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I've been fishing this lake quite a bit lately...might as well since I live on it. I figure I'll start this thread and keep adding to it instead of making new ones for each outing.

The last few times out have been pretty educational. Some thing I've thought would work haven't and I've found bass in places I would have passed up before. Each trip adds a little piece to the puzzle I think and I'm starting to get skunked on trips less and less. 4 out of the last 5 outings have been successful, and I hope that trend will continue.

Yesterday was a fun but frustrating trip also. I had initial success with a dropshot rig with a tiny green pumpkin fluke type of soft plastic and was able to pull one out of a small school suspended over an isolated brush pile in 10 feet of water on the side of a ledge nearby a close spawning flat. It supported my idea that we're going to see more suspended fish in the near term with the post-spawn, and especially so with the recent unstable weather.

Shortly after that I lost two crankbaits back to back after getting bites from a couple of bass in 10-15ft of water on the same ledge. I was using 12lb Seagar Flourocarbon, and both times as soon as I set the hook (and not too hard either) I'd feel a snap and get that sinking feeling once the line felt light and I knew what had happened. After that I wanted to go check the area where I got the bite and see if maybe one of them tossed the plug so I could collect it, but lo and behold my rudder cable on my kayak came undone. With the delicate touch of someone defusing a bomb I balanced precariously on the back of my kayak and fixed the problem, but never found either of my plugs... seeds of doubt about flouro were sewn then.

Later I found a school piled thick against the bridge pilings on the north side of the I-35 bridge, but couldn't coax a bite. I wasted too much time on that group of fish thinking surely I could get them fired up. I tried slowly working grubs and other small plastics and only learned I'm just as good at getting weedless lures hung up as I am at getting exposed hook lures hung. I was not very delighted.

In the end I checked out a ditch leading off of a flat into deep water and found a couple relating to that structure in 12-15ft of water. I used a plain black zoom trick worm on a shakey head and landed a nice fish. I was surprised at both the lightness of the bite as well as how far down his throat he gulped it. It took me a while, but I managed to extract it without her being too worse for wear. There might be something to that saying, "when in doubt throw a black worm".

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The past few outings though I've had some success in low-light hours with a jig, so this morning I decided I was only taking one rod, and two jigs. One brown, one black. That's it.

I think with the stained water from the recent rain they didn't want the brown one... but that was in my ultra top-secret triple classified honey hole of the lake, which is usually a little muddier than the rest of the water. So I switched to the black one and started skipping it way up under overhanging tree limbs. It wasn't long before I got to yank on one and was tickled to reel in a nice 2.5lb bass.

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I plan to go back out this evening for just a lil bit and see if I can poke another one with a jig. This weekend I'll make a run to cabelas to replace my crankbaits lost in the line of duty.

One thing I am curious about is the abrasion on flourocarbon... it's supposed to be better abraision resistant than mono.... but so far it isn't being my experience. I noticed today skipping jigs around I was seeing some worn patches of line. At first I thought no big deal just wrestled with a fish, lemme re-tie. But then the next cast I noticed the same thing, re-tied again, then the next cast, and the cast after that. At this point I'm thinking what the hell man.... Nearly dropped my rod in the water trying to check out the rod tip and see if there was something jacked up in there roughing up the line, but no. So right now I'm thinking of just switching back to braid, and using a flouro leader only when I'm fishing a worm or doing some finesse presentation.

Anyway here's a few more pictures of some fish I've caught over the last couple days:

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theshirtisthesecret.jpg
 

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Fluorocarbon line
#1 Worming - Use 15 lb Seaguar Red label. Invisix you have to go up in the line size or it will break.
#2 Cranking - 12 lb Seaguar Red label. Invisiz is too soft and I lost too many baits.
#3 Tungsten weights - If you use tungsten weights, then no matter what line you have will create a weak spot at the hook. Use heat shrink and insert it each weight. Frys has 36 inch links for like 1$. You just heat up the heat shrink on one end, slide it in an pull the end out. Cut with about 1/8 inch on each side.
#4 Tungsten - A plastic bead between the hook and the Tungsten weight will also save the knot. Hobby lobby or a craft store has these for a $ or 2.
#5 Tungsten interview with Aaron Martins - https://www.bassresource.com/bass-fishing-videos/tungsten-aaron-martens.html

The type of knot can also be the cause. Palomar or albright seem to be the best to me. But that is another story and everyone has their own preference.

Hope this information will save you a few buck losing and or a big fish.

Go rip some lips...

Bassectomy
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I ended up finding the culprit to the line issue... Inspecting my rod tip closely there is a crack in the guide. It's a new rod, so a manufacturer's defect... That's the bad news, time for the good news:

I took one of my other rods and went out again this evening... I've been practicing my jig skipping technique to get more accurate getting my lure well up under low hanging tree limbs and narrow openings in boat docks. I went out this evening not trying really to catch much but just to have fun goofing around.

Managed to skip my jig into a pocket of overhanging limbs and a nice 2lber couldn't resist sampling my brown jig.

Eased a litter further back into hole to get a look at the thick stuff and threaded my jig way under some brush and skittering back to the bank. One hop, two hop, SLAM!!! and the fight was on! I got her out of the tree and then she really started to dig. She came up and danced for me and I reeled in just as fast as I could! I got her close to the kayak and grabbed her as fast as I could.... She ended up weighing 5lbs even, though when I first saw her jump my heart skipped a beat and I thought I had a 10lber on, lol. :)

I decided to end it on a high note and headed back after I watched her swim away. I hope you all get the chance to stick a big one this weekend too!


5lbToad.jpg

SlaunchDonkey.jpg
 

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I'm going to have to get me a Kayak or a Bass buggy again. I miss not fishing Lady bird. Or as us old folks call it, Town Lake. Nice fish.
 

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Very comprehensive and interesting reports, spark. Your fish shirt is really eye-catching, very cool.

I'm glad you've exonerated Seaguar, because I'm really fond of their flouro. It is the only fishing related item i'm willing to pay full retail for. (Full disclosure, I'll pay full retail for GYB Yamasenkos, too.)

I like Bassectomy's recommendations. I bounce back and forth between Red and Invizx. I use Red to crank with. I use (Yellow) Invizx for WW, TR (with plastic bead), and DS. I use the Palomar knot for dropshot, but for everything else, I use the Gerald Swindle "Down on the farm" knot. This knot is way stronger than the palomar and IMO easier to tie.
 
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