The fish were likely spawning... Use plastics, lizards, jigs... and make sure u beat their beds with the bait... They will eventaully get pissed and eat it... I spent 45 minutes on one fish on the bed and eventually caught it...If u want a sure fire way to catch a bass on the bed... Catch a bluegill and throw it on the bass's bed..... it will attack it
If they are on the beds, bring two poles. Annoy it with a spinner bait(bump into the fish), then go back with a salamander and work it. You can tell in the first few minutes if theres a chance, watch the fish.