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BigGrassBass

Clear water help

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I need a little help. There is a small lake in my "back yard" that is deep and crystal clear. I can see bass all the time but I never get more than a couple a day.

I've tried everything I can think of. I've downsized my lures and even went to 4lb. mono just to get a strike. I've tried ripping spinnerbaits and cranks in hopes of reaction strikes. Buzzbaits and frogs are not doing the trick either. Last night I even tried shinner minnows under a bobber with no luck. They always look at the bait and then swim away.

The lake has a high population of small sunfish and even when I go to a bait to mimic a sunfish I still have little success.

Any ideas out there that might help me out. Keep in mind, the lake is crystal clear. I was out in a canoe the other day and in 20' of water I could make out rocks the size of the computer mouse I'm using right now.

Thanks for any imput. I'll give it a shot and let you know how it works.

BGB

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Where did you get the shinner minnows. The bass will take a sucker minnow too. But try a white or blue spinner bait and slow-roll the spinner bait. not fast.

They say if you can see the bass hes sees you too.

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Fished a similar situation earlier in the week. We found a sharp break, put the boat in 30ft and casted an 1/8oz jig w/ a shaky worm (5in powerbait) up near the weeds and slowly worked it back to the boat. I am not used to fishing this deep, but it was the only thing that worked. Caught a couple of bigs ones this way, too. Good luck.

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Shinners came from my dad. He was up in Brainerd last week and I've had them in the aquarium since then. I'll ask him what shop he got them at.

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One word - Senko. OK maybe a couple more words. 4" Senko and size 1/0 EWG hook. No weight just hook n Senko.

If the bass sees you they get spooked and are hard to catch. Come back to that spot 45 mins - 1 hour later and make a long cast to said spot.

Or try a small jig 1/8 (like a bitzy bug) with some type of crayfish trailer. Another good option is a small stand up jig head and strait tail worm. (Shaky Head is what I'm thinking)

It's hard to believe they didn't take the shiner though.

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I'll try the Senko thing. I've done a little drop shot rig and have had the most consistant success with that rig. The Senko is right in line and I can't believe I didn't think of that sooner. I'll give it a shot after work tonight!!!

Thanks guys for all the suggestions!

BGB

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Hiya -

I fish lakes that range from moderately to nauseatingly clear...it can be a challenge for sure.

One thing to always be aware of is that you have to be sneaky. If you can see the bass they've already seen you, and are a lot less likely to bite. Make LONG casts when you can. Get the wind behind you, and bombs away. Even when I'm fishing Largemouths in lakes like this I use the same rod/reel combo I use casting grubs for smallies, which is a 7'6" spinning rod with a 4000-size reel and 6lb mono. Usually if you're within 60 feet of the fish they're well aware of you, so cast a long ways and be as stealthy as you can when you approach spots.

On lakes like the one you described, I do a lot of fishing with pretty subtle soft plastics. Finesse worms on a jighead, or a split shot/Mojo rig, for example, or tubes and paddle-tail grubs like a Stingray Grub, Persuader Paddle Tail, Producto Spring Grub or Lunker City Pudgie. Fish as little weight as you can stand so the plastic just kind of glides along. Translucent colors like smoke, watermelon, etc., are the norm for me. You want something that really blends in.

Except for spring and fall, I seldom do all that well with traditional power fishing stuff like spinnerbaits on lakes like these. They're just too much in the clear water unless the fish are REALLY cranked up (or you're night fishing which is WELL worth trying on lakes like these). Swimming jigs work well at times though. So do walk the dog topwaters. I also do pretty well on crankbaits, but they're almost always wood or balsa baits with no rattles fished along deep weed edges. Hard-vibrating baits can be a bit much in clear water so slender baits sometimes work better - think Shad Rap or Minnow Rap.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,

Rob Kimm

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One thing I forgot is a topwater frog. It's just natural for them to hit something at the surface. RK's post bout the walk the dog got me thinking. RK's right about being real stealthy. Like crouching or casting while on your knees. LOL

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Sometimes I can get a sighted bass to take an inline spinner. Perhaps worth a shot.

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I would recommed very long casts with a topwater in clear water. Try the early morning or evening when the water is very calm and if overcast or almost dusk even better. I recommend a heddon prop style, a devil horse, zara spook, or popper, or a jerk bait like an xrap. Long casts in clear calm water bass will come from far and wide, deep and shallow to investigate the surface noise. Good luck, set the hook, and have fun.

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Thanks for the help guys! I've found now the best thing is to take a gulp power nightcrawler in natural color and throw it out there withoug a weight and just let it settle on the bottom. Tiny twitches from there and when a sunfish doesn't have it, a bass does!

I also saw several hundred bass fingerlings last night! All in the 2-3" range. My wife had the idea of a twister tail in green/black and let me tell you, that was a MAJOR ticket last night. She got crappies, sunfish, and a 20 inch largie to go with it! (sorry, no camera) Needless to say when I get home tonight supper won't be ready, she'll be down at the pond! (I'm not complaining!)

Anyway I just wanted to say thanks for all the suggestions and help. It's what makes this board so great.

BGB

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