It finally happened! Cold wet weather arrived making it very hard to get out
and do any fishing. But it is anticipated that this change in weather will
bring surface water temperature down into the magical 60 degree range. It's
now time. The best fall fishing will prevail for
the next two weeks.
Rosa Berget with striper
Schooling stripers have been lethargically holding in deep water at the
backs of the canyons near shad and sunfish. Activity level of these schools
will now increase. Perhaps the best way to find these active schools is to
use tactics that worked so well in the springtime. Trolling deep diving
lures where bottom depth is 25 to 45 feet will allow one to pinpoint school
location. Then it is possible to use your favorite technique to catch fish.
Continuing to troll is fine, or drop a spoon in the active school to collect
large numbers of schooling stripers. When the action slows its time to use
cut bait and copious chumming to get the school fired up again. Striper
fishing just got better than it was in September.
Some of the best locations mimic those found in the spring. In fact,
using tactics that were successful in spring 2009 and
2010 will work well right now.
Rock Creek has had more good reports than any other spot in the southern
lake but I would not hesitate to try canyons in Padre Bay and Last Chance as
well. San Juan and Escalante will be good bets along with Slick Rock, Lake
Canyon, Halls Bay, Hansen Creek and Knolls Canyon. The Hite area is still
shad-rich so boils and normal fall fishing patterns prevail there.
Night fishing for stripers will peak during October. The lighted marina
areas and buoy field will be the hot spots but any school located during the
day time will respond to lights and chumming after dark. If fishing from a
houseboat it is best to anchor in deep water for best night fishing results.
Bass fishing is now peaking as well.
Look for big numbers of small bass and a smattering of 2-pound bass to be
caught each day on rocky points close to the main channel and main canyon.
Bass have not moved all the way to the back of canyons and coves yet. Again,
use the same baits and tactics that were good in the spring to catch active
bass in these unusual fall conditions where shad are scarce. Cast to the
shoreline with crankbaits or plastic grubs until a hot spot is located.
There will be long stretches of shore without fish, but when the aggregation
is found numerous fish will be caught in short order. Location is probably
more important now than lure selection. Said differently, it is better to
find the right spot than to have on the right lure. Cover lots of water
quickly until the spot that holds fish is found. Each day subtle changes in
weather will excite bass into activity. A breeze beginning to blow after a
long calm spell may trigger feeding activity. Bass have been very
temperamental recently but general feeding will now replace this reluctance.
Expect much more activity from the bass population than seen last month.