HOTSPOTS: Freshwater – October 2019

SPORTSMAN’S DAYBOOK-Tides & Prime Times – October 2019
September 24, 2019
HOTSPOTS: Saltwater – October 2019
September 24, 2019


• • • SPOTLIGHT • • •
Location: Lake Fork
Hotspot: Sticky Branch Point
GPS: N 32 54.348, W 95 39.1679
(32.9058, -95.6528)

Lake Fork

Lake Fork Sticky Branch Point

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: “Spoons, Carolina rigs with a Grandebass Air Tail Flash in sexy shad color or a Victo-ry Jig by Finch Nasty Jigs in peanut butter jelly color with a Grandebass Mega Claw trailer in trophy hunter color, spinnerbaits, swimbaits, small crankbaits”
Contact: Lance Vick
[email protected]
Tips: October is start of the fall feeding frenzy. The shorter days and winter coming on seems to trigger fish to eat. The fall turnover is done, making the water good for all depths of fishing. Shallow fish are good on spinnerbaits, swimbaits, and small crankbaits. Look for grass beds, creek channels and points. Deep fish can be found in points and humps that are loaded with shad. Catch them on spoons, Carolina rigs with a Grandebass Air Tail Flash in sexy shad or a Victory Jig by Finch Nasty jigs in peanut butter jelly color with a Grandebass Mega Claw trailer in trophy hunter color. Best bite pattern is shallow early, then deeper later in the day. Good fishing to all!
• • •
Location: Caddo Lake
Hotspot: Main Lake Flats (Texas side)
GPS: N 32 42.102, W 94 4.47
(32.7017, -94.0745)

Caddo Lake

Caddo Lake Main Lake Flats (Texas side)

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: Spinnerbaits, top water lures, flukes
Contact: Caddo Lake Guide Service/Paul Keith
[email protected]
Tips: This month you are going to start seeing the bass pushing and schooling on large schools of shad on the 3- to 4-foot deep flats that are near the main channel. I usually look to the flats that have some type of vegetation like pads or hydrilla mats. Top water lures like buzzbaits, pop r’s, and spooks work well on the schools here. I keep a watermelon or white colored weightless Texas rigged fluke handy for fishing some of the thicker grasses in these areas. A white or shad colored 3/8 oz. spinnerbait with nickel colored tandem willow blades is a great way to cover lots of water fast on the flats.

Location: Lake Conroe
Hotspot: Main Lake
GPS: N 30 26.76, W 95 36.3599
(30.4460, -95.6060)

Lake Conroe

Lake Conroe Main Lake

Species: Catfish
Best Baits: Stink bait and cut shad
Contact: Richard Tatsch
[email protected]
Tips: “The bigger blue catfish will start biting pretty good with the water temperature coming down. The deeper ledges will hold some bigger fish. I’ll Carolina rig a piece of cut bait along the ledge with a 1 oz. weight and some stink bait with a #8 treble hook. Start off around 12 feet deep and go to 30 feet! Good luck and good fishing! Bank Access: Stowaway Marina”

Location: Lake Fork
Hotspot: Coffee Creek
GPS: N 32 56.214, W 95 30.4259
(32.9369, -95.5071)

Lake Fork

Lake Fork Coffee Creek

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: Texas-rigged Baby Brush Hog in watermelon red, Zara spooks, frogs, swimbaits, Rat-L-Traps
Contact: Doug Shampine
[email protected]
Tips: October is an outstanding month to fish on Lake Fork! Bass are feeding aggressively get-ting ready for winter. The water temperature is cooling, and the bass will move back to the shallow areas, chasing shad, especially along the vegetation you can find in Burch, Glade Run-ning and Coffee creeks. My favorite bait to throw this time of the year is a Texas rigged baby brush hog in watermelon red. Target grass or vegetation along the outside edges. Other baits that will produce will be the frog early, 3” white swimbaits and chrome Rat-L-Traps. If you like fishing the lower end of the lake look for schooling bass in the mouth of Chaney, spooks, swimbaits and Rat-L-Traps will catch these bass as well.

