Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster

WK Outdoors – Fish Offshore for Post-spawn Largemouth Bass

wk outdoors bassFRANKFORT, Ky. (7/5/13) – The wet and unseasonably cool weather pattern lately seems more consistent with Derby week than with the upcoming Fourth of July holiday.
 
Chris Hickey, black bass research biologist for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, said the cool weather delayed the largemouth bass spawn a couple of weeks, but now everything is on schedule as we head into the heat of summer.
 
He said anglers report largemouth bass gathering on the channel ledges on Kentucky and Barkley lakes.
 
Summer fishing for largemouth bass frustrates many anglers, although anglers themselves are usually the source of the problem. The anglers often don't change the presentation or places they fish from the spring season, although their summer catch often consists of a few small male "buck" bass.
 
Forget fishing the visible cover along the bank and instead concentrate on off-shore structures such as channel ledges, submerged islands, humps and long points to catch bass during the day in July and August. Studying a map of the underwater features reveals these fish-holding structures. Anglers should plan on probing several during a day of fishing.
 
"I look for three things for deep ledge fishing," said Ryan Oster, federal aid coordinator for the fisheries division of Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. "The first is the presence of bait, second is stumps and third is current. Mussel beds on the ledge are also a big help."
 
Oster, formerly western fisheries district biologist who helped manage Kentucky and Barkley lakes, prefers deep running crankbaits, 7- to 10-inch straight-tailed worms rigged on Shakey heads and heavy football jig and trailer combinations to fish ledges from 12 to 25 feet deep in these lakes.
 
"I like the Sexy Shad color for clear water and the chartreuse Sexy Shad for stained water in my deep crankbaits," Oster said. "Typically, bass want it raking across the bottom. On some days, the fish want a slow and steady retrieve and on others, they want it fast. Mix it up until they hit."
 
Boat positioning is important to keep these lures crawling on the bottom and across those underwater ledges and humps. Some anglers use marker buoys to visualize the ledge or hump.
 
Slowly crawl a Shakey head rig along the bottom, stop it every few feet and shake the rod tip to wiggle the worm and entice bass. Anglers fishing jigs may also work the bottom, but many "stroke" a heavy football jig by ripping it off the bottom with their rod tip and letting the lure fall on a slack line. Trophy largemouths often hit the jig on the fall.
 
Use at least 1/2-ounce of weight to get down on the deep structure. Many opt for 3/4-ounce or 1-ounce jigs. Shakey worms in green pumpkin, black or purple work well in deep water. Black jigs in combination with blue, purple, brown or chartreuse produce deep bass.
 
During the hottest times of the year, largemouth bass suspend over the ledge or hump and ignore lures worked on bottom. A swimbait works well for suspended bass.
 
Pearl-colored swimbaits with shades of gray, blue and light purple work well. Fish the swimbait just above bottom rigged on a 1/4-ounce or 3/8-ounce head as heavier heads deadens the lure's action. Oster prefers 5-inch swimbaits.
 
Points that extend well out into the lake are high percentage spots for summer largemouth bass. Jigs slowly crawled across the point in water 15 to 25 feet deep draws strikes. Points with stumps or chunk rock on them hold the most fish.
 
The best ledge fishing is on Kentucky Lake, Lake Barkley and Barren River Lake. Most lakes across Kentucky have long extended points and many have underwater humps.
 
Get off the bank and catch huge bass on the hottest days.
 
Author Lee McClellan is an award-winning associate editor for Kentucky Afield magazine, the official publication of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. He is a life-long hunter and angler, with a passion for smallmouth bass fishing.
 
WK Outdoors
Information provided by Lee McClellan (Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife)

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

3/13 - 16
button coupons

Stock Report

1 DOW 18,053.71
+23.50 (0.13%)    
2 S&P 2,088.77
+6.89 (0.33%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,806.86
+33.39 (0.70%)    
3/13 - 16
3/13 - 16
button classifieds

In Other News...

Mustangs Fall to Host Graves County in Eagle Holiday Classic

MAYFIELD, Ky. (12/26/14) — Muhlenberg County came up short in its bid to knock off host Graves County in the Eagle… Read More

Muhlenberg County to Compete in Ashland Invitational

ASHLAND, Ky. (12/26/14) — After compiling a 1-2 record in the Graves County-hosted Eagle Holiday Classic, Muhlenberg… Read More
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week

December 24, 2014 12111

Christmas Eve Bloody Brawl Erupts on Dulin Street

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis
December 25, 2014 8092

Gift Returns Done Right

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
December 25, 2014 5356

Arrests Made After Dulin Avenue Christmas Eve…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Officer C.P. Haynie
December 19, 2014 3988

Vehicle Fire Causes Traffic Back-Up on Pennyrile

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis
December 23, 2014 3968

Couple's Alleged Dispute over Blanket Leads to…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 25, 2014 3647

Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted - December 25, 2014

in Video by Crime Stoppers
December 23, 2014 3444

Alleged Theft at Walmart Sends Two to Jail

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 22, 2014 3434

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Dec. 22, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
December 20, 2014 3255

KET’s Kentucky Life Segment to Feature Old…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
December 23, 2014 3025

Disturbance Results in Vehicle, Foot Pursuit,…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Officer Tyler Russell

Stories Trending Today

December 24, 2014 12111

Christmas Eve Bloody Brawl Erupts on Dulin Street

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis
December 25, 2014 8092

Gift Returns Done Right

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
December 25, 2014 5356

Arrests Made After Dulin Avenue Christmas Eve…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Officer C.P. Haynie
December 25, 2014 3647

Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted - December 25, 2014

in Video by Crime Stoppers
December 26, 2014 1851

5-Year-Old Boy Kills Buck/Doe

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Randy Adams
December 24, 2014 1299

Winter Superfoods for Optimal Health

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
December 24, 2014 1230

Jobless Rates down in 119 Counties in November…

in General News For All Sites by Kim Brannock
December 25, 2014 1198

How to Create Your Household Budget

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
December 26, 2014 1194

Grab the Best Buys This January

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
December 25, 2014 1152

SurfKY Spotlight: Hudson Service Center

in Video by Gary Gates, SurfKY News

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
Corporate Office & Studio
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss