In case you haven’t been outside this summer, in Texas it is HOT, like really HOT. Most fisherman have already put up their fishing gear and have started getting ready for dove and deer season. However, the “dog days” of summer are a great time to catch bass on deep offshore structure. Lakes such as Fork, Lake O the Pines and Toledo Bend are excellent places to use these tactics. Here are a few tips to help you catch more fish in late summer.
Be prepared to brave the elements. Wear long sleeve moisture wicking clothing, a neck buff, hat and good pair of polarized glasses will make you as comfortable as possible on 100 degree days without having to constantly slather on sunblock. Make sure to stay hydrated and stay away from sugar loaded drinks while on the water.
Use your electronics and fully understand what you are looking at. I run Lowrance HDS 12 Gen 3 Touch units and absolutely love them. Your graphing skills will directly affect how you can find fish on offshore structure.
Topwaters- For great action, early and late in the day you can’t beat a topwater bait. I like the 6th Sense Dogma, Yellow Magic and Spro 65 Frogs . I throw these on 17lb Mono and 50lb braid.
Deep Diving Crankbait- I like the 6th Sense 500DD & 300DD crush in barfish, chartreuse/blue & sexified shad colors. I throw these on an IROD 7’11” crank launcher and use 12-17lb Floro . These baits will get down to 16- 25 foot depending on how far you can cast the bait.
Carolina Rig- I usually prefer 30lb braid on the main line with a ½-1 oz tungsten weight. For the leader I use 17lb mono . On the business end I like a chartreuse pepper ring fry, green pmkn baby paca craw, or 10” plum worm.
Swimbait- These baits come in a huge variety of sizes and colors, so pick what works best on your lake. Make sure you match the hatch to the natural forage base on your lake. On Lake Fork, I throw a 6th Sense Flo Glider for shallower fish, and a Santone Stroker for deeper fish. Both baits have a big profile, but not so big to wear your arms out and break the bank. I throw these on 20lb Floro.
Football Jig- These baits are big fish magnets and can catch fish when nothing else will. I throw a Santone Pro Football Jig in Bass Candy, JC’s Spicy Craw & PB&J. A ½- ¾ ounce jig will be what you need to get the bait down and keep it there. I prefer 20lb Floro for all of my football jig rigs.
In my next blog I will be breaking down each of the 5 baits and techniques listed above in a series to fully explain the where’s and when’s of each of them.
The spring crowds have come and gone and now is a great time for less pressured fishing. Get out on the water and go deep for big Texas summer largemouth.
Good Luck and Tight Lines
Story by Byron Smith