Archive for Uncategorized

Missouri Dept. of Conservation Fishing Report August 1 2013

Central Lakes

Binder Lake
Information: 573-815-7900
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Bluegill: Fair Channel Catfish: Fair
black bass fair; bluegill fair; channel catfish fair; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Blind Pony Lake
Information: 573-815-7900
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Bluegill: Good Channel Catfish: Good
the lake is 1′ low; bluegill good on worms; channel catfish good on
stinkbaits; all other species slow; the lake is closed to private boats and
bait held or transported in containers with water is prohibited.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Lake of the Ozarks (Bagnell Tailwater)
Information: 573-346-2210
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Slow White Bass: Slow Crappie: Slow Catfish: Slow
black bass slow, try worms and dark colored soft plastics; white bass slow,
try light colored soft plastics and Rooster Tails; crappie slow, try minnows
and crappie jigs; catfish slow, try cut baits, stinkbaits and chicken livers.

(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Lake of the Ozarks (Glaize)
Information: 573-346-2210
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Slow White Bass: Slow Crappie: Slow Catfish: Fair
black bass slow, try dark colored soft plastics and buzzbaits; white bass
slow, try light colored soft plastics and spoons; crappie slow, try minnows
and crappie jigs; catfish fair on cut baits, stinkbaits and hot dogs.

(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Lake of the Ozarks (Gravois)
Information: 573-346-2210
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Slow White Bass: Slow Catfish: Fair Crappie: Slow
black bass slow, try plastic worms; white bass slow; catfish fair on cut shad
and stinkbaits; crappie slow, try minnows.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Lake of the Ozarks (Niangua)
Information: 573-346-2210
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Crappie: Slow Catfish: Good White Bass: Fair
black bass good on plastic worms and topwater lures; crappie slow, try using
minnows; catfish good on cut shad and worms; white bass fair on light colored
lures.

(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Lake of the Ozarks (Osage)
Information: 573-346-2210
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Crappie: Slow Catfish: Good White Bass: Fair
black bass good using topwater lures and crankbaits; crappie slow, try using
minnows; catfish good on cut shad or chicken liver; white bass fair on
natural baits.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Little Dixie Lake
Information: 573-815-7900
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Largemouth Bass: Good Crappie: Fair Bluegill: Good
largemouth bass good on topwater lures; crappie fair on live minnows;
bluegill good on crickets; all other species slow; all use including fishing
is prohibited from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
Lamine River
Information: 573-815-7900
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Good Flathead Catfish: Fair
the river is 2′ low and rising; channel catfish good from Harriman Hill
Access downstream to De Bourgmont Access on a variety of baits; flathead
catfish fair on setlines baited with goldfish above Robert’s Bluff Access;
all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Missouri River (Middle)
Information: 573-815-7900
Water Level (Range): low
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Good Blue Catfish: Good
channel catfish good on stinkbait; blue catfish good on cut carp; all other
species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Osage (lower, at Tuscumbia)
Information: 573-346-2210
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Slow White Bass: Slow Crappie: Slow Catfish: Slow
black bass slow, try worms and dark colored soft plastics; white bass slow,
try light colored soft plastics and Rooster Tails; crappie slow, try minnows
and crappie jigs; catfish slow, try cut baits, stinkbaits and chicken livers.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

===============
Kansas City Lakes
—————
Atkinson Lake (Schell-Osage CA)
Information: 660-885-6981
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Fair Crappie: Fair White Bass: Fair
All other species fair.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

James A. Reed Memorial Wildlife Area
Information: 816-622-0900
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported:
water level 8″ low; channel catfish good on chicken liver and cut baits;
largemouth bass fair on topwater baits early and late in the day; bluegill
fair on worms around brush piles; redear sunfish slow with some success on
small jigs; crappie slow with some success on jigs 2′ under a bobber near
deep water brush.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Montrose Lake
Information: 816-622-0900
Water Surface Temp: 86º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Crappie: Slow Catfish: Slow
All species slow; fishing pressure light.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Schell Lake (Schell-Osage CA)
Information: 660-885-6981
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Fair Crappie: Fair Black Bass: Fair
All other species fair.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Truman Lake
Information: 660-885-6981
Water Surface Temp: 79º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: White Crappie: Fair White Bass: Good Catfish: Good Black Bass:
Good Walleye: Fair
Catfish good on jug lines and cut bait; white crappie good on shad.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Truman Lake Tailwaters
Information: 660-885-6981
Water Surface Temp: 79º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Good Crappie: Slow Catfish: Good
All other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
Missouri River (Kansas City area)
Information: 816-622-0900
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): rising
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported:
catfish slow with some success using bluegill and goldfish; all other species
slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

===============
Northeast Lakes
—————
Henry Sever Lake
Information: 660-785-2420
Water Surface Temp: 84º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Crappie: Good Largemouth Bass: Good Channel Catfish: Fair
crappie good on minnows; largemouth bass good; channel catfish fair; all
other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Hunnewell Lake
Information: 660-785-2420
Water Surface Temp: 76º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Fair Blue Catfish: Fair Largemouth Bass: Good
channel catfish and blue catfish fair using earthworms and cheese bait;
largemouth bass good on Rooster Tails; all other species slow; the lake is
closed to private boats and bait held or transported in containers with water
is prohibited.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Long Branch Lake
Information: 660-785-2420
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Fair Largemouth Bass: Fair
channel catfish fair on stinkbaits and nightcrawlers; largemouth bass fair on
lures; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Mark Twain Lake
Information: 660-785-2420
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Crappie: Good Flathead Catfish: Fair Channel Catfish: Fair
Blue Catfish: Good
crappie good on minnows and jigs; flathead and channel catfish fair on live
baits; blue catfish good on cut shad; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Thomas Hill Reservoir
Information: 660-785-2420
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Good Crappie: Slow
channel catfish (12″-18″) good on setlines using liver and nightcrawlers;
crappie slow but steady on jigs and minnows; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
Mississippi River (upper)
Information: 660-785-2420
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Good Flathead Catfish: Good Blue Catfish:
Fair Freshwater Drum: Good
channel catfish good on cut baits and stinkbaits; flathead catfish good on
live baits; blue catfish fair; freshwater drum good on nightcrawlers; all
other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Salt (below Mark Twain)
Information: 660-785-2420
Water Surface Temp: 75º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Good Freshwater Drum: Good Common Carp: Fair
channel catfish good on prepared baits; freshwater drum good on
nightcrawlers; carp fair on prepared baits; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

===============
Northwest Lakes
—————
Bilby Ranch Lake
Information: 816-271-3100
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Largemouth Bass: Good Channel Catfish: Good
low 80’s, normal, clear; largemouth bass good at low light times of the day
on topwater lures; channel catfish good on chicken liver; all other species
slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Lake Paho
Information: 816-271-3100
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair
77 degrees, 28″ visibility; black bass are hitting on topwater baits at dawn
and dusk and in the grass on plastic worms; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Mozingo Lake
Information: 816-271-3100
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Good Largemouth Bass: Good Crappie: Fair
Bluegill: Fair Walleye: Slow
low 80’s, normal, clear; largemouth bass good; crappie fair over deep brush
and standing timber in coves; bluegill fair; channel catfish good on cut
bait; walleye slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Pony Express Lake
Information: 816-271-3100
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Catfish: Good Largemouth Bass: Good Bluegill: Good
77 degrees, low, clear; largemouth bass fair on topwater lures; catfish good
on cut bait; bluegill good on worms; all other species fair.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Smithville Lake
Information: 816-271-3100
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Crappie: Fair Largemouth Bass: Good White Bass: Fair Catfish:
Good Walleye: Slow
82 degrees, crappie fair in deeper water (8′ – 12′) in the area of
trees/brush piles on minnows; catfish good on cut shad and nightcrawlers;
white bass fair on lake points with shad imitations; walleye slow with some
fish being taken on larger points with nightcrawlers or Rattle Traps;
largemouth bass good with fish being caught in grass/weedy areas.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
Grand River
Information: 816-271-3100
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Blue Catfish: Fair Flathead Catfish: Fair Channel Catfish:
Good Common Carp: Fair
76 degrees, low, muddy; flathead and blue catfish fair on live baits and cut
baits; channel catfish good on stinkbaits and nightcrawlers; common carp fair
on nightcrawlers; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Missouri River (upper)
Information: 816-271-3100
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Flathead Catfish: Good Channel Catfish: Good Blue Catfish:
Fair Common Carp: Good
80 degrees, normal, clear; flathead catfish good on live bait and worms;
channel catfish good on worms and dip baits; blue catfish fair on cut bait
and worms; carp good on worms, fair on corn; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

