Lake Fork Fishing Report
Geez, where has the time gone already?! At least spring is finally here, although you can not tell it by the weather on some days. Hopefully after this cold spell the weather will stabilize a lot and the night temperatures will start getting warmer again. The water temps have been in the 60's but with the cold fronts, wind and cold rains that we have had, the surface temp is running between 55 and 58 degree's. There are bass on the beds right now and are ready to bite, so get your Lake Fork Trophy "Live Magic Shads" ready and have fun. I am fishing the Magic Shads weightless and on a weighted swim bait hook in real shallow water out to about 5 foot of water. Also a lizard or other plastics fished Texas rigged are doing good in the Green Pumpkins and Watermelon colors.
I like sight fishing, but I find that a lot of the bass can be real spooky, especially after a front. So, for the most part, I prefer to fish blind, as in, not looking for beds. I just feel like I get a lot more bites staying backed off and also it gives us a chance to catch some of those big girls that may be spawning in deeper water where the beds may not be visible. One of the things that I love to do is fish a mini Carolina rig with a 3/16 oz. weight and about 8 to 10 inch leader with a lizard or a frog. You can fish it in super shallow water out to deeper water and it works great if the fish are being a little finicky or spooky.
If I have some wind, I like to be out in it at times and use spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and swimbaits. You make be a rockin and a rolling, but when you catch that big girl, it can be worth it. As long as I feel safe about not going into the lake, I will be out there, just because I know the size of bass that you can catch right now. With the water temps down, I am trying to fish a little slower if I am fishing the shallow water, but hopefully with a little sunshine and warmer days we will start seeing the temp come back up. The clients that come in April are going to be happy happy happy! We have some great fishing right now, but April is going to be awesome. I hope you will call us for a guide trip and let us put you on your trophy bass of a lifetime. We also have gift certificates for that special someone or even the "boss". Bass Wishes and Safe Boating!
Thank goodness for this warmer weather! This last week we finally saw the water warming up and found some 53 degree water in some area's. There is still a lot of water in the 40's but it's a good start. Some big bass are also starting to show up, although not fast and furious yet, but better.
Our best baits have been lip-less Crankbaits such as Rattletraps, Spinnerbaits, and just recently the Jerkbait has started catching more bass. One of Mark's clients caught an 8 1/2 pound bass on a Jerkbait in about two foot of water.
Mark and Frank finished 4th this last Saturday in the Budlight tournament and had to catch the under the slot bass on a 5 inch worm on a dropshot around timber. It is time to start fishing a Jig in the back of the creeks to catch some really big bass.
We are going to try and post fishing reports once a week all through springtime to keep you up to date on what is going on here at Lake Fork.
We have some really good days open for the next 3 weeks, so check your calendar and book your trip now. We look forward to helping you catch your trophy bass!
Barbara and Mark Stevencon
It's finally getting cold! The Berkley and McDonald tournaments are over, so the big bass will start moving and biting again. We had an awesome summer, with some really big catches on the grass and in the deep water as well as the night fishing. Considering how hot it was, temperature wise, we had a good number of bass over 10 pounds. This summer was one of the best that we have seen for over the slot bass in about 5 years and I think it will carry over into this fall and winter. Now we are armed and ready for the cold weather and some great fishing for Bass, Crappie, White bass and of course some Yellow bass.
The grass is doing good in some places which will start stacking up the shad and bass in and around the grass beds. We have had some of our best Topwater fishing in November off of the grass beds using Frogs, Swim Jigs, Buzzbaits, Zara Spooks, and of course the Yellow Magic popper, all of which will catch a lot of good bass. On cloudy days the bass can be caught all day long around the grass, but this is Fork and we will be spending a lot of our time fishing for the big girls!
This is big bass time until Christmas. The target area's will be creek channels, sharp breaking points, humps and road beds. One of the things that we like about road beds is that there are creek channels that will normally go through the road bed at some point, which means in some cases the bridge, whether it be wood or concrete may still be there. Also, there will be culverts and bar ditches, which will all hold fish. Jigs, 10 inch worms, Football head jigs, Carolina rigs with a Fluke on it, and Jigging spoons will catch a lot of big bass. This time of the year can be a lot of fun when you can sit on one spot and catch Bass, White bass, Crappie, Yellow bass and sometimes a Catfish. But beware.... if your catching a lot of the Yellow bass and they stop or slow down a lot, it usually means the big bass have moved into the area, so be ready. Many times we have had big bass scale our yellow bass while we were bringing them in or they will follow them to the surface. If this happens, we will generally pick up our Carolina rig or at times our 1 ounce spinnerbait and hang on baby!
