Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – June, 2014

Fishing on Lake Taneycomo is great!

The amount of power generated, and the current it causes, allow the angler to pinpoint where the trout are.  Heavy generation causes the trout to seek an area where current meets slack water.  Less generation allows the trout to feed in a mild current, usually offering a comfortable spot behind a rock, where a trout can wait for food to come, carried toward the rock by the current.

Early summer, so far, is a time of lower need for generation.  This low or no generation, offers an opportunity to wade up by the dam, and to fish from the bank, all up and down the lake!  The fish are hungry, and, the increased desire to feed, is delightful!

Jigs (white or sculpin in color), 1/6 oz. spoons, hard bait lures, and natural and scented bait all are working right now!  Try the new power bait colors and scents for a great bite!

Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal.  These fish have less time to examine passing food.  During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well.  The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind.  This same rig will work for the spin fisherperson.  The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it.  Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite. 

Try presenting bait below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream,.  When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz, (or more) sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above. 

Anglers throwing a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time.  During a time of no current, a 1/32 or 1/16oz. jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to 1/8oz. (or more).  Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom.  Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, then adjust your rig slightly more shallow, to avoid hanging up.  When you are using an indicator float or bobber, try setting it about 4 to 6ft. above the jig, so that the bait will get down to where the fish are.  Fly fishers can use even smaller jigs weights, but if the jig is not fished below an indicator, the jig needs to contact or be very close to the bottom.    

 

                                                The fish are biting!!!

                                            Good luck, and good fishing!  

      

 

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Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - June, 2014

Finally, Summer begins!!!   Fish are on the bank, this month, and are easy to find and catch!  Table Rock and Bull Shoals are such big lakes!  As water warms up, bass move into the coves, often hugging the bank, as they journey to their spawning beds. 

Lake surface temperatures can be an indicator of when the bass spawn will peak.  Some bass have not spawned yet, and others are already in post spawn.  Early in the post spawn period, bass often move into deeper water close to their spawning beds, and stay for a few weeks.  If there are no fish on the beds, move back off the shore, since it is easy to spook bass, during this time, and a boat in position to cast to the bank, is often right over the post spawn holding lie.

Almost any bait imaginable is working now!  Some baits are so hot this month, that every cast will result in trailing fish!  The hottest bait changes week to week.  Ask a fishing associate what bait is the hottest right now!

Warm rain will drive the fish into the very back of the coves, as they seek bait fish and craw fish that are moving in the same direction.  Square billed, shallow running, crank baits, are working, as the fish move into the shallows.  On any windy, rainy day, try a spinner bait

Top water hard and soft baits will work this month, as will wake and swim baits.  Ask an associate to help you find the right baits for the day you are going out. All finesse baits, such as shaky head jigs, finesse Carolina rigs, Texas rigged short worms and lizards, are now working.

A word about top water baits!

Try fishing either from dawn to 30 minutes after sunrise, or the last hour of sunlight in the evening.  At these times, bass move onto flats, and top water action picks up.   “Walking the dog,” is a way of retrieving a top water bait, to attract more bites.  Ask an associate about this method, and ask about add on feathered trebles, and other ways to enhance your top water offering.

There is a jig bite now.  Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom.  A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock.  It is hard to fish this bait too slowly.  Right now, bass are at all levels, looking for the most comfortable mix of oxygen and temperature they can find, from 2-35ft.  Look for them, especially off or next to, main lake and secondary points.  Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round or football head jig, brown, peanut butter and jelly, or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple.  Add scent to your jigs.  The jig bite really comes on, as the water warms up.  As bass patrol the lake points, looking for a meal, there is an interest in crawfish!  Remember, fish this bait slowly!  Also try light weight shaky head jigs, especially when a front is moving into the area.

Try fishing a drop shot rig, vertically.  Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is.  This technique works well, on fish suspended on the sides of main lake points.  You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.      

                                      

                                     They are out there!!!

                               Good Luck and Good Fishing!

 

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Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – May, 2014

Lake Taneycomo spring fishing remains great!

The amount of power generated, and the current it causes, allow the angler to pinpoint where the trout are.  Heavy generation causes trout to seek an area where current meets slack water.  Less generation allows the trout to feed in a mild current, usually offering a comfortable spot behind a rock, where a trout can wait for food to come, carried toward the rock by the current.

 

Recent heavy generation, and the cold temperature of the water from the bottom of Table Rock Lake, has resulted in fish migrating toward warmer water temperature, and less current, to feed.  Early May has brought with it, so far, the lessening of generation.  This low or no generation, offers an opportunity to wade up by the dam, and to fish from the bank, all up and down the lake!  The fish are hungry, and, the increased desire to feed, is delightful!

    

Jigs, 1/6 oz. spoons, hard bait lures, and natural and scented bait all are working right now!  Try the new power bait colors and scents for a great bite!

 

Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal.  These fish have less time to examine passing food.  During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well.  The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind.  This same rig will work for the spin fisherperson.  The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it.  Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite. 

 

Anglers who offer bait presented below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream, find success at times.  When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz, (or more) sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above. 

 

Anglers choosing to throw a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time.  During a time of no current, a 1/32 or 1/16oz. jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to 1/8oz. (or more).  Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom.  Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, then adjust your rig slightly more shallow, to avoid hanging up.  When you are using an indicator float or bobber, try setting it about 4 to 6ft. above the jig, so that the bait will get down to where the fish are.  Fly fishers can use even smaller jigs weights, but if the jig is not fished below an indicator, the jig needs to contact or be very close to the bottom.    

 

                                                The fish are biting!!!

 

                                            Good luck, and good fishing!  

      

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Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - May, 2014

Spring time is a great time for the angler!  Fish begin coming o the bank, and are easier to find and catch!  The annual spring migration starts with bass staging on points on the main lake, at the mouth of coves.  As water warms up, bass move into the coves, often hugging the bank, as they journey deep into the coves.  Any warm spring rain, will drive the fish into the very back of the coves, as they seek warmer water and the bait fish and craw fish that move in the same direction. 

 

Square billed, shallow running, crank baits, will begin working as the fish move into the shallows.  On any windy, rainy day, try a spinner bait.  Top water hard and soft baits will begin working this month, as will wake and swim baits.  Ask an associate to help you find the right baits for the day you are going out.   All finesse baits, such as shaky head jigs, finesse Carolina rigs, Texas rigged short worms and lizards, will work this month.


There is a jig bite now.  Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom.  A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock.  It is hard to fish this bait too slowly.  Right now, bass are at all levels, looking for the most comfortable mix of oxygen and temperature they can find, from 2-35ft.  Look for them, especially off or next to, main lake and secondary points.  Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round or football head jig, brown, peanut butter and jelly, or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple.  Add scent to your jigs.  The jig bite really comes on, as the water warms up.  As bass patrol the lake points, looking for a meal, there is an interest in crawfish!  Remember, fish this bait slowly! 

 

Don’t forget the Wiggle Wart bite!  It comes on fast, lasts two weeks, or so, and the action is fantastic!  Be on the lake at this time, if you can, and have a Wiggle Wart tied on. 

 

Try fishing a drop shot rig, vertically.  Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is.  This technique works well, on fish suspended on the sides of main lake points.  You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.      

 

Remember, during this time of the year, as the sun warms the water, or if there is a warm rain, fish will begin to move into the coves, first just inside, the main lake pints, then straight into the backs of the coves.  Warm rains will accelerate this migration.  When you have fish concentrated in one area, it can make for an unbelievable day of fishing. 

 

This is THE month of the year, for fantastic fishing!!!                        

                                      

                                     They are out there!!!

 

                               Good Luck and Good Fishing!

 

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Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – April, 2014

Lake Taneycomo early spring fishing remains great!

Shad are coming through the turbines, during generation, but the timing is iffy.  This is the exception, and not the rule, this year.  Be prepared, though… make sure to have a white shad imitation tied on, and get ready for unbelievable action, if the shad suddenly appear! 

If the shad are not around, the normal baits will work.  Jigs are working better than spoons now, and it is still true that using two egg imitations together, one of them being a white one, will work the best.  The best egg colors for the past week are orange or pink, with white, of course!  A new gulp egg color is sherbet blast, which combines orange and pink, in one gulp egg.  Air-infused worms are still working well.  Add purple to the color list of jigs.   

Amount of water generated, has been changing, hour by hour, throughout the day. If fishing is good, and then the bite stops, it can be that generation has changed, and more or less water is suddenly being released.  Try a different bait, when this happens.

When there is no current or wind, the clarity of the water becomes a big issue.  Try a smaller lure or fly, and the lightest line you can get.  If possible, attempt to get your bait offering deep enough to become invisible to you.  If you can’t see the trout, they can’t see you, and your catch rate will increase.  Try fishing a mini jig (less than 1/16 oz.), below a float.

If two generators are running, bank fishing is a good choice, if a boat is not available.  Where you find deeper areas near the bank, fish close in to the bank first, although bank fishers should stay back from the edge of the bank.  Trout are sensitive to vibrations, such as those made when walking along the bank shore line.  Stay back at least three feet.

Currents resulting from generation, or rain runoff, cause trout to look for areas with an eddy, and many of those are near bank structure.  Trout feed all day long while residing in these sheltered eddies, and are often accessible to the bank or dock fishing angler.  Power bait, earth worms, spoons, spinners, and flies all work on these fish, so fishing on Taneycomo is good!

Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal.  These fish have less time to examine passing food.  During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well.  The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind.  This same rig will work for the spin fisherperson.  The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it.  Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite. 

 

Anglers who offer bait presented below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream, find success at times.  When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz, (or more) sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above. 

 

Anglers choosing to throw a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time.  During a time of no current, a 1/32 or 1/16oz. jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to 1/8oz. (or more).  Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom.  Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, then adjust your rig slightly more shallow, to avoid hanging up.  When you are using an indicator float or bobber, try setting it about 4 to 6ft. above the jig, so that the bait will get down to where the fish are.  Fly fishers can use even smaller jigs weights, but if the jig is not fished below an indicator, the jig needs to contact the bottom.    

 

                                                The fish are biting!!!

 

                                            Good luck, and good fishing!  

      

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Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - April, 2014

As soon as the water warms up enough, bass in Table Rock and Bull Shoals will begin thinking about eating!  Another few degrees or so, just a few warm rains, and bass will begin to stage on the main lake points, waiting to attack passing schools of shad.  Look for where the main lake channel swings in toward a main lake point.  If there is generation, there will be current around the main channel, and shad are drawn to this current, so, a great fishing opportunity is possible.

 

The Alabama rig is working now!  This is an exciting bait to fish, and many anglers have caught more than one fish on a single cast!!!  Ask a fishing associate about this rig, how to fish it, and how to set it up.  Take a rig home, and try it out on the lake. 

 

The suspended jerk bait has tapered off a bit.  This bait will still work, but hungry bass in warmer parts of the lake, are easier to attract with the greater food value presented to them in the form of the Alabama rig.   
Do not give up on the jerk bait, though, since, as the water begins to warm up, this bite will pick up.  Suspended black bass, positioned in the water column at a depth that offers both comfortable temperature and oxygen levels, will attack a dying shad, if it looks real, and it stays around long enough to attract attention.  Present the shad imitation above the suspended bass, and employ a jerk and wait retrieve.  The longer the wait, between jerk retrieves, the better, as this allow the fish to react and attack.


There is a jig bite now.  Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom.  A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock.  It is hard to fish this bait too slowly.  Right now, bass are at all levels, looking for the most comfortable mix of oxygen and temperature they can find, from 4-45ft.  Look for them, especially off or next to, main lake and secondary points.  Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round or football head jig, brown, peanut butter and jelly, or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple.  Add scent to your jigs.  The jig bite really comes on, as the water warms up.  As bass patrol the lake points, looking for a meal, there is an interest in crawfish!  Remember, fish this bait slowly!  Don’t forget the Wiggle Wart bite.  It comes on fast, last only a week or so, and the action is fantastic!  Be on the lake at this time, if you can, and have a Wiggle Wart tied on. 

 

Try fishing a drop shot rig, vertically.  Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is.  This technique works well, on suspended fish!  You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.      

 

Remember, during this time of the year, as the sun warms the water, or if there is a warm rain, fish will begin to move into the coves, first just inside, the main lake pints, then straight into the backs of the coves.  Warm rains will accelerate this migration.  When you have fish concentrated in one area, it can make for an unbelievable day of fishing.                            

                                      

                                     They are out there!!!

 

                               Good Luck and Good Fishing!

 

0 Comments »

Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – March, 2014

       Lake Taneycomo winter fishing remains great! Water temperature is still very low. Crappie are still being harvested all around the landing area!

       Low water releases are here for now. Wading has been good below the Table Rock dam on upper Taneycomo. The shad kill could come at any time! Get ready, … make sure to have some white imitation to throw, and be prepared for unbelievable action! The colder Table Rock gets, the better the chance for a big shad kill near the dam. When this happens, these dead shad will be swept through the turbines, and into Taneycomo! The trout go nuts when shad are presented in quantity, and you can be part of the resulting carnage, if you present your white shad imitation to the feeding fish at this time!

        If the shad are not around, the normal baits will work. Jigs are working better than spoons now, and it is still true that using two egg imitations together, one of them being a white one, will work the best. The best egg colors for the past week are orange or pink, with white, of course! A new gulp egg color is sherbet blast, which combines orange and pink, in one gulp egg. Air-infused worms are still working well. Add purple to the color list of jigs.

       When there is no current or wind, the clarity of the water becomes a big issue. Try a smaller lure or fly, and the lightest line you can get. If possible, attempt to get your bait offering deep enough to become invisible to you. If you can’t see the trout, they can’t see you, and your catch rate will increase. Try fishing a mini jig (less than 1/16 oz), below a float.

        If two generators are running, bank fishing is a good choice, if a boat is not available. Where you find deeper areas near the bank, fish close in to the bank first, although bank fishers should stay back from the edge of the bank. Trout are sensitive to vibrations, such as those made when walking along the bank shore line. Stay back at least three feet.

        Currents resulting from generation, or rain runoff, cause trout to look for areas with an eddy, and many of those are near bank structure. Trout feed all day long while residing in these sheltered eddies, and are often accessible to the bank or dock fishing angler. Power bait, earth worms, spoons, spinners, and flies all work on these fish, so fishing on Taneycomo is good!

       Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal. These fish have less time to examine passing food. During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well. The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind. This same rig will work for the spin fisherman. The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it. Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite.

       Anglers who offer bait presented below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream, find success at times. When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above.

        Anglers choosing to throw a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time. During a time of no current, a 1/32 or 1/16oz. jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to 1/8 oz. Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom. Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, then adjust your rig slightly more shallow, to avoid hanging up. When you are using an indicator float or bobber, try setting it about 4 to 6ft. above the jig, so that the bait will get down to where the fish are. Fly fishers can use even smaller jigs weights, but if the jig is not fished below an indicator, the jig needs to contact the bottom.

The fish are biting!!!

Good luck, and good fishing!

0 Comments »

Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - March, 2014

As soon as the water warms up enough, bass in Table Rock and Bull Shoals will begin thinking about eating!  Right now, most fish are suspended at a comfortable temperature and oxygen level.  When surface temperatures are in the 30s, bass are not really in an eating mode, because their metabolism is so low, that they do not need much to eat.   Water surface temperatures are climbing into the low 40’s now, and with warming water, the bass will begin to need food. 

Right now, dead shad are at the bottom of most lake coves, and pelicans are gorging themselves on this fortuitous delicacy!  Soon, our bass will be doing the same thing! 

The Alabama rig is working now!  This is an exciting bait to fish, and many anglers have caught more than one fish on a single cast!!!  Ask a fishing associate about this rig, how to fish it, and how to rig it.  Take a rig home, and try it out on the lake. 

The suspended jerk bait is tapering off a bit.  This bait will still work, but hungry bass in warmer parts of the lake, are easier to attract with the greater food value presented to them in the form of the Alabama rig.   
Do not give up on the jerk bait, though, since, as the water begins to warm up, this bite will be back on.  Suspended black bass, positioned in the water column at a depth that offers both the comfortable temperature and oxygen level, will attack a dying shad, if it looks real, and it stays around long enough to attract attention.  Present the shad imitation above the suspended bass, and employ a jerk and wait retrieve.  The longer the wait, between jerk retrieves, the better, as this allow the fish to react and attack.

There is a jig bite now.  Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom.  A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock.  It is hard to fish this bait too slowly.  Right now, bass are at all levels, looking for the most comfortable mix of oxygen and temperature they can find, from 4-45ft.  Look for them, especially off or next to, main lake and secondary points.  Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round or football head jig, brown, peanut butter and jelly, or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple.  Add scent to your jigs.  The jig bite really comes on, as the water warms up.  As bass patrol the lake points, looking for a meal, there is an interest in crawfish!

Try fishing a drop shot rig, vertically.  Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is.  This technique works well, on suspended fish!  You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.      

Cold weather increases the need for home heating, which can increase power consumption.  Dam generation creates power.  Generation from the dams causes current off main lake points, attracting the shad.  Therefore, do not pass up any main lake point that looks good to you, during this time of the year, since fish congregate on and around these points, looking for shad and crawfish. 

