Looking at this nasty cold weather you would not expect to see many people on the lakes. Late last week, however, it was cool but a pretty nice day when my friend James Roberts and I went bass fishing for a few hours after work. We went to Carr Creek Lake and went out on his boat.
We started out fishing crank baits on banks with large flats and dropping off into deeper water or anywhere the river channel hugged the bank. These types of places are fall fishing hot spots for feeding bass. A combination of off-colored water and falling water plus a cold front moving in really hurt the fishing a lot. We fished the shallow running crank baits for around an hour with a few small strikes.
During this time of year bass will school shad into shallow water areas and will feed on them at certain times of the day. This is the pattern we were trying to fish, but all the negative things against us shut this fast paced style of fishing down. When bass are scattered over a large flat area and are active, a crank bait or spinner bait is a great choice. These are what experienced bass anglers refer to as search baits. What this means is you can make long casts and several casts quickly and cover a lot of water. By fishing like this you do two things: You can pick up active bass in a large area and you can eliminate unproductive water that does not hold active bass.
The bass were not holding or feeding in shallow flat areas, so we moved to deeper banks with some wood and rock cover in around six feet of water. We started fishing tube baits slowly on 3/8-oz. jig heads. We got a few pecking strikes but nothing hard enough for a hook set. After a while I recommend a deeper spot with a lot of standing timber. This proved to be a wise decision. We moved to an area with all kinds of standing timber and some deeper water in the 20-foot range. We switched to small darker colored jigs and fished deeper and much slower. As we fished like this we started getting many more bites. After a while I hooked into a real nice largemouth in around 15 feet of water on my jig. The bass was holding tight to the wood cover.
After a good fight I got the bass up to the surface and James netted it for me. It measured 18 inches and weighed close to three pounds. This made for a very fun day. You can e-mail me at gabbysfi firstname.lastname@example.org.