We have really got a lot of big bass in the lake this year and lots of shad, barfish (Yellow bass), and small white bass for them to really get fat on. We have caught a lot of 9 1/2 pound bass this year that were only 23 inches long! That's a healthy bass. Like last year, if you want some eating fish, we will take you crappie or white bass fishing. This is great for the kids or wife that wants lots of action and great eating. Huge schools of fat crappie and Sand bass are ganging up for the winter and once you find them, a bunch can be caught quickly. The Crappie are already getting out in the 30 foot water now.
DON'T FORGET ABOUT A GIFT CERTIFICATE for Christmas! Great for the spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, boss or great employees or anyone else on your gifting list.
Group and Individual trips welcome. Let us guide you on your next trip to Lake Fork. Give us a call or email and get your next trip set up before the good days are all gone.
HOPE TO SEE YOU SOON,
Barbara and Mark Stevenson
<*)))>< Bass Wishes <*)))))><
Cooler weather is finally here. At least cooler than it has been! The McDonald's tournament is over with and the winner was Jim Redmon from Waxahachie, TX. with a big bass weighing 10.40 lbs. We just had the Berkley tournament and the winner was Robert Laird Sr. of Livingston, TX. with a big bass weighing 10.24 lbs. Anglers said they caught lots of bass, just getting the right ones sometimes eluded them. The McDonald's tournament produced a lot of bass over the slot, and again shows why Lake Fork is the place to catch a bass over 10 lbs. Anglers in both tournaments said they also caught a lot of bass in the 3 - 6 lb. range. Just think about it, on any other lake, tournament anglers would love to have those bass that these anglers were releasing to be caught another day.
It took a few days for the lake to recover from all the fishing pressure, but we managed to catch 20 - 25 bass each morning on 1/2 day trips. But, the bigger bass were not easy to catch. We recently had a good cold front and will be getting another one in a few days. We think that after this front and less fishing pressure, with the water cooling down, we will start catching more of the big bass. We are seeing a lot of schooling bass and some big schools of Sandbass.
Now is the time to get a trip booked for a shot at a bass of a lifetime, for the great fall big bass bite! You can look back in history and know that big bass can come just about anytime of the year, although fall and spring can be some of the best fishing that you will ever experience. Also, I know it's early, but time to be thinking about getting those Christmas presents. A gift certificate for a half or full day guided trip on Lake Fork will be great for family, friends, employees or anyone. You can pay by credit card now using our Pay Pal.
We look forward to your calls and emails, and promise the best service that we can provide. Our goal is to satisfy your fishing requests for a personal trophy bass, learning to fish, or just going out and having fun catch numbers of quality bass, sandbass or crappie.
Barbara and Mark
Well, I can tell you that it is plenty hot right now! Day fishing has been pretty good overall for this time of the year if you can handle the heat. We have been having some breeze if not downright windy days which makes it a lot more tolerable. Not to mention drinking lots of water and sports drinks, also wearing a good sunscreen, hat or cap and wearing good fishing apparel that protects yet breathes. It is so important to stay hydrated and that means starting the day before you plan on being out in the heat.
For Day fishing, we are fishing more half days than anything and starting out right at daylight so that we can get our clients off the water before it gets so hot. On these mornings, we are using some Top water baits or buzzbaits very early over grass. We are starting to get some really good grass now, but very little on top. We are fishing a lot of points and humps at various depths depending on the day. I know this sounds really vague, but it is the truth. The bass are following the shad and so you have to locate the bass that are willing to bite. By mid morning we move out to deeper water, sometimes 18 – 25 ft. using drop shots, heavy football jigs, Carolina rigs, plastic worms and some crankbaits.
One of my favorite times to fish right now is in the evening starting about 5:00 p.m. for some great bites. We are using some spinner baits, drop shot, and plastic worms in 8 – 25 ft. The reason for such a depth difference is because of how we are fishing some of the areas and moving back and forth. Carolina rigs have also been productive in some areas as the bass have been suspending off the bottom. One of the techniques that we use in some of the deeper water is fishing a heavy 1 ounce spinner bait off the bottom. I am sure that some of the swim baits will work out there also.
Some of these deep water areas aren’t just producing good bass, but some great White bass also. We have been having a lot of fun with the White bass and catching enough to have a great fish fry! You can catch the White bass on a good number of different types of baits that have treble hooks, but we prefer to use single hook baits whenever possible. It makes them easier to get off without getting finned. If you want to have a fish fry, Lake Fork has a large supply of White bass and we will fillet and bag them for you at the end of our fishing trip. Time for a fish fry!! The crappie are doing good under the bridges and in brush piles. Right now you can catch them on minnows or jigs and some really good ones are being caught. Our water temperature has been running about 85 degrees.
This is normally my favorite time to night fish, but we have had a lot of wind this year and it seems to pick up during the night. We are still catching some good bass but the bigger ones have been harder to come by when we have to deal with the wind. We have had some really good nights however and it is pretty spectacular out on the lake right now, as this is when we have the most meteor showers. Our night bass have been coming on 7” worms, 12” worms, and jigs. Some bass coming on spinner baits especially during the dark of the moon. Most popular time to night fish is 3 or 4 nights before and after the full moon and we are going to have two full moons this month. I am really looking forward to the next full moon and have high expectations.
Fall is just around the corner and it should be great this year! With the grass coming on and the lake having water in it, we should have an excellent fall. There are tons of shad on the lake, so the Bass and the White bass will have plenty to fatten up on. We are booking now for fall, so call or email and get your date for a great fishing trip on Lake Fork. If you just want to go catch fish or learn a specific technique, we can do the job and make it fun. We look forward to hearing from you and fishing with you.
Wow, time has gotten away from me once again. It has been a busy spring with lots of great clients and some great fishing. In early April we finally got a great rain in our watershed that brought Lake Fork up three foot in about 24 hours and is now less than two foot low. Have had some weather interruptions but overall temperatures have been wonderful, even summer like until a few days ago! Brrr, the last few mornings have been really cool.
There are so many ways to catch bass right now that is is hard to begin. I am trying to get out right at daylight and get on the Topwater bite in the shallows. We have some great flooded weeds, aquatic grass, and beany bushes now that all hold fish. The cover is holding lots of spawning bass and you can cast back behind the weeds like the Pond weed and get a bite before it gets hung in the weeds. If you don't get a bite, just hop it over and possibly get a bite on the outside edge of the weeds. Just don't be afraid of casting behind the great cover or you will be losing out. Other baits that are productive are the Buzzbaits, Frogs, and weightless Flukes. If there is cloud cover the topwater bite can be awesome, but it is not necessary. With having new beds being made, bass dropping eggs, and wads of fry all in the same area, there are days when you can catch bass on the Topwater all day long. It can be slow, but it can pay off really well.
Some days, by mid morning or so, I will go to a shallow diving crankbait in a shad color and focus on secondary points. A weightless fluke or one with a small split shot a few inches from the fluke in the White Ice or a Shad color is working well also. I am fishing the Flukes fairly fast on the points. A lot of people are also using Drop Shots and Jigging Spoons in the deeper water to catch large amounts of small bass. Some of the bigger bass are being caught on DD-22's or Carolina rigs in about 15 ft. of water. Plastics like lizards and creature baits rigged Texas style are working well in the heavy timber along with a Shaky head with a Zoom trick worm in Spicy Craw. One of our favorite baits right now if we don't have a lot of wind is the Wacky Rig with a straight worm in Watermelon/Red, Watermelon/Candy, Green Pumpkin/Green flake, and Spicy Craw. It looks like we will have a spawn for a few more weeks although a lot of them will be caught in about 5 - 10 ft. of water.
