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fishrman

Where are the bass at?

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I've noticed because of the water levels and weird weather this year the bass in the lakes I fish are not in there usual summer spots. Just wondering if anyone else is seeing this and what types of structure or areas they are finding fish. I still am finding them on points and sunken islands and such but not as deep as I usually do for this time of year. Seem the fish are really scattered also. Thanks all.

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I was out yesterday and finally got into numbers and some good sized fish on some of the deep water summer spots on my home lake. Ive caught a few fish on these spots earlier this year but it seems more fish are making their way deep. The water temp was only mid 70s which seems cool for mid july. Im guessing thats one of the factors.

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Up here in the Brainerd Lakes area the bass are just now moving into their summer pattern. I am doing quite well early in the morning and the evening fishing in the deeper reeds with top water stuff. During the day they are on the deep breaks, around rock/hard bottom and cabbage weeds.

Very unusual summer up here so far with very cool nights and daytime temps in the 70's.

It was interesting following the Minnesota Bound tournament this weekend on Gull. A cold front came through on Friday night with bright sunshine on Saturday day 2. A number of guys who did well on Friday had a tough time on Saturday. Brad Liefermann was the one guy who was on nice fish both days and consistant and thus won. Gull is loaded with 13/14 inch bass but there are also good numbers of 16/18 inch fish. The trounament is really well run by Ron and Rick.

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A buddy of mine told me that Bass don't really start schooling up on deeper rocks in a lot of our area lakes till the corn starts showing tassels. Now I realize this is a generalization of summer patterns but I'm thinking that deeper schooling most likely does occur around that time and I'm thinking the corn around the west metro should be showing tassels in a couple weeks. I'm just wondering if any others have heard of things like this. I did have some luck casting DT-16s with large pike out on some deeper rock but there were no active / agressive bass out there. I personally think in many lakes that the majority of fish are in transition from shallow to deep. It's been on the cooler side for a while now and water temps around here are in the low 70's still.

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I actualy caught a few bass off deep rocks this year while other bass were still sitting on beds. I caught lots of bass off deep rocks last weekend. Just cause they didnt hit cranks doesnt mean they werent there. On the lake I fish often I usually start with a crank through the rocks to see if they will bite if they do, great, its an effective way to catch lots of them. If I dont get any I pull out the drop shot and camp out on them and it usually never fails me. This past weekend nothing touched the cranks but the bass and a few 'eyes were all about the dropshot...

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When you guys say "deep rocks", what exactly do you mean. How deep are we talking about here. Is there a general depth. Also, how often is this depth accessablw from shore?

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Depends on the lake. Dirty water, deep rocks could be 12'. Clear water it could be 25'. Either way they are typically off the break and difficult to reach from shore.

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When you say "rocks," are we talking boulders that would be obvious on a graph, or hard-bottom pebble or gravel areas that would be signified by your graph's grayline? I have been struggling with finding deep, summer-pattern bass. Any further tips would be much appreciated.

Thanks!

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The rocks I fish are in a murkier lake and run 8' near the top and 12' on the deep side during normal water levels (around 10' this year). Most of the piles I was fishing are actually near the top of a breakline right before the water plumits down to 20'+. The rocks range anywhere from smaller baseball size to a few 3' diameter bolders. Those are pretty obvious and that spot was found with my sonar. Some of the others were found by feeling the bottom with my lure or by getting snagged on them. I also keep an eye on the depthfinder alot when fishing looking for any little bottom change, weedclump, rock, etc. If I see something promising I mark a waypoint and investigate further. The fish Ive been catching seem to locate themselves near the larger boulders. Though in the winter the walleyes use the smaller gravely areas more but thats not important here...

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The rocks I like the best are where you will get an occasional wedge and have to struggle to get your lure out... unless of course a piggy finds it first! smile

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I usually hit the deeper rocks with a crank first and try to intice the agressive fish in the area. If they are there and they are agressive you'll have a good day. If theyre not agressive but are there I usually go to a football jig and toss out a medium cast, let it sink and hop it back through and around gravel / rocks. Problem is if they don't like the slower aproach and I'm fishing league (3hrs)time turns into a bigger issue and I'm usually forced to give up and move to another spot. Fortunately if the fish aren't schooled up out on the deeper rocks they can usually be found in and around the outside weed edges. So thats were I would normally go if I didn't have luck with the crank or the jig.

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Quote:
When you say "rocks," are we talking boulders that would be obvious on a graph, or hard-bottom pebble or gravel areas that would be signified by your graph's grayline? I have been struggling with finding deep, summer-pattern bass. Any further tips would be much appreciated.

Thanks!

I would say if the lake has them, yes boulders. however, no they do not show up on a graph often. The graph will show "hard" bottom. But hard bottom can be sand, clay, gravel, ect.. the only real way to know if they are boulders is with an underwater camera. My Aqua-Vu stays in the boat all summer and is used almost on a daily basis when looking for New areas.

Quote:
What areas would you guys target in mid to late summer if there are no deep rocks and no well defined deep weedline?

Juan- good question, and one I really dont have a great answer for. I would look for hard bottom areas, maybe there is rock there that you dont know about yet. Look for deeper pockets of weeds if it has patches of deeper coontail or such they can really hold fish. If the lake does not have either of those things, you going to have to fish depth contours or shallow structure.(IE Weeds, Docks)

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What areas would you guys target in mid to late summer if there are no deep rocks and no well defined deep weedline?

The local bar.

or maybe docks, or scattered weed flats with a jig worm or texas rig. It really depends on structure, weed growth, and weather conditions... lots of variables.

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Ha, I figured I'd get a few "find another lake" comments.

I fish this lake alot only because we have a camper on it. There are some nice points and a few shallow humps, but no rocks that I've found. The water is pretty stained so the weeds only go out to 8-9 feet. I guess I'll have to focus on the best weed edges I can find.

I need to get a camera so I can do some exploring. There is one spot I've found that has a quick drop from a weedy point that goes from 3' down to 9' in a hurry. The harder bottom is at 9' and is free of weeds, according to my finder. Seems like a very fishy spot...just the wrong kind of fish. I've caught crappies and walleyes there, but no bass.

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A tip for people that are new to deep water bassin: This time of year walleyes tend to relate to the same transitions from rock/hard bottom to weeds that the bass do. So a quick way to locate some deeps spots on a lake you're new to is to go where you see walleye fisherman frequenting and move around with you graph a little. Make sure there is a some structure there and then fish around a little. It doesn't always work but if you're trying to cut down your deep learning curve give it a try and I think you'll be happily surprised.

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I look for weed clumps off the main weedline. Say weedline is in 12' look in like 15-17 feet. There will be weed clumps there, just need to find em.

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