Black bass can be particularly difficult to find during the late winter. As the water warms, though, keep looking, and you can find a group of hungry fish, waiting for you!!! 

                        

                                      They are out there!!!

 

             Good Luck and Good Fishing!

 

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Late Winter Fishing On Table Rock Lake

       This winter has been a cold one in the Ozarks. The water is stained, unlike the extremely clear water that is normal most late winters. Dead shad are on or near the bottom in most coves, and bass are out in deeper water, many off main lake points, and in deep water around islands, or just suspended over very deep water, in the middle of the main lake.

       Bass can be caught on Alabama rigs, suspended jerk baits, jigs, tubes, and spinner baits fished deep. Soon, the surface temperature of the lake water will slowly begin to rise, and bass will venture back into, first, the main lake coves. When this happens, anglers who fish main and secondary lake points, the back of main lake coves, deep bluff banks, and deep flats, will begin to pick up fish.

        There are indicators of a great fishing season coming this year. Anglers who concentrate on making plans to fish more than usual this spring will likely be rewarded with great success. Just like the Farmer’s almanac successfully predicts weather most years, indicators like dead shad on the bottom of shallow and mid-depth coves, both main lake and secondary, are an indicator of the future spring bass gorging-frenzy that is likely to occur this spring.

       While waiting for spring, an angler can search for a main or secondary lake point, one which offers oxygen and a water temperature that is a bit warmer than surrounding areas, and find and fish the area where these three things meet with bottom structure. There will be fish in that area, and perhaps a lucky angler can entice the bite!!! Good luck, as we wait for spring!!!

Steve Fritz

Fishing Lead Bass Pro Shops

White River Outpost

Branson, MO

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Get Ready for Spring White Bass! Creating New Flies

       I looked at the Grizzly Marabou on the peg, in the White River Fly Shop, and thought back to a time, about 15 years ago, … only a couple of years after I started to work in the fly shop at Bass Pro Shop, in Springfield. I had been altering existing fly patterns, and creating new fly patterns, for over 20 years, at that time. One glance at the variegated color of the grizzly marabou (it was barred) ,… and an idea for a new series of jigs was born!

        After recent trips to local creeks and rivers, to fly fish for white bass (called sand bass, back in Texas and Oklahoma), I realized I needed a new jig pattern for the white bass spawning run. Fishing side by side with many of the locals, who were out to harvest some of these “line sides”, I was being out fished! The jigs they used were homemade, and I quickly tied some up, and then I could keep up with the local anglers, but I wanted my own patterns!

       I decided the grizzly marabou was going to be the tail section of the new pattern, which would be tied on a jig hook, probably a 1/64 ounce jig head. Having secured these, the next step was to sit and create a new pattern. The body was big up by the jig head, the front made by winding three turns of medium chenille, and behind that on the hook, were turns of pearl flashabou, all the way back to the grizzly marabou tail. It looked great!

        I tried it out the next day, and it worked even better than it looked! An entire series of shad and minnows, in many colors, followed, most of them fish catchers! They were new, or at least new to me, and these patterns still work today, over fifteen years later!

                                                                                   So….

       Beginning In March, every Thursday evening at 7pm, there will be a meeting of The White River Fly Tyers, in the fly shop, at Bass Pro shops White River Outpost! This is a new fly tying club! There are no dues. ‘Wanna become a member? Just show up! Every Thursday, beginning March 6th, we will get together and tie, swap stories, have a good time, and watch a demo of a new fly being tied at each meeting. How can you resist? I’ll see you there, and maybe we will create a new fly pattern that night!!!

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Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – February, 2014

Lake Taneycomo winter fishing remains great! Water temperature is low right now, down to the lower 40’s! Browns are being caught in quantity, and overall, the trout are running larger than in recent weeks! Crappie are being harvested all around the landing area!

        Low water releases are here for now. Wading has been good below the Table Rock dam on upper Taneycomo. The shad kill could come at any time! Get ready, … make sure to have some white imitation to throw, and get ready for unbelievable action! The colder Table Rock gets, the better the chance for a big shad kill near the dam. When this happens, these dead shad will be swept through the turbines, and into Taneycomo! The trout go nuts, when shad are presented in quantity, and you can be part of the resulting carnage, if you present your white shad imitation to the feeding fish at this time!

        If the shad are not around, the normal baits will work. Jigs are working better than spoons now, and it is still true that using two egg imitations together, one of them being a white one, will work the best. Air-infused worms are still working well. Add purple to the color list of jigs.

        When there is no current or wind, the clarity of the water becomes a big issue. Try a smaller lure or fly, and the lightest line you can get. If possible, attempt to get your bait offering deep enough to become invisible to you. If you can’t see the trout, they can’t see you, and your catch rate will increase.

        If two generators are running, bank fishing is a good choice, if a boat is not available. Where you find deeper areas near the bank, fish close in to the bank first, although bank fishers should stay back from the edge of the bank. Trout are sensitive to vibrations, such as those made when walking along the bank shore line. Stay back at least three feet.

       Currents resulting from generation, or rain runoff, cause trout to look for areas with an eddy, and many of those are near bank structure. Trout feed all day long while residing in these sheltered eddies, and are often accessible to the bank or dock fishing angler. Power bait, earth worms, spoons, spinners, and flies all work on these fish, so fishing on Taneycomo is good!

        Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal. These fish have less time to examine passing food. During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well. The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind. This same rig will work for the spin fisherperson. The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it. Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite.

        Anglers who offer bait presented below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream, find success at times. When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above.