May and June can be some really fun fishing on Lake Fork, I just love this time of the year. We will continue to use the Topwater Baits and Buzzbaits on a daily basis as there will lots of bass guarding the fry. We will also start using a lot more of the White or Shad colored Flukes or Magic Shads, sometimes fished on a double rig. Nothing like getting two bass on at the same time! This is the time of the year when we will also start moving out more towards the points and some of the creek channels using Texas Rigs, Jigs, and Carolina Rigs. The Crankbait bite will just keep getting better also.
Around the first full moon in June, I will start my night fishing on Lake Fork. Day fishing will be good also, but I love night fishing around the full moon when the bass will move up in the shallows to feed at night. We prefer to fish areas of the lake that are shallow water with deep water access. For the night fishing, Spinnerbaits and Buzzbaits can be really good, but my overall favorite is Jigs and big Worms in Blue Fleck, Black/Blue, and Black/Neon.
We hope that you will be able to use some of the information that we have provided for you and have a great fishing trip or trips. If you would like to learn more about the techniques that we use, or more about Lake Fork and the patterns of the bass, we hope that you will give us a call or email us and book your trip. Our goal is to help you catch more bass or bigger bass, but we also book Crappie and Sandbass trips upon request. Come June, we will be booking 1/2 night trips for Crappie fishing from 7:00 p.m. - 12:00 and we will fillet and bag your catch. We will book for Sandbass anytime and we fillet and bag those for you also. If you are wanting to have a fish fry, give us a call and we will do our best to help you get enough Sandbass or Crappie to fill your limit. Individuals or group trips welcome at all times.
Please don't forget about water safety! Also, use your sunscreen, drink lots of water and wear a cap or hat and sunglasses!
Tight Lines and Big Bass,
Barbara and Mark Stevenson
Lake Fork Guide Service
Well, here we are… finally getting some rain. Some very well needed rain, but we still could use a lot more. There are plenty of ramps for launching. However, if you haven’t been on the lake in a while, you really need to be careful. There are still stumps just barely under the surface that can do a lot of damage. Or, to be on the safe side, just hire us to guide you and that way you don’t even have to go looking for the fish!
Last week was really nice. Finally the fall feed was on and should continue till the middle of December. Tons of shad and lots of schooling bass are in the creeks and on the sides of points. We don’t have much grass this year so you have to hunt the schools down around the creeks and timber. That is unless you are lucky enough to be close when they come up to the top. Last week we boated 232 bass in seven days, and just had one client in the boat all seven days. We lost about 50 bass, but overall, I call that some pretty good catching.
With the water cooling off the big bass will start showing up on a regular basis. Water temperature has been about 62 to 64 degrees in the areas that we are fishing. A lot of the big bass are going to be caught on jigs and worms in the shallower water (5 ft. – 15 ft.) and on spoons and jigs in deeper water (15ft. – 25 ft.), and should really get going anytime now.
We didn’t have any really big bass last week, but we really didn’t fish for the bigger ones. But we did have a lot of the 3 to 5 pound bass that Lake Fork is famous for. Everybody had lots of fun with just getting the bite and fighting these strong bass to the boat.
We are again offering our crappie special for this fall. That’s $325.00 for 1 – 3 people and we furnish all the tackle and baits. We also fillet your catch and bag them up for you to take home to enjoy. In fact, we are getting ready to go crappie fishing this Friday. Should be lots of fun! The Yellow bass and Sand bass are doing great also. Catching a lot on jigging spoons.
CHRISTMAS IS GETTING CLOSE, and we offer great gift certificates that will make a wonderful gift for the angler that is just learning to fish or the seasoned angler. Anglers love it when they can just fish and not have to search for the fish or run the trolling motor… especially when it is windy!
Call and book a trip for bass or crappie if you want to have some fun. We still have some good weekend days open plus during the week for the last of November and December. We are now booking for spring also, so check your calendars and give us a call or email us. Be safe on the water and hope you have great fishing trips this fall and winter.
Mark and Barbara Stevenson
Yes, it’s hot, but so is the bass fishing! Just like the last time Lake Fork got low, the fish kept biting through the summer. We have been catching 18 – 30 bass on our ½ day morning trips. Most people are not fishing all day, so most of our day fishing trips start at daylight and finish about 11:00a.m. You still need plenty of water, sunscreen, sunglasses, and a cap or hat. If you plan a fishing trip or any activity outdoors right now, you can start by drinking plenty of water the day and night before. It is very important to keep your body hydrated! While doing whatever activity, if you start getting a headache or feeling bad, you need to get out of the sun for awhile. This is why night fishing can be more enjoyable during the summer months.