Location: Lake Livingston
Hotspot: Trinity River near Riverside
GPS: N 30 50.874, W 95 22.536
(30.8479, -95.3756)

Lake Livingston

Lake Livingston Trinity River near Riverside

Species: White Bass, Hybrid Striper
Best Baits: Strike King Sexy Shad lipped crankbait, live or fresh shad dead shad / trolled pet spoons
Contact: David S. Cox, Palmetto Guide Service
[email protected]
Tips: “Without question, the most under-utilized fantastic fishing action in October is fishing for white bass and monster hybrids on the Trinity River near Bethy Creek Resort on Lake Living-ston. Typically, in the fall the river level here is low and “green.” Under these conditions great fishing will be happening from White Rock to north of Harmon Creeks. For several years now I have been putting customers consistently on monster hybrids mixed in with good numbers of whites in this region of Lake Livingston in October. This is the area the Lake Livingston Jr. Divi-sion Lake record Hybrid was caught by Hunter Henry of Huntsville, Texas while fishing with Palmetto Guide Service. Key in on throwing the crankbaits in the major cuts early morning. Al-so, you can fish live shad about 4ft. down under a Legend popping cork. Keep an eye out for schooling fish. Later, when the sun gets high, troll the pet spoon behind a medium diving crankbait. You will catch the big hybrids on the spoon or the crankbait. It is common to catch hybrids 17” to 24”” here. Remember a hybrid white has to be 18”” or more to be legal. This pattern is by far the most underused fantastic fishing on Lake Livingston. Lake Livingston con-sists of over 90,000 surface acres of water and 450 miles of shoreline.”

Location: Lake Sam Rayburn
Hotspot: Farmer’s Cove
GPS: N 31 7.032, W 94 5.532
(31.1172, -94.0922)

Lake Sam Rayburn

Lake Sam Rayburn Farmer’s Cove

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: Shallow crankbaits, spinnerbaits, swim baits.
Contact: Mike Knight
[email protected]
Tips: Temperatures are falling, and shad are migrating. Lots of bass will move shallow and start following the shad. Vegetation in shallow pockets from the middle to the back of all the creeks will hold lots of bass. There are no bad creeks to fish on Rayburn in the fall.

Location: Toledo Bend Lake
Hotspot: Lanan Creek Area
GPS: N 31 31.35, W 93 39.7019
(31.5225, -93.6617)

Toledo Bend Lake

Toledo Bend Lake Lanan Creek Area

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: Crankbaits, spinnerbaits, small swimbaits
Contact: Mike Knight
[email protected]
Tips: Water temperatures are finally starting to drop. Shad schools are starting to migrate to-ward the backs of major creeks. The bass will follow them. Use your electronics to find the bait and you will be on the fish. “ Match the hatch” with shad type lures: crankbaits, spinnerbaits and small swimbaits. San Miguel, San Patricio and Lanan creeks are a good bet.

Location: Toledo Bend North
Hotspot: Upper Main Lake
GPS: N 31 46.938, W 93 52.2059
(31.7823, -93.8701)

Toledo Bend North

Toledo Bend North Upper Main Lake

Species: White Bass
Best Baits: Slab spoons, tail spinners, Rat-L-Traps
Contact: Greg Crafts, Toledo Bend Guide Service and Lake Cottages
[email protected]
Tips: The days are getting shorter and the water temperature is starting to fall. When this happens, it triggers a natural instinct in the fish to start feeding heavy and bulking up for the coming winter. The white bass will start migrating to the north end of the lake, holding on the main river channel sandbars. The whites will be stacked up and it’s not unusual to limit out in no time at all. The limit is 25 per person. You’ll see a lot of schooling activity. Look for the seagulls diving on the bait fish that the whites push to the surface. Keep a top water plug or Rat-L-Trap handy when they’re schooling as well as this is an incredible time to catch white bass!


Bass University




• • • SPOTLIGHT • • •
Location: Richland Chambers Lake
Hotspot: 309 Flats
GPS: N 31 59.04, W 96 7.9836
(31.9840, -96.1331)

Richland Chambers Lake

Richland Chambers Lake 309 Flats

Species: White Bass and Hybrid Striper
Best Baits: 1 oz. silver or chartreuse slab
Contact: Royce Simmons
[email protected]
Tips: October is one of my favorite months as the long hot Texas summer comes to an end and most all species of fish go on an aggressive fall bite. The white bass and hybrid striper bite is sometimes one of the best of the year as the fish are feeding up for the cooler months ahead! Check out the main lake points and the 309 Flats for the Whites. The Long Arm Branch point can be especially good on both on morning and afternoon bites. A 1 oz. silver or chartreuse slab is hard to beat and can be bounced off the bottom or ripped across the surface depending on when, where and how the fish are feeding.
• • •
Location: Bachman Lake
Hotspot: Webb Chapel Road Bridge
GPS: N 32 51.5699, W 96 51.3899
(32.8595, -96.8565)

Bachman Lake

Bachman Lake Webb Chapel Road Bridge

Species: Largemouth Bass and Crappie
Best Baits: Bass: spinnerbaits and Rat-L-Traps | Crappie: minnows and jigs
Contact: Carey Thorn
[email protected]
Tips: For bass, throw spinnerbaits and Rat-L-Traps along the weed lines. Crappie are under the bridge this time of year. Minnows and jigs are your best bet right now.

Location: Cedar Creek Lake
Hotspot: Main Lake Docks
GPS: N 32 18.534, W 96 7.194
(32.3089, -96.1199)

Cedar Creek Lake

Cedar Creek Lake Main Lake Docks

Species: Crappie
Best Baits: 1/16th oz. crappie jigs
Contact: Jason Barber
[email protected]
Tips: This month we are “dock shooting” for crappie! Fish all deeper shady docks in 5’ to 12’ of water by shooting 1/16th oz. crappie jigs under the shade-covered areas.

Location: Eagle Mountain Lake
Hotspot: Fifty to 300 Yards North of Dam
GPS: N 32 52.709, W 97 28.044
(32.8785, -97.4674)

Eagle Mountain Lake

Eagle Mountain Lake Fifty to 300 Yards North of Dam

Species: White bass
Best Baits: Slab with a fly 12-in. above it
Contact: Johnny Stevens
[email protected]
Tips: This area just north of the dam is a series of humps and ridges and ditches. Use your elec-tronics to look on top of these ridges and along the slopes. When you locate fish anchor over them and use a vertical jigging method on them. If you prefer to cast to them. Use a slab and fly combo and let it go to the bottom and hop it back to the boat.

Location: Fayette County Res.
Hotspot: South East Trees
GPS: N 29 56.5679, W 96 43.4039
(29.9428, -96.7234)

Lake Fayette

Lake Fayette South East Trees

Species: Catfish
Best Baits: CJ’s punch bait, shad
Contact: Weldon Kirk
[email protected]
Tips: Water depths here range from 1-12 feet here and this hot spot has lots of underwater stumps. Chum around the boat and fish straight down with tight lines. Set hook with least movement of rod tip as the bite can be on the lighter side.

Location: Gibbons Creek Reservoir
Hotspot: Employee dock area
GPS: N 30 37.602, W 96 4.5899
(30.6267, -96.0765)

Gibbons Creek Reservoir

Gibbons Creek Reservoir Employee dock area

Species: Catfish
Best Baits: CJ’s punch bait, shad
Contact: Weldon Kirk
[email protected]
Tips: Larger cats hang out at this hot spot at night looking for perch around the lily pads. Using perch or shad, drift a cork by the lily pads and hang on! During the day, fish with punch bait about a foot off the bottom.

Location: Lake Granbury
Hotspot: Hump Near Blue Water Shores
GPS: N 32 23.189, W 97 42.441
(32.3865, -97.7074)

Lake Granbury

Lake Granbury Hump Near Blue Water Shores

Species: Largemouth bass
Best Baits: Spinner baits, rattle traps, top water spooks, white frogs and power worms later in the A.M.
Contact: Michael W. Acosta, Unfair Advantage Charters
Tips: Largemouth bass are schooling with white bass on many areas of the lake. Work points with stick ups and look for bird action.

Location: Granger Lake
Hotspot: Main Lake
GPS: N 30 42.09, W 97 21.042
(30.7015, -97.3507)

Granger Lake

Granger Lake Main Lake

Species: Crappie
Best Baits: Crappie jigs tipped with Berkley Crappie Nibbles
Contact: Tommy Tidwell
[email protected]
Tips: This month is the last month to catch crappie until the spring spawn. They shut off at the end of the month. Right now, the crappie are very fat and feeding heavily. They can be found in shallow water from 4 feet deep to deeper water in the 14-foot range. Use jigs tipped with Berkley Crappie Nibbles. The largest fish will be on shallow structure of any kind. Find the clearest water and they will be there. Don’t worry about fishing early morning. They will bite all day this time of year. Good luck and good fishing.