       Anglers choosing to throw a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time. During a time of no current, a 1/32 or 1/16oz. jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to 8 oz. Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom. Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, then adjust your rig slightly more shallow, to avoid hanging up. When you are using an indicator float or bobber, try setting it about 4 to 8ft. above the jig, so that the bait will get down to where the fish are. Fly fishers can use even smaller jigs weights, but the jig need to contact the bottom. Remember though, trout have eyes that see best ahead, up, and to the side. Trout often do not see food items that are presented to them at a lower vertical point in the stream than the depth at which they are holding. So, if you present something to them on the bottom, when they are holding on the bottom, they see it, and may feed on it. If the trout holding lie is in the surface film, however, a mini jig or other bait presented 6” or less, under an indicator or bobber, will be more apt to be seen. The fish are biting!!!

Good luck, and good fishing!

0 Comments »

Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - February, 2014

       The suspended jerk bait bite is on! This bait will work for the next couple of months! Suspended black bass, positioned in the water column at a depth that offers both the comfortable temperature and oxygen level, will attack a dying shad, if it looks real, and it stays around long enough to attract attention. Present the shad imitation above the suspended bass, and employ a jerk and wait retrieve. The longer the wait, between jerk retrieves, the better, as this allow the fish to react and attack.

        The Alabama rig is working now! This is an exciting bait to fish, and many anglers have caught more than one fish on a single cast!!! Ask a fishing associate about this rig, how to fish it, and how to rig it. Take a rig home, and try it out on the lake.

       Spinner baits are working – early, late, and in the wind or rain. Try a 1/2oz. double willow blade spinner bait. Natural shad colors are working well.

       There is a jig bite now. Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom. A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock. It is hard to fish this bait too slowly. Right now, bass are at all levels, looking for the most comfortable mix of oxygen and temperature they can find. from 4-35ft. Look for them, especially off or next to, main lake and secondary points. Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round or football head jig, brown, peanut butter and jelly, or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple. Add scent to your jigs.

       Try fishing a drop shot rig, vertically. Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is. This technique works well, on suspended fish! You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.

       Cold weather increases the need for home heating, which increases power consumption. Dam generation creates power. Generation from the dams causes current off main lake points, attracting the shad. Therefore, do not pass up any main lake point that looks good to you, during this time of the year, since fish congregate on and around these points, looking for shad and crawfish.

       Black bass can be harder to find during the winter months. Keep looking, though, and you can find a group of hungry fish, waiting for you!!! They are out there!!!

Good Luck and Good Fishing!

0 Comments »

Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - January, 2014

       The suspended jerk bait bite is on! This bait will work for the next couple of months! Suspended black bass, positioned in the water column at a depth that offers both the comfortable temperature and oxygen level, will attack a dying shad, if it looks real, and it stays around long enough to attract attention. Present the shad imitation above the suspended bass, and employ a jerk and wait retrieve. The longer the wait, between jerk retrieves, the better, as this allow the fish to react and attack.

        The Alabama rig is working now! This is an exciting bait to fish, and many anglers have caught more than one fish on a single cast!!! Ask a fishing associate about this rig, how to fish it, and how to rig it. Take a rig home, and try it out on the lake. You will not be sorry you did. These rigs make excellent stocking stuffers!!!

       Spinner baits are working – early, late, and in the wind or rain. Try a 1/2oz. double willow blade spinner bait. Natural shad colors are working well.

       There is a jig bite now. Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom. A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock. It is hard to fish this bait too slowly. Right now, bass are at all levels, looking for the most comfortable mix of oxygen and temperature they can find. from 4-35ft. Look for them, especially off or next to, main lake and secondary points. Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round or football head jig, brown, peanut butter and jelly, or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple. Add scent to your jigs.

       Try fishing a drop shot rig, vertically. Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is. This technique works well, on suspended fish! You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.

        Do not pass up any main lake point that looks good to you, during this time of the year, since fish congregate on and around these points, looking for shad and crawfish.

       Black bass can be harder to find during the winter months. Keep looking, though, and you can find a group of hungry fish, waiting for you!!! They are out there!!!

Good Luck and Good Fishing!

0 Comments »

Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – January, 2014

       Winter fishing can be fantastic, on Lake Taneycomo!!! Trout often want smaller flies, so go to size #18-20, on midges, and #16-18, on scuds and small nymphs, if the fish are refusing the bigger stuff.

       When there is no current or wind, the clarity of the water becomes a big issue. Try a smaller lure or fly, and the lightest line you can get. If possible, attempt to get your bait offering deep enough to become invisible to you. If you can’t see the trout, they can’t see you, and your catch rate will increase.

       Changing water conditions offer new opportunities. Lake levels are back down. When no generators are running, wading up by the dam is possible. Even with one generator going, some wading may be possible.

        If two generators are running, bank fishing is a better choice, if a boat is not available. Where you find deeper areas near the bank, fish close in to the bank first, although bank fishers should stay back from the edge of the bank. Trout are sensitive to vibrations, such as those made when walking along the bank shore line. Stay back at least three feet.

       Currents resulting from generation, or rain runoff, cause trout to look for areas with an eddy, and many of those are near bank structure. Trout feed all day long while residing in these sheltered eddies, and are often accessible to the bank or dock fishing angler. Power bait, earth worms, spoons, spinners, and flies all work on these fish, so fishing on Taneycomo is good!

        Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal. These fish have less time to examine passing food. During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well. The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind. This same rig will work for the spin fisherperson. The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it. Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite.

       Anglers who offer bait presented below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream, find success at times. When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above. Anglers choosing to throw a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time. During a time of no current, a 1/16oz jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to ¼ oz. Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom. Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, then adjust your rig slightly more shallow, to avoid hanging up. Remember, trout have eyes that see best ahead, up, and to the side. Trout often do not see food items that are presented to them at a lower vertical point in the stream than the depth at which they are holding. So, if you present something to them on the bottom, when they are holding on the bottom, they see it, and may feed on it. If the trout holding lie is in the surface film, however, a mini jig or other bait presented 6” or less, under an indicator or bobber, will be more apt to be seen.