===============
Ozark Lakes
—————
Bull Shoals Lake (East)
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 82º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair
black bass fair on soft plastic baits.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Norfork Lake
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair White Bass: Fair
black bass fair on topwater lures; white bass fair on soft plastics.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
Big Piney River (lower, Pulaski Co.)
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Northern Rock Bass (Goggle-Eye): Fair
black bass and goggle-eye good on soft plastic baits.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Big Piney River (upper, Texas Co.)
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 71º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported:
all species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Bryant Creek
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Smallmouth Bass: Fair Northern Rock Bass (Goggle-Eye): Fair
smallmouth bass and goggle-eye fair on soft plastics.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Current River
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 74º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported:
all species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Eleven Point River
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 63º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Rainbow Trout: Fair Smallmouth Bass: Fair Northern Rock Bass
(Goggle-Eye): Fair
Blue ribbon trout area, rainbow trout fair on marabou jigs and small
spinners; white ribbon trout area, rainbow trout fair on corn, minnows and
Power Baits; smallmouth bass and goggle-eye fair on soft plastics and live
bait.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Gasconade River (middle)
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 78º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Northern Rock Bass (Goggle-Eye): Good
Freshwater Drum
black bass and goggle-eye good on soft plastic baits; drum good on
nightcrawlers and crayfish.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Gasconade River (upper)
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 78º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported:
all species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Jacks Fork River
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 75º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported:
all species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

North Fork of the White River
Information: 417-256-7161
Water Surface Temp: 68º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Smallmouth Bass: Fair Northern Rock Bass (Goggle-Eye): Fair
smallmouth bass and google-eye fair on soft plastics.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

===============
Southeast Lakes
—————
Clearwater Lake
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 86º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Crappie: Slow White Bass: Fair Bluegill: Slow Largemouth Bass:
Slow Channel Catfish: Slow
white bass fair on crankbaits; crappie slow on red/green tube jigs; all other
species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Council Bluff Lake
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Slow Crappie: Slow Largemouth Bass: Fair Channel
Catfish: Good Bluegill: Slow
channel catfish good on liver after dark; largemouth bass fair on dark
colored soft plastics during low light periods; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Cypress Lake
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 78º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Crappie: Slow Largemouth Bass: Slow Bluegill: Fair Redear
Sunfish: Fair Channel Catfish: Slow
bluegill and redear sunfish fair in 2′ – 3′ depths on jigs, crickets and
worms; crappie slow in 1′ – 3′ depths on minnows and jigs; largemouth bass
slow in 1′ – 3′ depths on minnows, jigs, plastic worms and crankbaits;
channel catfish slow in 2′ – 8′ depths on worms, crickets and stinkbaits.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Duck Creek C.A. Pool #1
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 77º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Largemouth Bass: Good Crappie: Slow Channel Catfish: Fair
Bluegill: Good Redear Sunfish: Good
bluegill and redear sunfish good on crickets; largemouth bass good on
topwater lures and plastic worms; channel catfish fair on chicken livers; all
other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Lake Girardeau
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Largemouth Bass: Fair Bluegill: Slow Crappie: Slow Channel
Catfish: Slow Redear Sunfish: Slow
largemouth bass fair on spinnerbaits, topwater lures and plastic worms; all
other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Perry County Lake
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 85º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Channel Catfish: Fair
channel catfish fair on liver; black bass fair on crankbaits; all other
species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Robert DeLaney Lake
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Bluegill: Fair Channel Catfish: Fair
channel catfish fair on worms and live baits; bluegill fair on jigs and
crickets; all other species slow. NEW CRAPPIE REGULATION: no length limit on
crappie on DeLaney Lake, the daily limit of 15 remains in effect.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Wappapello Lake
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Crappie: Slow Channel Catfish: Fair Bluegill:
Slow
black bass fair on plastic worms and spinnerbaits early and late in the day;
channel catfish fair on live bait and cut bait on jug lines and trotlines at
night; all other species slow. Anglers should note the 9″ minimum length
limit regulation for crappie on Wappapello Lake. Recorded lake level and
other infomation can be received by calling the Wappapello Lake Information
Hotline at 573-222-8139 or 1-877-lake-info.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
Black River (above Clearwater Lake)
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 78º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Slow Bluegill: Slow White Bass: Slow
Smallmouth Bass: Slow Northern Rock Bass (Goggle-Eye): Slow
all species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Black River (below Clearwater Lake)
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 82º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Crappie: Fair Black Bass: Good Channel Catfish: Fair Bluegill:
Fair
black bass good on plastic lures; crappie fair on minnows and assorted jigs;
bluegill fair on live bait; channel catfish fair on nightcrawlers and cut
baits; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Castor River (above Zalma)
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Slow
all species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Mississippi River (Middle)
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Fair Blue Catfish: Fair Flathead Catfish:
Slow
channel catfish and blue catfish fair on worms and cut bait; all other
species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Mississippi River (Ohio River to Arkansas)
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Fair
channel catfish fair on cut baits and worms; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

St. Francis River (above Wappapello Lake)
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Green Sunfish Longear Sunfish Black Bass: Fair Crappie: Fair
Channel Catfish: Good
channel catfish good on cut bait and nightcrawlers; black bass fair on hard
and soft plastic lures; crappie fair on minnows and jigs; all other species
slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

St. Francis River (below Wappapello Lake)
Information: 573-290-5730
Water Surface Temp: 71º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Channel Catfish: Fair Flathead Catfish: Fair Black Bass: Slow
Crappie: Slow
channel catfish fair on pole and line and trotlines with stinkbaits and
chicken liver; flathead catfish fair on trotlines with live bait (small
goldfish or sunfish); all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

===============
Southwest Lakes
—————
Bull Shoals Lake (West)
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 84º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Striped Bass: Fair Crappie: Fair Walleye:
Fair Catfish: Fair
black bass fair on topwater lures, spinnerbaits, soft plastics, jigs and
nightcrawlers; crappie fair on minnows near brush piles; walleye fair on
nightcrawlers; striped bass fair on large jerkbaits and swimbaits; catfish
fair on nightcrawlers; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Lake Taneycomo
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 53º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Rainbow Trout: Good
trout good in upper portion of the lake on white, black and olive marabou
jigs and orange or chartreuse glo balls while drifting downstream with the
current; black/chrome and white/chrome Rooster Tails and Rogues also working
well; trout good in lower portion of the lake on fluorescent orange,
chartreuse, pink/white Power Baits, nightcrawlers and corn.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Pomme de Terre Reservoir
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 80º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Crappie: Good Catfish: Good
crappie good on minnows around structure; black bass good on main lake points
and in shallows early in the day; catfish good on live and cut baits; all
other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Stockton Lake
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 82º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Good Bluegill: Good Walleye: Fair Crappie: Fair
catfish good on shad and nightcrawlers while drifting; bluegill good on
crickets and worms; crappie fair on minnows near deeper brush or standing
trees; walleye fair while trolling with deep crankbaits or jigs tipped with
nightcrawlers.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Table Rock Lake (James River arm)
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 85º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Bluegill: Fair Crappie: Fair Catfish: Fair
black bass good on soft plastic crayfish, use a 3/16 oz. bullet sinker and 2
or 3 point hook, fish in shallow water in the morning and deeper water as the
sun starts to rise; crappie fair on live minnows or small 1/4 oz. jigs, blue
and silver jigs are working well; bluegill fair on small jigs and live worms;
catfish fair on cut shad and live small sunfish, nightcrawlers and chicken
liver also works well; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Table Rock Lake (main lake)
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 81º
Water Level (Range): high
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Walleye: Good Bluegill: Good Catfish: Fair
black bass good on a drop-shot with a purple or watermelon red colored worm;
walleye good on spoons; bluegill good on live worms; catfish fair on goldfish
and cut bluegill in the evening; all other species slow.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
James River
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 82º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Good Catfish: Good Bluegill: Fair Crappie: Fair
black bass good on topwater lures with spooks and buzzbaits, try using a
Carolina rig with soft plastics and nightcrawlers in 25′ – 30′ of water in
the afternoon; white bass good on Rattle Traps in coves, use jigs on flats in
the morning and evening hours; catfish good on minnows and nightcrawlers, try
drifting or use trotlines and limb lines; bluegill fair on worms and crickets
in 6′ – 10′ of water along the banks; crappie fair on jigs and minnows, best
in drop offs and deep channels.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Niangua River
Information: 417-895-6880
Water Surface Temp: 73º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Northern Rock Bass (Goggle-Eye): Fair Rainbow
Trout: Fair
black bass fair on minnows and soft plastics; goggle-eye fair on minnows and
soft plastics; trout good on fluorescent orange and pink colored Power Baits.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

===============
St. Louis Lakes
—————
Busch Memorial Conservation Area Lake 33
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 81º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Bluegill: Fair Catfish: Fair Crappie: Slow
black bass fair on crankbaits; catfish fair on cut bait, doughbaits, blood
baits and livers; bluegill fair on worms; crappie slow on minnows.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Busch Memorial Conservation Area Lakes 3, 4, 5, 7, and 23
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 81º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Good
catfish good on cut bait, doughbait, blood bait and livers.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)
—————
Rivers
—————
Big River
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 82º
Water Level (Range): low
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Fair Black Bass: Slow Crappie: Slow Bluegill: Fair
Catfish fair on cut bait, blood bait and livers; black bass slow on minnows;
crappie slow on minnows; bluegill fair on crickets.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Bourbeuse River
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 78º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Fair Bluegill: Fair Black Bass: Slow Crappie: Slow
catfish fair on cut bait; bluegill good on worms and crickets; all other
species slow.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Meramec River (Crawford Co.)
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 75º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Slow Black Bass: Fair Bluegill: Fair Northern Rock
Bass (Goggle-Eye): Fair Sunfish: Good
Catfish fair on chicken livers; black bass good on plastic worms and
crankbaits; bluegill good on worms and crickets.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Meramec River (St. Louis Co.)
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 78º
Water Level (Range): rising
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Black Bass: Fair Catfish: Fair Bluegill: Fair Crappie: Slow
Catfish fair on cut bait and worms; black bass good on topwater lures;
bluegill good on natural baits.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Mississippi River (St. Louis Region)
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 85º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Slow Freshwater Drum: Good
blue catfish slow on cut bait; channel catfish fair on dip baits; drum good
on worms.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Missouri River (Lower)
Information: 636-441-4554
Water Surface Temp: 83º
Water Level (Range): low
Water Type: muddy
Fish Reported: Catfish: Slow Freshwater Drum: Good
blue catfish slow on cut bait; channel catfish fair on dip baits; drum good
on worms.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

===============
Trout Parks
===============
Bennett Spring State Park
Information: Park 417-532-4418
Water Surface Temp: 54º
Water Level (Range): normal
Water Type: clear
Fish Reported: Rainbow Trout: Good Brown Trout: Fair
Zone 1 and 2 lures that are working well are: black and yellow colored,
gingersnap colored, and pink and white colored marabou jigs; white colored,
and hatchery brown colored glo balls; all tri-colored Rooster Tails;
chartreuse brassie, white floss, blue holographic colored Cracklebacks, brown
midge; Zone 3 baits that are popular are white colored salmon eggs, orange
colored Power Bait, orange trout nuggets regular scent. August fishing hours
are from 7:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. We will be cutting weeds on August 6 and
7. We will begin by 8:00 a.m. and finish around 3:00 p.m. each day. Thank you
for you patience.
(Reported on: 7/31/13)

Maramec Spring Park
Information: 573-265-7801
Water Surface Temp: 57º
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Rainbow Trout: Fair Brown Trout: Slow
Fishing is fair, the spring branch has good flow and the water is ultra
clear, remember to use light weight line and tackle; fish are holding in deep
areas, below swift water and near submerged habitat, target these areas for
best success; rubber legged jigs in black/white, green/yellow and brown are
working well in the afternoon hours; feather jigs in black and white, brown
and yellow colors are producing good numbers of fish; trout worms in orange,
white, green and yellow are good choices; fishing hours for the month of
August are 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Women’s Free Fishing Day is Saturday,
September 14th. For more information call 573-265-7801.
(Reported on: 7/29/13)

Montauk State Park
Information: 573-548-2585
Water Surface Temp: 59º
Water Level (Range): -none-
Water Type: -none-
Fish Reported: Rainbow Trout: Good
The river level is normal, standing at 2.02′ at the lower park boundary, the
water is clear, 2 lb. test fishing line or lighter is recommended; fishing is
good on most baits; white, brown and yellow scented dough and putty baits are
working well in the bait zones; most flies, Rooster Tails and jigs in black
and yellow, olive colors and other dark colors are working well, some colors
work better at different times of the day; the best fishing is in the
mornings and evenings, especially on warmer days. August fishing hours are
7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. For up-to-date stream conditions check
http://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/uv?07064440
(Reported on: 7/30/13)

Roaring River State Park
Information: 417-847-2430
Water Surface Temp: 58º
Water Level (Range): falling
Water Type: dingy
Fish Reported: Rainbow Trout: Good
The water is still low and clear, making for some really good dry fly
fishing, still getting the trout on hoppers, beetles, ants and Cracklebacks;
small crickets and wooly worms are still pretty good; Adams, Lt. Cahills,
renegades, caddis, blue wing olives and tricos are all still working well;
good nymphs right now would be the pheasant tail nymph, the zebra midge,
burlaps, copper johns and small brassies; olive, black, dark brown and ginger
wooly buggers are all working well right now; with the low water it is
important to use 9′ leaders that are 2 lb. (7X) these work well right now; if
you are spin fishing, 2 lb. Maxima or P-line works well right now; if you are
fishing jigs, the black/yellow, dark olive, dark brown, green/yellow,
red/orange and the white have all been working; plastics are always a good
choice, white, brown, orange, fluorescent yellow and pink eggs have been
good; worms in black/yellow, John Deere green, electric chicken, cheese,
orange/white and the cream colors have all been good the past few weeks; in
Zone 3 nightcrawlers, yellow Power Bait paste and corn has all been working.
(Reported on: 7/30/13)
Trout Notice
=============== Summer 2013 Advisory
Due to the record number of flood events (six total) in spring, rainbow trout
growth-rates at Department?s Montauk Hatchery near Licking have slowed during
the late spring and early summer. Reduced growth rates are a response to the
warmer, more turbid water conditions associated with flooding. As a result,
anglers will notice a small and temporary reduction in the length of fish
stocked at Montauk State Park and at Maramec Trout Park near St. James. With
improving conditions, the size of fish stocked should return to normal
lengths during August. Thanks to recent hatchery improvements and the hard
work and dedication of staff at Montauk, the impacts to anglers will be
minimal and short term.

Fish Management Notice
=============== Trout Stocking
The Conservation Department stocks trout in each of the trout parks every
evening from the day before the March 1 opener through Oct. 30. Tag sale
estimates determine a daily stocking rate average of 2.25 fish per expected
angler. Except on opening day, three fish are stocked for every expected
angler. From March 1 to Oct. 31, the parks will collectively sell more than
400,000 tags and stock more than 900,000 fish. These fish will average about
12 inches long over the season, but some variation occurs. Dozens of lunkers
weighing upwards of 3 pounds are stocked each year. A few tip the scales at
more than 10 pounds.

Bass Fishing Tips

Bass Fishing Tips – Building Confidence in a Lure can be a Double Edged Sword

By Marc Rogers

Often times it is said you need to build confidence in a particular lure. The only way to do this is by using a lure regularly. There are both advantages and disadvantages to regular use of a lure when gaining said confidence.

Regular use of a lure allows you to become proficient with the lure. You will gain knowledge about the lure capabilities and learn how to use it during different conditions. Many years ago, the first lure I learned to use proficiently was a plastic worm. Specifically, a Texas rigged plastic worm, and it took me a couple of years to learn plastic worms were not productive under all the conditions I faced while on the water. While a Texas rigged worm is quite versatile and productive, I was using them most of the time while on the water. When using different offerings, I was not as attentive with a plastic worm due to the confidence I had developed in the worm. This lack of attention reduced my ability to develop confidence in other lures.

