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Craigums

Low water clarity; off-shore fishing

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Anybody have luck fishing off the bank on lakes with low water clarity (2.5' or less)? I've always just hit docks, laydowns, and emergent vegetation on lakes like that since a lot of the time it seems like the weeds wont grow to deep. Thoughts?

 

Sorry about all these "off-shore" questions. I just got a GPS graph on my bow with mapping and now I'm kind of obsessed with fishing away from the bank... 

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Yes. Mostly on those lakes that turn green in the summer, but are moderately clear early in the year. Cranks, Carolina rigs and jigs/worms near the bottom.

Edited by RuddyDuck

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That's about all the lakes I fish. And I hate to fish shallow. Follow the weedline out as deep as it it goes and usually fish out an additional 10' or so past the weed edge. Some lakes that might only be 8'-10' deep though. Finding the deepest coontail in a lake is usually the best for me, or closest to deep water.  

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They'll sit at the bottom of dropoffs with no weeds around whatsoever. A large bass isn't too worried about being eaten - and dark water is enough cover on it's own. As long as there is food there, the fish will be there.

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Caught about a dozen out in 8-11ft last weekend. Checked and water clarity was about 2ft. Got some on lipless in the 8ft range and others a little deeper on jigs. Finding Weed clumps were key. At first they liked the 3/4 jig, but then I lighten up a bit and got more bites on jigs.

Edited by RuddyDuck

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On July 1, 2016 at 0:03 AM, Nick Kuhn said:

They'll sit at the bottom of dropoffs with no weeds around whatsoever. A large bass isn't too worried about being eaten - and dark water is enough cover on it's own. As long as there is food there, the fish will be there.

^Nailed it!

I started fishing deeper water a couple years ago. I would always fish the outside weed edge and try to stay within 10 feet of the outside edge regardless of water clarity. Boy was I wrong....

Last year I fished a tournament on a metro lake with about 3' clarity. Deep edge ended pretty sharply in 10-12'. I didn't see any weeds on my graph deeper than about 15'. Tournament day my buddy and I struggled. Couldn't buy a bite. We pull up to a rock hump that topped out at 9'. I fired a jig to the deep edge, about 12' and got smoked by a 3 pounder. I was fired up. This was it! We finally found em! Worked that hump for the next 2 hours and not one bite. Cranks, jigs, dropshot, nothing! We worked it from 9'-18'. We get to the weigh feeling pretty down about our day. Where the heck were the fish today?!

First place 18 pounds, second place 15.75 fishing dropshots and football jigs in 28 FEET OF WATER! I couldn't believe it. That far out from the weed edge?! Both teams suspected crawdads had moved that far out and the bass followed.

Long story short, fish don't always follow the rules. Sometimes you have to go deep. Very deep.

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Had to be a pile of rocks in that 28' of water, right? I mean SOMETHING to hold the fish. Was it a deep point or hump or what?

 

That's the stuff I'm trying to learn. If what I'm doing isn't working I want to be able to look at a contour map and say "Let's try here". Sure I can side image to try to put it together even more but where's the starting point?

 

On a side note: I fished what I would call a hump this weekend that topped out in about 10-12' of water, little to no weeds on the top. On the side imaging it looked like a sunfish bed (it wasn't but thats what it resembled in the image). I dragged a jig around and could feel it bouncing off what I assume was small rocks. Decided to try out a drop shot and was rewarded with this guy

 

IMG_20160724_151428_zpsy7edmo8a.jpg

Edited by Craigums

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I was wondering the same thing.  I'd assume it wasn't a mucky bottom.  I love fishing deep whether hard bottom or weed edges but I have a lot to learn.

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When going to a new lake, I'll check out the contour map and look for humps and underwater points. They will be hard, whether rock, gravel, or sand.  Out on the water. on the graph, I'll look for where fuzzy bottom turns a nice clear yellow. The wider the yellow band is, the harder the bottom.   If it's a point, I'll zig-zag back and forth and drop waypoints on the top of the structure.  That will give you a nice visual line of the point  I don't have SI - yet, but I can see bigger rocks on the graph. Then I'll start dragging a football head around.

  Also when running, pay attention to your graph and look for that yellow bottom to show up at random places where they might not be on the map. I've found a few new spots just going from spot to spot.

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