        Fly fishers can streamer fish with great success, during mild generation. Olive wooly buggers, slow stripped in the current, will take trout, as will many other streamer patterns. Flies such as soft hackles and crackle backs can be fished as small streamers, and will often take trout any time of the day. Remember, small and slow. Go smaller with your baits, and move them slowly. Give the trout time to decide to take them.

        Spoons and spinners will take fish better, when there is generation. Vary the weight of the lure, to match the amount of force of the current. Greater generation requires more lure weight. Anglers wanting the best all-around lure weight will find 1/6 oz. spoons and spinners a good bet.

       Thomas Bouyant and Little Cleo spoons are working well, and best power bait colors have been white, pink, red, orange and yellow Gulp eggs. Fish two colors of eggs on the same hook for more bites. Don’t forget real earth worms, and add air to them, if possible, to make them float. A real earthworm, when combined with a Gulp egg, will take a surprising number of trout. The fish are biting!!!

Good luck, and good fishing!

0 Comments »

Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – December, 2013

   Winter fishing can be fantastic, on Lake Taneycomo!!! Trout often want smaller flies, so go to size #18-20, on midges, and #16-18, on scuds and small nymphs. These sizes will hold true for the next few months.

    Some brown trout are still spawning. There are a few browns staged below #3 outlet, up below the dam, and a few left in the area between outlets #1 and #2. Remember to revive any brown caught during the next couple of months, since these fish are often weakened by the spawn, and any help you give them, helps them recover, after being caught.

    When there is no current or wind, the clarity of the water becomes a big issue. Try a smaller lure or fly, and the lightest line you can get. If possible, attempt to get your bait offering deep enough to become invisible to you. If you can’t see the trout, they can’t see you, and your catch rate will increase.

    Changing water conditions offer new opportunities. Lake levels are back down. When no generators are running, wading up by the dam is possible. Even with one generator going, some wading may be possible.

    If two generators are running, bank fishing is a better choice, if a boat is not available. Where you find deeper areas near the bank, fish close in to the bank first, although bank fishers should stay back from the edge of the bank. Trout are sensitive to vibrations, such as those made when walking along the bank shore line. Stay back at least three feet.

   Currents resulting from generation, or rain runoff, cause trout to look for areas with an eddy, and many of those are near bank structure. Trout feed all day long while residing in these sheltered eddies, and are often accessible to the bank or dock fishing angler. Power bait, earth worms, spoons, spinners, and flies all work on these fish, so fishing on Taneycomo is good!

   Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal. These fish have less time to examine passing food. During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well. The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind. This same rig will work for the spin fisherperson. The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it. Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite.

   Anglers who offer bait presented below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream, find success at times. When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above.

    Anglers choosing to throw a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time. During a time of no current, a 1/16oz jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to ¼ oz. Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom. Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, and more fish will see the bait, and your bites per day will increase. Remember, trout have eyes that see best ahead, up, and to the side. Trout normally do not see food items that are presented to them at a lower vertical point in the stream than their holding water. So, if you present something to them on the bottom, when they are holding on the bottom, they see it, and may feed on it. If the trout holding lie is in the surface film, however, a mini jig or other bait presented 6” or less, under an indicator or bobber, will be seen, and may be taken.

    Fly fishers can streamer fish with great success, during mild generation. Olive wooly buggers, slow stripped in the current, will take trout, as will many other streamer patterns. Flies such as soft hackles and crackle backs can be fished as small streamers, and will often take trout any time of the day. Remember, small and slow. Go smaller with your baits, and move them slowly. Give the trout time to decide to take them.

    Spoons and spinners will take fish when there is generation. Vary the weight of the lure, to match the amount of force of the current. Greater generation requires more lure weight. Anglers wanting the best all-around lure weight will find 1/6 oz. spoons and spinners a good bet.

    Thomas Bouyant and Little Cleo spoons are working well, and best power bait colors have been white, pink, red, orange and Gulp eggs. Fish two colors of eggs on the same hook for more bites. Don’t forget real earth worms, and add air to them, if possible, to make them float. A real earthworm, when combined with a Gulp egg, will take a surprising number of trout. Minnows will work well, also.

    Trout go for nymphs as temperatures drop. The angle of the sun, and the length of the days, help get the water temperatures down. Try sizes #14-#18, especially the point fly, if you use a two fly rig, and add a small midge, size #18 or #20 below that big point fly. If the water is crystal clear, make the tippet on the trailer fly 2lb. fluorocarbon.

    Remember, the current can change at a moment’s notice. Take care to watch water levels. Fall is here, and it is the perfect time to catch big trout! It is also just nice to be outside, during this time of the year!

Good luck, and good fishing!

0 Comments »

Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - December, 2013

The suspended jerk bait bite is on early this year! This bait will work for the next couple of months! Suspended black bass, positioned in the water column at a depth that offers both the comfortable temperature and oxygen level, will attack a dying shad, if it looks real, and it stays around long enough to attract attention. Present the shad imitation above the suspended bass, and employ a jerk and wait retrieve. The longer the wait, between jerk retrieves, the better, as this allow the fish to react and attack.

    The Alabama rig is starting to work now! This is an exciting bait to fish, and many anglers have caught more than one fish on a single cast!!! Ask a fishing associate about this rig, how to fish it, and how to rig it. Take a rig home, and try it out on the lake. You will not be sorry you did. These rigs make excellent stocking stuffers!!!

    Spinner baits are working now. Try a 1/2oz. double willow blade spinner bait, especially on any windy or rainy day. Natural shad colors are working well.

    There is a jig bite now. Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom. A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock. It is hard to fish this bait too slowly. Right now, bass are from 4-35ft. deep, either in the backs of coves, or off or next to, main lake and secondary points. Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round head jig, brown or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple. Add scent to your jigs.

   Try a drop shot rig. Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is. This technique works well, on suspended fish! You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.

    Do not pass up any main lake point that looks good to you, during this time of the year, since fish congregate on and around these points, looking for shad and crawfish.