There are times when a pattern can be found to take advantage of using a favorite lure. When fishing on large bodies of water, you can locate areas where your favorite offerings are productive. However, doing so will reduce your chances of having a successful day on the water. You will spend a lot of time searching for areas where your one-dimensional technique will work well.

Confidence baits will keep you focused on the details of the under water world below. These favorite lures will get you excited about catching fish during the day ahead of you and are a great starting point for your day on the water. Keying on the same lure every time out, however, will discourage your ability to become a versatile angler. I discovered this when my go-to lure was a plastic worm and I was getting beat by anglers fishing crankbaits. To break this cycle, during several successive fishing outings, I removed all of my tackle from my boat except crankbaits. Armed with just three rod and reels designed for presenting crankbaits forced me to improve my crankbait skills or go home.

Intentionally subjecting myself to this situation was difficult at first but provided a great lesson on how to become a more versatile angler. Having limited lure choices forced me to pay closer attention to catching fish with crankbaits. I am still not an expert with these lures, but I have gained the confidence needed when crankbaits provide the most productive patterns. Had I not had the discipline to take drastic measures to break the habits of only utilizing plastic worms, I would have remained a one-dimensional angler.

This situation also provided me with a lesson on fishing plastic worms using only the Texas rig. I realized my use of plastic worms reduced my ability to be versatile with them as well. Plastic worms are themselves a versatile lure. They can be presented at any depth in the water column, dragged slowly along the bottom using no added weight, flipped and pitched into heavy cover and used as an alternative to traditional topwater presentation. I discovered my plastic worm use was also one-dimensional.

Beginners are most susceptible to being caught up in using just one lure for most or all conditions. If you are a beginner, the situation generally plays out the following way. You have had little success catching fish with artificial lures. You are invited to fish with another angler, he/she convinces you to try a certain lure, and you have a successful day on the water. This single outing creates enough confidence for you in that particular lure, and you use it every time you fish from that day forward. You will still catch a few fish on less productive days using it and if you do not catch anything, you decide the fish were not biting on that day.

While the scenario is difficult to avoid, you should avoid it at all costs. Many professional anglers become known for their favorite lure. When conditions are perfect for their favorite, they many times win or place high in the standings on tournament days. However, do not allow yourself to believe their favorite is the only lure they are proficient using. A professional angler did not reach the ranks of the best anglers by not being versatile. They are good with most lure categories and excel when conditions allow their favorite offerings to be the most beneficial to use.

There is nothing wrong with finding your favorite lure and using it when conditions are right. However, if you limit your offerings because you are comfortable with a particular offering, you are limiting your ability as an angler. Versatility is still the key to experiencing many successful days on the water.
mft-logo

Lake of the Ozarks Dock Fishing

Docks Harbor Lake of the Ozarks Bass

by John Neporadny Jr.

At first glance, the Lake of the Ozarks in central Missouri resembles more of a pleasure boating paradise than a productive bass fishery. But beneath the countless docks harboring off-shore racing boats, personal watercrafts and runabouts lurk schools of black bass.

When construction of the lake’s Bagnell Dam began in 1929, Work Projects Administration (WPA) employees cleared the timber from the areas that would eventually flood. This left the lake devoid of natural cover for fish, but housing development around the lake created new shelters for bass. “One thing that stands out is the amount of docks we have,” says Chad Brauer, who followed in his father’s footsteps by guiding on the Lake of the Ozarks before touring on the BASSMASTER Tournament Trail. ” Lake of the Ozarks has more docks than any lake I’ve fished in the United States. It provides probably more cover for bass to hide under than any other lake in Missouri including Truman and some of the other lakes that have standing timber because docks provide a lot more shade and cover than a tree does.”

Brauer believes this abundance of man-made cover makes his home reservoir one of the top three bass lakes in the state along with Table Rock and Truman. “I definitely rank it among the top 20 in the United States for overall quality and consistency,” says Brauer. “I’ve fished places that have a lot more bigger fish but I’ve fished a lot of places where you don’t catch the 3- to 5- pounders that you catch here.”

The bass population might change some over the years but the techniques for catching bass on Lake of the Ozarks remain about the same. “There are patterns that have remained pretty consistent year after year and a lot of that has to do with the amount of docks we have,” says Brauer. “That’s a pattern in itself. No matter what time of year you’re fishing or what the weather conditions are, you can always fish docks and catch some bass.”

Other structure and cover also produce good bass fishing at times. “Since we have a huge population of Kentuckies, when the fishing gets extremely tough, you can go down a bluff, down-size your bait and
catch spotted bass year-round,” Brauer suggests. Bass also key on the lake’s rocky bottom, especially the pea gravel in the spring, chunk rocks in the early spring or bluff walls in the winter. the lake’s upper ends also have lay-down logs that hold bass in the shallows. “The big secret on Lake of the Ozarks is the man-made cover–all the brush piles,” Brauer discloses. “It takes a lot of time to learn where they are, but once you’ve found them you’ve found fish.”

This 54,000-acre reservoir can be divided into at least three distinct sections. The lower end close to the dam resembles a typical highland reservoir with deep, clear water. As you move to the mid-lake
area, this section still has steep banks, but the water color becomes stained. You encounter typical river conditions of shallower, dirty water and lay-downs strewn along the banks as you run farther up the
Osage and Niangua arms.

March is Brauer’s prime month for catching heavyweight bass since the fish move shallow during the pre-spawn. “Once you key on where the fish are you can pretty much follow them all the way through
the spawn,” says Brauer who also rates March and April as the prime months for catching good numbers of bass. During the pre-spawn, Brauer pitches a jig and plastic chunk along 45-degree chunk rock banks. As the water continues to warm, the fish migrate to pea gravel banks to build nests. Brauer keys on the back sides of docks where walkways and pillars provided shade and protection for spawning bass. His favorite lures during this time are a spinnerbait or crankbait for the most active fish and a jig or plastic worm when bass want a slower presentation.

Most bass have finished spawning by the end of May, so Brauer starts following the fish out towards the end of the docks where they suspend 3 to 5 feet deep under the foam of the floating structure. Effective lures for this post-spawn pattern include Zara Spooks and soft plastic jerkbaits.

Heavy recreational boat traffic limits bass fishing to a nocturnal activity throughout the summer, but some good daytime action returns in the fall. “What you’re doing then is looking for shad,” says Brauer
“When you find the shad you can find the bass as well as all the other species such as white bass and hybrids.”

In early fall, bass move out of the deep brush and suspend under the foam of docks again. A productive pattern during this time is to locate baitfish near the docks and then run a buzz bait, Zara Spook or jerkbait along the dock’s sides. As the water cools down in late fall, the baitfish and bass migrate to the backs of creeks where they can be found on the back sides of shallow docks.

With all those docks floating overhead, Lake of the Ozarks bass have plenty of places to reside year-round.

For information on lodging and other facilities at the Lake of the Ozarks or to receive a free vacation guide, call the Lake of the Ozarks Convention & Visitors Bureau at 1-800-FUN-LAKE or visit the Lake of the Ozarks Convention and Visitors Bureau web site at funlake.com.

Copies of John Neporadny’s book, “THE Lake of the Ozarks Fishing Guide” are available by calling 573/365-4296 or visiting the web site www.jnoutdoors.com.

Reprinted with permission from Bassmaster Magazine.

Table Rock Lake Fishing Report

Table Rock Lake Fishing Report July 4-7, 2013

Table Rock Lake Fishing Report

Water – Clear, could see bottom at 10 feet deep.

Temp – 81-83 degrees

Area – Main Lake near Indian Point

Boat traffic was heavy for the holiday weekend. Spotted bass were holding on main lake points at 20-40 feet deep and caught on drop shot finesse worms and four inch curl tail grubs. Watermelon Seed, Green Pumpkin and smoke were most productive color. Also caught spotted bass suspended on the highway 86 bridge holding very close to the concrete at 20-30 feet deep using same technique. I did take a few spotted bass during the daylight holding above brush piles in 20-30 feet but most of these were 12-14″.

