Weather's cold, parking lots are empty. Not much fishing activity going on. This will be my last regular report. I will still update the web page every time some new fishing information comes in. Look us up on the Internet for winter fishing information.
Striped bass are feeding on shad in deep water. Most shad are seen on the graph at depths greater than 60 feet. There is not an overabundance of shad remaining so every fish concentration seen on the graph is a potential striped bass spot. Normally the spot to start looking is midway back in a short canyon and 2/3 back in a long canyon. Start searching at 80 feet keeping in mind that stripers above 60 feet are the easiest to catch. Look for humps, ridges, drop offs, and shelves. If fish traces are not found try dropping spoons or bait along the edges of prominent underwater structure. Sometimes stripers are in close proximity to the bottom and not distinguishable on the graph. Spend only a few minutes fishing where no fish traces are seen.
It is much better to find traces and fish at the depth where fish are seen. Use a floating marker to mark a school's location. Return to the marker to start a new drift when the breeze moves the boat away from the school. Chumming is now advisable if fishing bait. Use an anchor to stay near fish and in the area that was chummed.
Stripers are found on winter feeding grounds in main Warm Creek, Last Chance, and between Good Hope Bay and Hite. There are not many stripers at the Rincon and other midlake locations.
Smallmouth bass are still catchable. On November 9 the wind quit blowing long enough for us to spend a productive afternoon fishing at the Rincon. Water temperature was 59. Two anglers using watermelon single tail grubs started drifting with the wind along the 3 mile long rock slide downstream from the west Rincon. Smallmouth bit steadily from beginning to end for over 4 hours. Total catch was 66 bass from 6 to 13 inches. That was fun.
This pattern is repeatable. Afternoons are productive but anytime during the day is good. As temperature continues to drop it will be necessary to use a slow bottom bumping, swimming retrieve instead of a normal hopping retrieve to get good results. Depth varies from right on shore to 40 feet. If nothing happens shallow turn around and try dropping the grub in deep water.
Catfish are catchable at night and stripers can be attracted to artificial light and caught with bait in a boat anchored in 50 feet of water near shad traces.