Thanksgiving has come and gone and the winter patterns are heating up. The number of anglers on the water are low, the chances of you getting hooked up on that fish of a lifetime are very good. This month will be a great time to catch bass, striper and crappie as long as Old Man Winter doesn’t come down to hard on us.
Don’t forget about the December Big Fish contest at Fish Tales, located at Anna Point Marina. They are paying a $100 prize for the largest bass, crappie and striper weighed in for the month. To be eligible, all you have to do is launch from APM and pay the $8 ramp fee or be a yearly ramp pass holder. If you are fishing with a guide or an employee, the $8 ramp fee MUST be paid prior to your outing.
BASS- The largemouth will be in a full winter pattern starting this month. Look for fish to be on main lake points, deep brush and rock piles, channel edges and deep stump fields. Great way to catch them are with suspending jerk baits, spoons like the Tooth Ache, blade baits like the Silver Buddy and Riverside Ripper and Jig & Pig combinations. Fishing slow and finding the bait fish are the keys to winter time fishing. You will still be able to find some schooling action in the Dike 3 area of the lake all month. A-Rigs will be a major player again this winter to put fish in the boat.
CRAPPIE- The Specks have moved from the shallows to the winter time hideouts. Bridge pilings, deep docks and brush piles will hold numbers of fish all winter. Small minnows rigged on slip bobbers and 2″ curl tail grubs are great ways to catch them. There will be all sorts of sizes schooled up together this time of year. (not necessarily according to size) Most of the time you will have to catch lot’s of small ones to get the keepers that you are after. This is the reason I prefer artificial bait.
STRIPER- These will be the most sought out fish all winter long. Early in the month you can catch them up in the “RIVERS” until the water temps start to drop and then they will follow the bait back down to the mid lake area. Around Christmas they should be located around the 208 bridge and the Dike 3 fish will also be turning on. Look for birds diving as an indicator that bait fish is in the area. Don’t run all the way up to the diving birds, the school can be very large and fish can be caught 100 yards of more away from the action. I like Bass Assassin Sea Shads rigged on a 1/4oz long shank jig head. Downsizing your line will help you as well. I use 8lb Izorline on my spinning outfits and 10lb Izorline on my casting. Remember you are fishing open water, no need for large line tests to get them in the boat. Spoons and blade baits will work if the fish are not actively feeding. Look for them on your electronics and give them a vertical presentation. Good luck and I will see you out there!!!
Lake Level- Full Pool
Water Temps (as of 11-26-12)
Dike 3- 57 degrees
Down Lake- 50-54 degrees
Mid Lake- 48-52 degrees
Up Lake- 47-51 degrees