Due to heavy daytime boat traffic I fished each day from 7:00pm until well after midnight and did quite well catching smallmouth. A couple dozen smallies each night were caught on Midwest Custom Tackle Football Jigs in PB&J and black/blue. The PB&J was most productive during low light before dark and the black/blue proved most effective after dark. The smallies were located on main lake points and on the sides going into creek arms up to about 100 yards. They were holding in pole timber and submerged cedar trees in 15-25 feet deep.

The jigs had to be worked very slowly to get bit. The bite was very light and sometimes difficult to detect – just a heavy feeling on the line. Caught mostly keepers (15″) with a few up to 20″. I only caught smallies after dark each day, the largemouth were not hitting the jig and the spotted bass did not seam to be relating to the bottom like the smallies were.

Early morning at daylight there was some limited topwater action but it did not last long. A mixed bag of largemouth, spotted and smallmouth were hitting poppers from about 5:30am – 6:30am. The topwater bite was mostly smaller fish with only a couple of keepers each day.

Livingston Lures Sponsor Joe Bass Team Trail

For Immediate Release

Livingston Lures Sponsor Joe Bass

June 26, 2013

San Antonio, Tex. – Livingston Lures, makers of the most advanced hard baits on the market, has become the exclusive crankbait sponsor for the Joe Bass Team trail. The sponsorship agreement includes the 2013 Joe Bass tournament season, which culminates with their championship on Lake of the Ozarks, October 26th and 27th.

In their fifth year, the Joe Bass team tournament circuit includes trails in Missouri, Oklahoma and Arkansas. Bob Capps, Director of the Joe Bass tournament circuit stated, “We are happy to have Livingston Lures as our exclusive crankbait sponsor for the 2013 season. Livingston Lures is creating innovative products that will help our grass roots level anglers catch more fish. We are looking forward to weighing many fish at our tournaments this year that are caught on Livingston Lures.”

Livingston Lures offers a full line up of hard baits that feature proprietary sound and vibration technology built into them. Not only do they look good with proven design and actions, but the sound and vibrations call the fish to the lure and generate a striking response. These are the tools many pros have started using in their arsenal of equipment to help them catch more fish. Livingston Lures’ Basil Battah explained the company’s strategy, “We have been working with the top level bass anglers all year, but we know the team and weekend angler is what makes up the heart of this industry. By sponsoring the Joe Bass Team Trail we are helping support those anglers and the tournaments they fish.”

For more information about Livingston Lures please visit – https://www.livingstonlures.com/

For more information about the Joe Bass Team trail please visit – http://joebassteamtrail.com/

Bass Fishing at Night on Lake of the Ozarks

Night Light Lake of the Ozarks Largemouth

By John Neporadny Jr.

The heat and humidity of a summer day in Missouri make fishing a survival test rather than a relaxing time on the water.

Combine the steamy weather and searing sun with rolling waves from an armada of pleasure boaters and your fishing day becomes a hot and frustrating experience. The heat, sun and boat traffic must have about the same affect on largemouth bass as well, because the fish seem reluctant to bite on busy Lake of the Ozarks during a summer day.

All is not lost though if you want to catch bass during your summer vacation at one at the lake. Changing your fishing time schedule to take advantage of the night life of Lake of the Ozarks allows you to avoid the heat and recreational boat traffic and experience the best bass action of the summertime.

Everything changes for the better once the sun sets on the lake. The air cools down, the pleasure boats disappear and the bass become more aggressive in the low-light conditions. Now’s the prime time to be casting to your favorite bass spot even if you can’t see it.

Limited visibility can make night fishing hazardous, but you can make it a pleasurable experience by taking some precautions and carrying the proper equipment. Missouri state law requires that any fishing boat when underway must exhibit red and green sidelights that are visible for at least one mile on a dark clear night. The boat must also have an all-around white stern light that is visible for at least two miles on a dark clear night. All boats are required to use a white light visible from all directions whenever the vessel is anchored between sunset and sunrise.

The best way to minimize navigation problems after dark is to scout the areas you plan to fish a couple of hours before sunset. Use your electronics to determine the structure and depth you will fish that night. Ideal summertime structure to look for on the lake includes drop-offs and river or creek channels. Sunken brush piles at depths of 10 feet or deeper make ideal starting points for a night trip.

While scouting spots in the daylight, look for familiar landmarks on the bank that you will be able to find again after dark. Plan a milk run of spots and pay close attention to the route you take to each spot so it will be easier to find your way around once the sun sets. Starting at your favorite spot at sunset is another way to minimize your nocturnal movements.

Special equipment you should use for nighttime tactics include flashlights and a black light that you can position on the bow of your boat. Using a black light and high visibility line in blue fluorescent or solar green hues makes strikes easier to detect since the black light illuminates your line and makes it look like a laser beam shooting through the inky darkness. Flashlights or headlamps are handy for finding tackle in the boat or tying knots. Carrying insect repellent in your boat is also recommended because mosquitoes can ruin your nocturnal outing if you leave your skin unprotected. I usually wear long pants and long-sleeve shirts to deter the mosquitoes as well.

A bunch of tackleboxes and rods and reels strewn out all over the boat’s deck after dark can result in broken tackle or a quick trip overboard. So keep your boat deck clean and prevent any mishaps by picking a handful of productive lures for nocturnal bass. Minimize your lure choices to plastic worms, soft plastic creature baits, jigs and plastic trailers and spinnerbaits for your nighttime trip. Before darkness sets in, you should have your boat organized with plenty of walking space available and lights positioned in strategic locations.

A moonlit night increases your visibility, but it isn’t a necessity for catching nocturnal bass. I’ve caught bass at night in the rain and in the moonlight. The type of day probably affects the night fishing more than the nighttime weather. If the day has been cloudy or rainy, the best fishing sometimes occurs during the late evening or the first couple of hours after sunset. If there has been a few weeks of real hot weather with nothing but sunshine and bluebird skies, the fish tend to bite all night long on some reservoirs.

Heavy boat traffic makes the lake nearly impossible to fish during a summer day, yet it is probably one of the best lakes to fish at night. Lights from hundreds of docks and heavily developed shoreline makes it easy to see and navigate after dark and a plethora of sunken brush piles provide plenty of nocturnal haunts for bass.

In the middle of summer, Skip Surbaugh of Lake of the Ozarks Guide Service, targets brush piles he has planted on the lower end of the lake from the dam to the Lodge of the Four Seasons. “I probably don’t fish as deep of brush piles as a lot of guys do,” admits Surbaugh. “I fish brush piles from 10 to 15 feet generally located close to deep water (channel drops of 25 to 40 feet).

On calm nights, Surbaugh opts for dark-colored 10-inch Berkley Power Worms or 5-inch Berkley Power Hawgs that he Texas rigs with a 5/8-ounce weight. “I want the weight heavy enough that I can get the bait down into the bottom of the brush piles, so I work it real slow in the brush,” describes Surbaugh. “I like to hit every limb as I am bringing it out.”

If the wind blows at night, Surbaugh switches to a black 3/4-ounce spinnerbait with a number 7 or 8 gold or black Colorado blade. He throws all of his nighttime lures on 15-pound test line.

The guide believes the key to successful night fishing at Lake of the Ozarks is to make a milk run of brush piles rather than counting on one brush pile to produce several keepers. The night action here produces plenty of bass in the 5- to 6-pound range. “We actually catch some of our bigger fish at night than we do during the day,” says Surbaugh. “This lake right now is loaded with 4- to 5-pound fish.”
The night life was good for Surbaugh’s clients last summer. “We would catch about 15 to 20 fish a night with about two-thirds of them being keepers,” says Surbaugh. “There were lots of nights last year where we were catching 30 to 40 fish a night with 20 keepers.”

When the sun sets and the air cools, take a break from the summer heat and enjoy the bass fishing night life at the lake.

For information on lodging and other facilities at the Lake of the Ozarks or to receive a free vacation guide, call the Lake of the Ozarks Convention & Visitors Bureau at 1-800-FUN-LAKE or visit the Lake of the Ozarks Convention and Visitors Bureau web site at funlake.com.

Copies of John Neporadny’s book, “THE Lake of the Ozarks Fishing Guide” are available by calling 573/365-4296 or visiting the web site www.jnoutdoors.com.