   Slow fishing, employing a finesse Caroline rig, jig and trailer, tube, square billed crank bait, or other bait which will work in the medium depth of a deeper cove flat or secondary flat, will pay off.

   Black bass can be harder to find during this transition time of the year. Keep looking, though, and you can find a group of hungry fish, just for you!!!

   They are out there waiting for you!!!

   Good Luck and Good Fishing!

0 Comments »

Want to Catch More Trout?

          When you get right down to it, there are ways to catch more trout. What does an angler need to know to be more successful on the stream and how can that knowledge best be put to use? It is a matter of trout versus angler.

          First, the angler needs to understand a little about trout; what trout feel, what they see, and what they hear. Birds are an enemy of the trout. Anglers who wear natural colors that blend with the background when fishing will attract less attention from wary fish. Moving slow is a good idea, as is keeping a low profile, and positioning your shadow where it is not cast over the fish. Not scraping the gravel or other bottom structure with shoes or paddles will help minimize any alarm trout may feel. All of the above stealth techniques, help to keep trout from thinking the angler is a bird, or other predator who might do them harm. So, be stealthy! Wear clothes that blend in. Move slowly and carefully, and make as little noise as possible.

         The angle of the sun is important. Early in the morning and again late in the evening, sunlight tends to bounce off the water’s surface and not penetrate down into the water. Trout feel more at ease when you cannot see them. So, fish early, fish late and fish cloudy days. Also, the wind or rain, or both, provide trout a canopy of comfort, by not allowing a clear view from above. Remember, if you can see the trout, they most likely can see you, which is something you dont want.

         First, cast to the closest place that looks like it will hold a fish and then to those places that are further away. This way line and/or  lure shadows are not cast over a fish. A bird in flight, casts a shadow that is similar to a lure cast over a fish. When there is a current, cast above the fish and let the bait drift down to the fish, if possible.

         Work on knots, and practice tying them until they are easy for you to tie correctly. Take the time, every time, to rig correctly. Slow down, so that you do not have a bad rig, when the biggest fish of your life bites.

        An angler who takes the above steps, will alert fewer trout to danger, and thereby get more bites, and catch more trout. Good luck and good fishing!!! See you there!!!

Steve Fritz

Fishing Lead Bass Pro Shops

White River Outpost

Branson, MO

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Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report – November 2013

As the leaves fall, trout begin to hang out under the lake’s leaf canopy.  Since trout are afraid of birds, this surface coating of leaves offers the trout a respite from constant worry about being eaten by their winged adversary. 

Fall is the time when most brown trout spawn.  There will be many browns staged below #3 outlet, up below the dam, and more in the area between outlets #1 and #2.   Remember to revive any brown caught during the next couple of months, since these fish are often weakened by the spawn, and any help you give them, helps them recover, after being caught.  

When there is no current or wind, the clarity of the water becomes a big issue.  Try a smaller lure or fly, and the lightest line you can get.  If possible, attempt to get your bait offering deep enough to become invisible to you.  If you can’t see the trout, they can’t see you, and your catch rate will increase.

Changing water conditions offer new opportunities.  Lake levels are back down.   When no generators are running, wading up by the dam is possible.  Even with one generator going, some wading may be possible. 

If two generators are running, bank fishing is a better choice, if a boat is not available.  Where you find deeper areas near the bank, fish close in to the bank first, although bank fishers should stay back from the edge of the bank.  Trout are sensitive to vibrations, such as those made when walking along the bank shore line.  Stay back at least three feet.

Currents resulting from generation, or rain runoff, cause trout to look for areas with an eddy, and many of those are near bank structure.  Trout feed all day long while residing in these sheltered eddies, and are often accessible to the bank or dock fishing angler.  Power bait, earth worms, spoons, spinners, and flies all work on these fish, so fishing on Taneycomo,  is good!

Trout become a little less finicky when current brings them a quick meal.  These fish have less time to examine passing food.  During this time, a presentation of two flies, under an indicator, works well.  The first fly could be an egg imitation, a worm, nymph, scud, or midge, followed by another fly about 3 ft. behind.  This same rig will work for the spin fisherperson.  The fish concentrate on the first offering, and if that is refused, the second bait is on them quickly, and little time is left to evaluate it.  Fish having to make this quick choice, often choose to bite. 

 

Anglers who offer bait presented below a bobber, drifted from upstream to downstream, find success at times.  When the bobber rig does not work, try a 1/8 to1/4oz sinker rig, and allow it to rest on the bottom, with a bait above. 

 

Anglers choosing to throw a jig, need to adjust for the amount of current at the time.  During a time of no current, a 1/16oz jig is fine, but as generation increases, jig weight can vary all the way to ¼ oz.  Excluding a mini jig, most jigs attract more fish when they are fished on or very near the bottom.  Keep increasing your jig weight, until you are in contact with the bottom, and more fish will see the bait, and your bites per day will increase.  Remember, trout have eyes that see best ahead, up, and to the side.  Trout normally do not see food items that are presented to them at a lower vertical point in the stream than their holding water.  So, if you present something to them on the bottom, when they are holding on the bottom, they see it, and may feed on it.  If the trout holding lie is in the surface film, however, a mini jig or other bait presented 6” or less, under an indicator or bobber, will be seen, and may be taken.

 


Fly fishers can streamer fish with great success, during mild generation.  Olive wooly buggers, slow stripped in the current, will take trout, as will many other streamer patterns.  Flies such as soft hackles and crackle backs can be fished as small streamers, and will often take trout any time of the day.

 

Spoons and spinners will take fish when there is generation.  Vary the weight of the lure, to match the amount of force of the current.  Greater generation requires more lure weight.  Anglers wanting the best all-around lure weight will find 1/6 oz. spoons and spinners a good bet.

