18.5" for me:
Then Mike nailed an 18" a cast or two later.
I got this 17"er. It was followed in by a slightly larger fish.
We thought we had found a pattern, so kept wading well beyond what was sane. We must have walked close to 8 miles round trip. Picked up a few more fish here and there, but couldn't locate more hawgs in the larger pools.
Most caught on white chatterbait for me except the biggest one on tube. Mike caught his all on a chartreuse spinnerbait. We almost turned and went home three times, but the adventure was saved by a big bass each time so we continued. The bass all looked spawned out. They didn't have damaged fins. Maybe because there was no loose gravel friction where they spawned? I did see a 11" smallie that appeared to be guarding a 'spot' on the bedrock.
I was ready to pack it in on Memorial day due to the poor fishing (post spawn funk?) I experienced on Friday (1 17"er in 5 hours) and Saturday (2 streams 3 dink bass and some panfish in 6 hours). An hour with no bites for either of us and I was thinking of going home. I just happened to snap on the right bait at the right time (Chatterbait).
Our brains nearly talked us into going home again midday when we hadn't been bit for like 2 hours. I threw a tube in the right spot and was rewarded by the huge SMB.
If I had listened to the voices in my head. I would be crying today about how bad the late May fishing is.
BT 15 SMB (20"+, 18.5", 18",17", 16.25") 4 Rock bass
MC 13 SMB ( 19", 18", 15.75") 1 Rock Bass