Rookie Pro Casey Martin Wins FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga

Rookie Martin Wins Walmart FLW Tour At Lake Chickamauga Presented By Chevy

30.Jun.2013

DAYTON, Tenn. – Rookie pro Casey Martin of New Hope, Ala., brought the biggest stringer of the tournament to the scales Sunday, a five-bass limit weighing 30 pounds, 1 ounce to win $125,500 at the Walmart FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Chevy. Martin’s four-day catch of 20 bass weighing 103-3 is the second-largest stringer ever weighed in FLW Tour competition.

The four-day catch gave Martin the win by a stunning 22-pound, 11-ounce margin over Walmart pro Wesley Strader of Spring City, Tenn., who caught a total of 20 bass weighing 80-8, earning $33,287. It was the second-largest margin of victory in FLW Tour history.

“Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I could win,” said Martin, who earned his first career victory on the FLW Tour as a pro. “Every night I went to sleep thinking that I was going to stumble, or run out of fish. I really managed my fish well this week, and I think that was my key to winning.”

Martin said his main bait this week was a five-arm Picasso Bait Ball Extreme umbrella rig. He modified it so that it consisted of 3 hooks and 10 dummy-heads. Martin rigged Strike King Shadalicious swimbaits and Zoom Swimmin’ Super Flukes on the umbrella rig. Twelve of the 20 bass that Martin weighed in came on the Bait Ball. Five bass came on Martin’s drop-shot rig with a green pumpkin-colored Roboworm, and he also caught fish on an Ozark Special-colored ¾-ounce Omega Custom Tackle Football Head jig and Castaic Jerky J swimbait.

“For whatever reason, those fish really wanted that Picasso Bait Ball Extreme on day two,” Martin continued. “Guys all around me were throwing umbrella rigs, but I was the only one who was catching them.”

Casey had two main areas that produced for him during the tournament. One he dubbed the “mega-school” where he would catch a solid limit each day, and the second he dubbed his “big-fish spot” which he would sneak to and upgrade.

“The mega school was on a giant ledge, from 15 to 25 feet deep,” Martin said. “I found it on the final day of practice. There was a little turn on it where the fish would just stack up and suspend. I’d go there and get a solid limit, and then sneak into the big fish area when no one was looking.”

Martin described his big fish area as a long point that separated two spawning bays. He said that the big fish were funneling out each day.

“I knew there weren’t many in there, but I knew that if I did get a bite, it was going to weigh between 4 and 8 pounds,” Martin said.

“It’s been a crazy year,” Martin went on to say. “I didn’t even think that I was going to make the Forrest Wood Cup coming into this event. I was never really comfortable at all today. I saw Michael Neal weigh in a 40-pound bag earlier this year, so I just kept going. I went from having an average season to an unbelievable season real quick.”

Martin is the star of FLW’s Internet reality show “Circuit Breaker” which can be viewed at FLW’s YouTube channel. “Circuit Breaker” follows Martin at every FLW Tour stop and documents the rookie’s ups and downs during his first season fishing the FLW Tour.

The top 10 pros finished the tournament in:

1st: Casey Martin, New Hope, Ala., 20 bass, 103-3, $125,500

2nd: Walmart pro Wesley Strader, Spring City, Tenn., 20 bass, 80-8, $33,287

3rd: Michael Neal, Dayton, Tenn., 20 bass, 79-13, $28,520

4th: Dan Morehead, Paducah, Ky., 20 bass, 77-2, $23,753

5th: Andy Morgan, Dayton, Tenn., 20 bass, 73-8, $18,987

6th: M&M’s pro Jim Moynagh, Carver, Minn., 20 bass, 71-14, $16,127

7th: Chevy pro Larry Nixon, Bee Branch, Ark., 20 bass, 71-6, $15,173

8th: Tom Redington, Royse City, Texas, 20 bass, 68-14, $14,220

9th: Chevy pro Luke Clausen, Spokane, Wash., 20 bass, 68-9, $13,267

10th: Todd Auten, Lake Wylie, S.C., 20 bass, 65-15, $12,313

A complete list of results can be found at FLWOutdoors.com.

Overall there were 50 bass weighing 187 pounds, 9 ounces caught by pros Sunday. All of the final 10 pros caught five-bass limits.

Andy Morgan of Dayton, Tenn., wrapped up his season-long quest for the Walmart FLW Tour Angler of the Year title presented by Kellogg’s in front of his hometown crowd. Morgan’s tournament finish of 7th place on Sunday clinched the first Angler of the Year title of his career after finishing in the top 10 in each of the last seven FLW Tour seasons. Morgan, who received $100,000 for the title, also will receive an automatic berth into the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup.

Drew Benton of Panama City, Fla., was awarded the 2013 FLW Tour Rookie of the Year award, which is awarded to the rookie pro angler who finishes the season with the highest point total.

Jerry Reagan of Byrdstown, Tenn., won the co-angler division and $25,000 Saturday with a three-day total of 15 bass weighing 46 pounds, 12 ounces, followed by Kenny Beale Jr. of Blairs, Va., in second place with 12 bass weighing 38 pounds, 13 ounces worth $7,134.

Co-angler Richard Peek of Centre, Ala., clinched the 2013 Walmart FLW Tour Co-Angler of the Year presented by Kellogg’s title with his 31st-place finish. For winning the prestigious title, Peek earned a new Ranger Z518 with a 200-horsepower Evinrude or Mercury outboard plus an automatic berth into the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup.

Coverage of the Lake Chickamauga tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network when “FLW” airs Aug. 4 from 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. ET. The Emmy-nominated “FLW” television show is hosted by Jason Harper and is broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world.

The Tour stop on Lake Chickamauga presented by Chevy was hosted by the City of Dayton and the Rhea County EDC and was the sixth and final event of the Walmart FLW Tour’s 2013 season. The 2013 Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart will be the next tournament and will be held Aug. 15-18 at the Red River and Shreveport, La. The event will be hosted by the Shreveport/Bossier Sports Commission. Boats will launch from the Red River South Marina in Bossier City, La. Coverage of the Forrest Wood Cup will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on NBC when “FLW” airs Sept. 29 from 2:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. ET. For a complete schedule, visit FLWOutdoors.com.

For complete details and updated information visit FLWOutdoors.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing.

Casey Martin Leads FLW Tour At Lake Chickamauga

Martin Continues To Lead Walmart FLW Tour At Lake Chickamauga Presented By Chevy

29.Jun.2013

DAYTON, Tenn. – Rookie pro Casey Martin of New Hope, Ala., maintained his lead at the Walmart FLW Tour at Lake Chickamauga presented by Chevy Saturday by bringing a five-bass limit to the scales that weighed 23 pounds, 3 ounces. Martin’s three-day total of 15 bass for 73-2 gives him a substantial lead over hard-charging local Michael Neal of Dayton, Tenn., who brought five bass to the scales weighing 22-8. Neal’s three-day total of 62-12 puts him 10 pounds, 6 ounces shy of Martin heading into the final day of competition in the tournament that features the world’s best bass-fishing anglers competing for the top cash award of up to $125,000.

“They’re getting real hard to catch,” said Martin, whose only previous top-10 finish as a pro on the FLW Tour came at Lake Okeechobee in the first event of this season. “I think that the fish are getting used to what I’ve been giving them. I’m still seeing them on my graph – they’re still there. It’s getting tougher to make them bite.”

Martin returned to his big school of bass that he has fished all week on Saturday, but was forced to switch to a spinning rod after a tough morning.

“The big switch for me was moving to the drop-shot rig,” Martin said. “That seemed to be what they wanted today.”

Martin said his drop-shot rig consisted of a green pumpkin-colored Roboworm on 10-pound-test Seaguar Invizx line. He said that four of his fish that he weighed in came via the drop-shot rig, including his 7-pound kicker bass. He also weighed in one bass on a Picasso School-E-Rig, which he threw rigged with Gene Larew Sweet Swimmers and Strike King Shadalicious swimbaits.

“I don’t have a whole lot else to go with,” Martin continued. “Tomorrow, I might stay there all day and end up going down with them. I’ve got one other spot that I can hit intermittently, but I’m going to stick with the school that got me here.

“Two things can happen to me tomorrow. Either I am going to win, or I’m not. That’s it. I’m not going to change up and go look to catch 10 pounds on the docks. I’m going to have a lot of different gear tied on tomorrow, and I’m shooting for the win.”

Martin is the star of FLW’s Internet reality show “Circuit Breaker” which can be viewed at FLW’s YouTube channel. “Circuit Breaker” follows Martin at every FLW Tour stop and documents the rookie’s ups and downs during his first season fishing the FLW Tour.

The top 10 pros advancing to the final day of competition on Lake Chickamauga are:

1st: Casey Martin, New Hope, Ala., 15 bass, 73-2

2nd: Michael Neal, Dayton, Tenn., 15 bass, 62-12

3rd: Walmart pro Wesley Strader, Spring City, Tenn., 15 bass, 58-4

4th: M&M’s pro Jim Moynagh, Carver, Minn., 15 bass, 55-15

5th: Chevy pro Larry Nixon, Bee Branch, Ark., 15 bass, 55-5

6th: Dan Morehead, Paducah, Ky., 15 bass, 54-0

7th: Andy Morgan, Dayton, Tenn., 15 bass, 54-0

8th: Chevy pro Luke Clausen, Spokane, Wash., 15 bass, 53-13

9th: Todd Auten, Lake Wylie, S.C., 15 bass, 53-3

10th: Tom Redington, Royse City, Texas, 15 bass, 52-13

Finishing in 11th through 20th are:

11th: Cheez-It pro Shinichi Fukae, Palestine, Texas, 15 bass, 52-10, $11,837

12th: Scott Martin, Clewiston, Fla., 15 bass, 51-12, $11,837

13th: Clark Wendlandt, Leander, Texas, 15 bass, 51-5, $11,837

14th: Ken Golub, Pittsford, N.Y., 15 bass, 51-2, $11,837

15th: Justin Lucas, Guntersville, Ala., 15 bass, 50-2, $11,837

16th: Rayovac pro Jason Christie, Park Hill, Okla., 15 bass, 49-12, $11,360

17th: Matt Arey, Shelby, N.C., 15 bass, 49-12, $11,360

18th: John Voyles, Petersburg, Ind., 15 bass, 49-11, $11,360

19th: Ray Meredith, Smiths Grove, Ky., 13 bass, 43-8, $11,360

20th: Cody Meyer, Auburn, Calif., 15 bass, 43-1, $11,360

Final results for the remaining field can be found at FLWOutdoors.com.

Overall there were 98 bass weighing 327 pounds, 14 ounces caught by pros Saturday. The catch included 19 five-bass limits.

Pros are competing for a top award of up to $125,000 this week plus valuable points in the hope of qualifying for the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart, the world championship of bass fishing. The top 35 anglers in the point standings from the six events on the 2013 Walmart FLW Tour will qualify. The 2013 Forrest Wood Cup will be in Shreveport, La., Aug. 15-18 on the Red River. Coverage of the Forrest Wood Cup will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on NBC when “FLW” airs Sept. 29 from 2:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. ET.

Jerry Reagan of Byrdstown, Tenn., won the co-angler division and $25,000 Saturday with a three-day total of 15 bass weighing 46 pounds, 12 ounces, followed by Kenny Beale Jr. of Blairs, Va., in second place with 12 bass weighing 38 pounds, 13 ounces worth $7,134.

“I had to hustle this week,” said Reagan, who will fish the third Forrest Wood Cup of his career as a co-angler this season. “I drew three great pros. Chris Baumgardner on day one is just a great guy to fish with. Friday, I drew a guy I knew from back home, John Devere. I was familiar with John’s style of fishing, and that played to my advantage. I drew Casey Martin today, and he is on a big school of fish.”

Reagan said that he caught most of his fish on day one on a Zoom Speed Worm. On day two, he switched to a shaky-head rig and caught the largest stringer of the day in the co-angler division. On the third day of competition, Reagan opted for a drop-shot rig and slammed the door on the first FLW victory of his career.

“This has been a long time coming,” Reagan said. “I’ve always wanted to fish on the pro side. I don’t have any grandiose delusions about competing against these pros. Most of them are far, far better than I. But, I’m not getting any younger. I’m going to take this win as a sign, and I plan on making the jump over to the pro side next year.”

The top 10 co-anglers finished:

1st: Jerry Reagan, Byrdstown, Tenn., 15 bass, 46-12, $25,000

2nd: Kenny Beale Jr., Blairs, Va., 12 bass, 38-13, $7,134

3rd: Shane Winchester, Glasgow, Ky., 13 bass, 38-7, 4,750

4th: Nick Hensley, Cumming, Ga., 14 bass, 37-1, $3,797

5th: Nick Loeffelman Jr., Valles Mines, Mo., 13 bass, 36-14, $2,844

6th: Wesley Watson, Bracey, Va., 13 bass, 35-1, $2,367

7th: Dustin Evans, Eads, Tenn., 12 bass, 34-8, $1,890

8th: Glenn Day, Cumming, Ga., 13 bass, 34-2, $1,700

9th: Andrew Owens, Dividing Creek, N.J., 15 bass, 33-10, $1,604

10th: Josh Smith, Hamilton, Ohio, 11 bass, 32-14, $1,509

For a full list of results visit FLWOutdoors.com.

Overall there were 70 bass weighing 187 pounds, 12 ounces caught by co-anglers Saturday. The catch included nine five-bass limits.

In addition to the top award of $25,000, co-anglers were also fishing this week for valuable points that would help them qualify for the 2013 Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart. The top 35 co-anglers in the point standings from the six events on the 2013 Walmart FLW Tour have qualified.

The top 10 pros will take off from the Dayton Boat Dock located at 175 Lakeshore Drive in Dayton at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday. Sunday’s final weigh-in will be held at the Walmart located at 3034 Rhea County Highway in Dayton beginning at 4 p.m.

Fans will also be treated to the FLW Outdoors Expo at the Walmart on Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. prior to the final weigh-ins. The Expo includes Ranger boat simulators, the opportunity to interact with professional anglers, enjoy interactive games, activities and giveaways provided by sponsors, and fans can learn more about the sport of fishing and other outdoor activities. All activities are free and open to the public. Also on Sunday, country music artist Dylan Scott will perform a free live concert on the Walmart weigh-in stage at 3 p.m.

Coverage of the Lake Chickamauga tournament will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) on NBC Sports Network when “FLW” airs Aug. 4 from 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. ET. The Emmy-nominated “FLW” television show is hosted by Jason Harper and is broadcast to more than 564 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world.

For complete details and updated information visit FLWOutdoors.com. For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing

Bass Fishing Indiana’s Patoka Lake

By Marc Rogers

The Army Corp of Engineers completed Patoka Lake in 1978. It is the second largest reservoir in Indiana containing 8,880 surface acres of water at normal summer pool. At normal summer pool it has a maximum depth of 52 feet and an average depth of 22 feet. The Army Corp of Engineers controls the lake’s water level with a spillway for flood control purposes. The lake also provides drinking water for the surrounding areas. Patoka Lake is located approximately 10 miles from French Lick, Indiana.

Patoka Lake was formed by the impoundment of the Patoka River and there are 11 named and unnamed tributaries throughout the lake. The dam is located at the west side of the reservoir. The normal summer pool level is 536 feet above mean sea level. This level is normally stable but can fluctuate between 506 and 548 feet above mean level. The Army Corp of Engineers control over 17,000 acres of land surrounding the lake. The land is leased to the State of Indiana and managed for recreational purposes including hiking, hunting, camping and fishing. Most of the shoreline is wooded and there is little development close to the water.

The lake receives heavy fishing and boating pressure. Therefore, some areas are posted with skiing restrictions and speed limits. The areas are clearly marked with buoys. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources close some areas of the lake during waterfowl hunting seasons because they are designated as nesting areas. The areas include portions of the Patoka River arm, Little Patoka River and Lick Creek arms. Bald Eagles have been known to use the area around the lake for nesting and these areas are also posted as restricted areas.

During construction many trees were left uncut around the shoreline in most of the tributaries. This has left many large areas of standing timber in the lake but boat lanes were made for navigation into the main lake area. Patoka Lake is a lowland lake with the bottom consisting of mainly mud and clay. There are areas where the bottom is gravel and rock near some of the channel bends as the wave action has washed away the mud and clay. There are still many areas of deep water where stumps and broken limestone can be found. These are areas where anglers should concentrate when fishing the deeper water of the lake.