 

Thomas Bouyant and Little Cleo spoons are working well, and best power bait colors have been white, pink, red, orange and Gulp eggs.  Fish two colors of eggs on the same hook for more bites.  Don’t forget real earth worms, and add air to them, if possible, to make them float.  A real earthworm, when combined with a Gulp egg, will take a surprising number of trout.  Minnows will work well, also.

 

Trout go for nymphs as fall temperatures drop.  The angle of the sun, and the length of the days, help get the water temperatures down.  Try sizes #12-#16, especially the point fly, if you use a two fly rig, and add a small midge, size #18 or #20 below that big point fly.

 

Remember, the current can change at a moment’s notice.  Take care to watch water levels. Fall is here, and it is the perfect time to catch big trout!  It is also just nice to be outside, during this time of the year!

 

                        Good luck, and good fishing!  

0 Comments »

Table Rock & Bull Shoals Fishing Report - November, 2013

Bass are close to shore now.  November is a great time to throw a jig!  Bass bulking up for winter, will eat gobs of crawfish this month.  Get out there!  The scenery is breath taking!  The fish are hungry!

 

Crawfish spend most of their time on the bottom.  A crawfish imitation needs to move slowly, from behind one rock, to the next rock.  It is hard to fish this bait too slowly.  Right now, bass are from 4-35ft. deep, either in the backs of coves, or off or next to, main lake and secondary points.  Try a 1/4 to 5/8oz. round head jig, brown or green pumpkin in color, and add a trailer, green pumpkin, watermelon candy, or cinnamon purple.  Add scent to your jigs.

 

Spinner baits are working now.  Try a 1/2oz. double willow blade spinner bait, especially on any windy or rainy day.  Natural shad colors are working well.

 

Shaky head fishing is hot right now!  Take a 1/4oz or heavier shaky head jig head (it is built to make the soft bait you attach to it stand up), and add a crawfish, worm, or baitfish soft trailer, and work it slowly along the bottom, frequently stopping the bait completely.  The bass just cannot leave this bait alone!  Try a skirted twin tail grub, in brown purple or smoke purple.

 

Try a drop shot rig.  Find a line of trees or stumps off a bank with a varied depth.  The crawfish, shad, or pan fish the bass are after, will be moving among these trees, and suspended bass will be ready to ambush.  Look for underwater timber at all depths.  Mark the depths where the most bait fish and bass are found, and find timber at that depth.  Fish straight up and down to these suspended fish.  Ask a fishing associate how to rig for this drop shot bite, and ask what the current best bait is.  You can also fish this drop shot rig like a finesse Carolina rig, by casting it out and retrieving it the same way you would a Carolina rig.      

 

There is still a top water bite on most of each lake.  Top water lures, such a s a Zara Spook, Chug Bug, etc., will work during this time, as will most of the wake baits.  Beginning at dawn, look for fish rising on big flats, or cove backs, and fish in these areas.  Many times, the bite will end when the sun becomes visible, though, the bite can go on all day! 

 

From late morning to early evening, tubes often work well, since black bass key on crawdads during this time.  Try a ¼ to 1/2 oz. jig, with a tube, on main lake and secondary cove points, and any transition banks or flat.  It is important to add scent to all soft plastic, to maximize the time fish hold the bait in their mouth.  Try fishing around  docks, pole cedar lined banks, chunk rock points and cove banks, with a jig, tube, drop shot rig, Carolina rigged lizard, finesse worm, French fry, or creature bait, also Carolina rigged.  Don’t pass up any different feature, like an underwater hump, depression, ledge, chunk rock section, etc.  Shallow to medium depth flats, near deep, main lake water, often produce nice fish. 

 

Do not pass up any main lake point that looks good to you, during this time of the year, since smallmouth congregate there, and are now at about 10-35 ft. depth.

 

Slow fishing, employing a finesse Caroline rig, jig and trailer, tube, square billed crank bait, or other bait which will work in the shallow to medium depth of a cove flat or secondary flat, will pay off. 

                         They are out there waiting for you!!!

 

                               Good Luck and Good Fishing!

 

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Field Report- Johnny Morris Signature Baitcaster Reel

Bass Pro Shop's 11 bearing reel, the “Johnny Morris Signature Series Baitcaster”, is awesome!  This reel is comes with an easy to set dual brake system, composed of one 6-pin centrifugal brake, and an adjustable magnetic brake.  Since this reel’s spool tension knob has click stops on it, making minor adjustments quick and easy, and since it stays where it is set, when both brakes and the spool tension are set, it is often possible to fish all day without an over run!

The Signature Series Reel has a light weight carbon fiber recurve handle, a slick titanium nitrate line guide, and it features a 6-disc drag system, which provide a smooth, grab-free pressure against the spool, as the fish takes out line.  The reel is offered in 5 models:  6.4:1 retrieve ratio in left or right hand retrieve; 7.1:1 retrieve ratio in left or right retrieve ratio; and a 6.4:1 wide spool version, in right hand retrieve.

At the start of the day, I fished a spinner bait, a buzz bait, and various top water and crank baits, in a morning fog.  The reel did not disappoint me!  Each time I changed a lure, the reel adjustment was easy make, and it held, every time, exactly where I set it.  As the fog cleared, I was able to venture out into the main lake, where I fished the rest of the day, throwing football jigs with a craw trailer, and shaky head jigs with skirted, double tail trailer. 

The reel is amazing!  It is incredibly smooth!  The click stops on the spool tension knob made the reel easy to change as I changed jig weight. 

I wondered if the 8.5 oz. weight would feel heavy.  The Signature did not feel the slightest bit heavy as I fished it.  

The Johnny Morris Signature Baitcaster, is extremely solid.  This is a very fine reel, and I am proud to own it.  I own other reels, also very fine, but this one will be a go-to reel, when I need a reel that will not fail!

 

Steve Fritz

Fishing Lead

Bass Pro Shops

White River Outpost       

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