I think this good fishing will last through the summer, and a lot of fun is to be had. The neat thing about the day fishing is that we are not fishing over 12 foot of water, and catching some big bass. That’s Florida strain bass for you! There are also a lot of bass in the deep water if that is what you like to do. When we have gone out deep, it is almost like fall and winter fishing where you can catch bass, crappie, cat fish, yellow bass and sand bass all on jigging spoons. We like to use jigs and worms out deep right now and you can eliminate most everything except the bass and an occasional catfish.
Most of our bass are coming on Texas rigged 8” worms and flukes when in breaking fish. The majority of our bass have been over 3 lbs., in fact, we are having a hard time catching under the slot bass. We are night fishing this week with us just being past the full moon. Now would be a good time to book a night trip for the last of July and August. We have been out at night and it’s a lot cooler and some great catching. Most of the better bass are coming on 10” worms in blue fleck or black and blue, and a 3/8 oz. Johnson Custom Baits jig in 3’ – 8’, on points and timber.
August and September are going to be really good with the lake down and I don’t think it will be up until October starts and we get some weather out of the Gulf. October and November always offer up some great fishing on Lake Fork. These are our two busiest months in the fall and the bass, crappie, yellow bass, and sand bass are very cooperative.
We would love for you to fish with us in the fall and if you are locked into having to fish just weekends, try to book as soon as you can, as the weekends always book up first. We will have a new post soon after we do these night fishing trips this week and let you know what is happening. If you are an experienced angler, you don’t have to fish just around the full moon. The dark of the moon can be a lot of fun also, so you might want to give it a chance.
Have a great and safe summer! We look forward to seeing you on the lake!
Mark and Barbara Stevenson
Special February 2011 Report
February guide trip special: $300.00 for a full day and $175.00 for a half day guide trip.
We understand that the economy is slow , so we are rolling back our prices so that you can come to Lake Fork and have a great guide trip to catch the bass of a lifetime, or learn new techniques. Enjoy this special while it lasts.
Super Bowl will be over on Sunday and we all hope to enjoy a great game and good commercials! Most of the snow and ice will be gone, and the sun will start warming the water. We have already seen 54 degree water in some areas of the lake, so at least we had a start before this weather hit. From the end of the second week to the end of February, we will make it easy to get in an early spring trip and save some money. Book a trip for the month of February and it will only cost you $300.00 for a full day trip, and $175.00 for a half day trip.
The last 2 weeks of February should be really good. With this much cold weather now, the bass will really be starting to get active with any warm-up and there has been no pressure on the bass for 3 weeks. Come fishing with us and you can expect to be using Rattletraps, Spinnerbaits, Jerkbaits, and Chatterbaits for some fine fishing and a chance to catch a giant pre-spawn bass.
We really don’t have any kind of report for this last week because of the brutal cold. Mark had to cancel his Wednesday trip, and rescheduled it for later in the month. We both fished Friday and Saturday, and the bass bit good on Friday around the timber. Saturday slowed down, but still caught some around the stumps with grass around them. The fish were caught both days on Traps, Drop-Shot, and Wacky Worms.
The last two weeks of February will be pretty good this year because the lake is down and there will be lots of the tree lines in the right depth to gang up prespawn bass. It should be really good for casting those moving baits. March will be March, as usual! There will be great days and some slow days, but every day you will have a chance to catch a fish of a lifetime. Spend all of your time in 12 foot or less and you will be in the zone.
The moving baits such as Spinnerbaits, Traps, Chatterbaits, and Suspending Jerkbaits will help you locate the active areas. Then you can switch to Jigs, Lizards, and soft plastic Jerkbaits. Also A light Carolina Rig, which you can really work an area over with really well.
Give us a call and we will take you out and show you how to locate the big Lake Fork bass! Let’s go fishing!
Mark and Barbara
After thought – Barbara’s broken wrist is healing and she needs to go fishing to get her strength back. What a rehab program!