The dominant fish specie in Patoka Lake is the Largemouth Bass. The lake also has a good population of Bluegill and Redear sunfish. The sunfish provide good angling opportunities and a good forage base for the Largemouth Bass. Northern Pike and Tiger Muskie were stocked just after the impoundment filled but failed to reproduce.

Bass Fishing in Patoka Lake is popular due to the catch rates and sizes available. There is a 15-inch length limit on Largemouth Bass. This length limit has helped the fishery produce many 3 – 5 pound Largemouth Bass and the catch rates are above the state’s average. I have personally taken many legal size bass from this lake with the largest weighing in at 7.5 pounds.

During the spring (March and April) anglers should concentrate on shallow water first. Many legal size male will be preparing for the spawn during this time and are eager to feed. When the surface water temperatures reach the middle 50-degree range this shallow activity will begin. If shallow water bass are yet active the bigger females can be found preparing for the spawning activity in depths of 8 – 12 feet. Crankbaits and spinnerbaits are a good choice for locating these bass. Anglers are advised to use a slow presentation during this season, as the bass will generally not chase a fast moving lure. Once bass are located, a jig is ideal for taking bigger bass. Jigs can be presented in shallow water by flipping and pitching or with a deep slow approach.

As the water temperatures reach the low 60’s anglers should try jerk baits and flukes for shallow water bass. Again, start with a slow presentation and speed up if the bass are active. Site fishing for spawning bass is popular among anglers at Patoka Lake because the water is generally clear in the spring. Anglers should always be looking for nests and bass when fishing in the shallow water along the shoreline. When fishing beds, shaky worms, tubes and lizards are always a good choice. Bass immediately released will generally return to the bed and little harm is done to the fishery.

Bass do not all spawn at the same time. The larger females can still be found in the 8 – 12 feet of water near spawning areas throughout the spawn. With water temperatures in the 60’s slow rolled spinnerbaits and crankbaits are a good lure choice to target these bigger bass.

When the water temperatures reach the middle 70-degree mark, the spawn, for the most part, is over. There may still be some males guarding nests but they will be few and far between. The females have moved off into the deeper water near the spawning areas. Crankbaits running in 10-foot depths are a productive presentation for the post-spawn females. In the clear water of Patoka Lake bluegill pattern crankbaits will be the best producers since the bass rely on the bluegill for a food source. However, if water is heavily stained to muddy fire tiger patters seem to work better. Also, chartreuse spinnerbaits with double gold blade are a great produced in dirty water conditions.

Once the water warms into the 80’s bass will hold in and near deep water. The river and creek channel ledges with deep water in close proximity can hold large schools of bass in tightly concentrated areas under these conditions. The areas most productive are channel swings close to the shoreline. These steep banks allow bass to move up to feed and back down to more comfortable water temperatures and oxygen levels. Anglers should concentrate on the ends of the channel swings where broken rock and timber is often present. The thermocline in Patoka Lake develops between 20 and 25 feet deep. The area just above this is often the most productive depth for summertime bass fishing. Large plastic worms of 10 – 13 inches will be productive on the larger bass holding near the thermocline.

Fall fishing on Patoka Lake can be phenomenal. Bass chase the sunfish, shad and golden shiners that are abundant in preparation for the cold winter ahead. The first indication for these circumstances is the large schools of baitfish swimming just below the surface. When the baitfishes start jumping above the surface it is due to predators chasing them. Shallow running crankbaits, flukes and top-water lures are most effective at this time. However, a lipless crankbait left to flutter below the schools of baitfish will produce the bigger bass. The bigger bass will suspend below the baitfish and take the injured baitfish that fall through the water column. Spoons like the Johnson Silver Minnow allowed to slowly descend after the cast is also very effective. The best way to find fall bass is to keep your eyes and ears open for feeding activity while on the water. Also, birds diving at the water will indicate where the baitfish schools are located.

Winter at Patoka Lake is quite slow for bass fishing. There are times when the lake freezes enough to allow ice fishing. When the water falls into the 40-degree range I use a jig and work it slowly along the bottom in and near deep water. My most productive presentation is a slow crawling motion to mimic a crayfish. The water is usually clear during the cold months and crayfish colored jigs are the top producers. The steep shorelines are the most productive during cold conditions.

Anglers that are not familiar with it often overlook Patoka Lake. It is located off the beaten path relative to other popular reservoirs. However, a trip to this lake is well worth the drive for an avid angler.

Bluffing the Cold

By Marc Rogers

 

Bass Fishing Bluffs in Winter

The winter season can prove a difficult time for many anglers.  When the water temperatures fall into the 40-degree range and below the bass’ metabolism slows drastically.  They become lethargic and feed infrequently, sometimes only once per week.  This lethargic behavior makes them more difficult to catch.

Presenting slow moving lures along bluff walls is a very productive technique to catch bass in cold-water conditions.  Bluff walls have some key features that other structure lacks.  Bluff walls allow bass to reach a comfort zone in both temperature and depth with less distance to travel by moving vertically.  If the bass desires a ten-foot depth change they have the opportunity to move just ten feet when positioned along bluff walls.

The key to bluff fishing in the colder seasons is a slow, vertical presentation.  Jigging spoons and jigs tend to be the most productive.  While both lures can be productive the jig is a little more versatile than the spoon for a slow presentation and bass key on crawfish for a cold season diet.

Finesse jigs are often a good choice for winter bass fishing.  The slow metabolism of the bass, a cold-blooded creature, requires much smaller meals in cold water conditions.  The presentation of the jig should also be slow because crayfish are also cold-blooded creatures.  A fast moving crayfish in cold water is very unnatural and not effective for catching bass.  Also, bass will not chase bait when its metabolism is running at such a low rate.

The finesse jig presented to the bass should be natural crayfish colors.  Bright colors are great for grabbing the bass’ attention in warm-water conditions but cold water is a completely different situation.  Natural colored jigs, presented slowly, are much more effective during the winter.  The best colors to use are brown and dark green colors.  Under most winter conditions water clarity is not a factor in color choice because the lack of rain allows for the water to remain clear.  Clear water allows these natural colors to be seen easily by the bass.

Larger jigs are effective at times and many anglers believe this is because the bass will look for bigger meals at fewer intervals to conserve the energy required to pursue prey.  Others believe the larger profile attract the bass’ attention and it is the slow presentation that is the key to the baits effectiveness.  Regardless of the thoughts, it is ideal to tie both baits onto two different outfits and present both in the same areas throughout the day.

Football head jigs are the best choice when presenting jigs in rocky areas.  The football head design keeps the jig positioned upright because of the wide profile of the jig head.  Also, the wide profile minimizes the chance of the jig head getting wedged in crevices throughout the bluff.

Bluff walls offer a variety of structure and cover for the bass.  The broken rocks, strewn throughout the bluffs, are ideal for Smallmouth bass.  Smallmouth bass tend to prefer rock cover more so than Kentucky and Largemouth bass.  Also, Smallmouth bass will often school with others of similar size during the winter.  If a Smallmouth bass is caught the angler should spend some additional time in the same area to target the possible school.  Anglers targeting Largemouth bass should look for fallen trees (commonly called dead falls) along bluff walls.  The Largemouth bass prefer the additional cover provided by the fallen timber.  However, the lure presentation for Largemouth bass is generally the same as for Smallmouth.

Spinning gear is a better choice for presenting lures to bluff walls.  The spinning reel allows an angler to leave the reel’s bail open, which aids in the vertical presentation, by allowing the lure to free-fall through the water column.   To get a true vertical presentation with a bait casting reel anglers must pull line off the spool while the lure is falling.  With either reel, if the spool is locked after the cast a lure will fall with a pendulum like presentation and not keep in contact with the structure.   Keeping the jig in contact with the structure is key to mimicking a crayfish falling along the bluff.  Once the jig rests on the many small ledges on the bluff it should be moved slightly, allowing it to fall to the next ledge.  The key to detecting a strike is paying close attention to the line after the lure lands on a ledge.  Many times the strike is so light an angler cannot feel it.

There are many effective cold-water presentations available to anglers pursuing bass in impoundments.  Current weather and water conditions play a major roll in which ones are most productive on any given day.  However, if you find you favorite impoundment to have water temperatures to be in the low 40-degree range or lower you should spend some of your time presenting jigs on bluff walls.  Clear water conditions will make this presentation even more productive.