Location: Lake Lavon
Hotspot: Main Lake Points
GPS: N 33 3.0659, W 96 28.332
(33.0511, -96.4722)

Lake Lavon

Lake Lavon Main Lake Points

Species: White Bass
Best Baits: 1 oz. white slabs, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, plastic worms
Contact: Carey Thorn
[email protected]
Tips: Largemouth Bass: Throw white and chartreuse spinnerbaits early in the morning. Later in the day, switch to crankbaits and worms, concentrating on fishing 15- to 25-foot depths. White Bass: Fish with white slabs in the 10- to 20-foot range on main lake points.

Location: Lake Palestine
Hotspot: Kickapoo Creek
GPS: N 32 16.7939, W 95 29.0219
(32.2799, -95.4837)

Lake Palestine

Lake Palestine Kickapoo Creek

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: Mr. Twister Hawg Frogs, Big Eye Swim Jigs, Big Eye Bass Jigs in black/blue and black/brown/ amber
Contact: Ricky Vandergriff
903-561-7299 or 903-530-2201
[email protected]
Tips: Bass fishing is really good this time of year on Mr. Twister Hawg Frogs in the pads and Big Eye swim jigs in other areas in this hot spot. Along the creek, fish with Big Eye jigs in blk/blue and blk/brown amber.

Location: Lake Ray Roberts
Hotspot: State Park Cove
GPS: N 33 22.295, W 97 1.941
(33.3716, -97.0324)

Lake Ray Roberts

Lake Ray Roberts State Park Cove

Species: Crappie, white bass
Best Baits: Minnows, 3/4 to 1-oz. slabs
Contact: Justin Wilson
[email protected]
Tips: Most of the summer weather is starting to move out and the lowering temperatures and great fishing make October one of the best times of the entire year to be on the lake. The white bass are excellent on main lake points in 25 to 40 feet of water. I like to use a 1 oz, white and chartreuse slab jigged off the bottom where there is a school of feeding fish waiting to eat. The crappie can be found on structure at the same depths as the whites. The bigger crappie are starting to feed better than they have the past few summer months, making it a lot easier to fill the cooler. Jigs are working well, but minnows will be your most consistent bait. When you find a brush pile holding fish you can usually catch quite a few in one spot as long as you fish it diligently and work all around the pile including the edges and different depths of higher or lower brush.

Location: Lake Somerville
Hotspot: Brushy Creek
GPS: N 30 20.94, W 96 33.2039
(30.3490, -96.5534)

Lake Somerville

Lake Somerville Brushy Creek

Species: Catfish
Best Baits: Shad, liver, CJ’s punch bait
Contact: Weldon Kirk
[email protected]
Tips: The lake level is back to near normal now so look for 8- to 10-foot water at this hot spot. Fish on the shallower side if lily pads are showing. In any case, fish near the lily pads with corks and rig to set bait about a foot off the bottom.

Location: Lake Texoma
Hotspot: North Island and Tabletop
GPS: N 33 52.068, W 96 41.67
(33.8678, -96.6945)

Lake Texoma

Lake Texoma North Island and Tabletop

Species: Striped Bass
Best Baits: Top water plugs and Sassy Shad jigs
Contact: Bill Carey
[email protected]
Tips: “The big fish are on the banks early mornings in October. Cast Pencil Poppers and big Chug Bugs for vicious top water strikes in shallow water. Mid-morning, change your lures to 4-in. Sassy Shad on a 1 oz. jig head. Our favorite colors are white glow and chartreuse fleck. Al-ways keep your eyes on the seagulls as they can locate schools of stripers roaming open water.
Live shad fishing is also an excellent way to catch stripers. Locate the fish on the ledges, anchor up and place your bait 3 turns off the bottom. The best depth will an average 30 feet deep. Bank Access: Washita Point and Platter Flats”

Location: Lake Whitney
Hotspot: Striper Point
GPS: N 31 54.966, W 97 23.0579
(31.9161, -97.3843)

Lake Whitney

Lake Whitney Striper Point

Species: Striped Bass
Best Baits: Cut bait and live shad
Contact: Randy Routh
[email protected]
Tips: “With the lake turning over and the fish being a little scattered, cut bait is the ticket right now! Not a fast and furious fight but steady and producing some big fish. Striper Point and other main lake points are great target areas. For this style of fishing it is best to use your real anchor and not try this with Spot Lock on your trolling motor. I use cut gizzard shad, cut the head off at the gut line and the tail off at the gut line, hook the middle section on top and make a long cast, fanning your lines out. Turn your clicker on and free spool with a lot of slack in your line. You can use the head and tail also but you’ll have to change them out sooner if you’re not getting bit on them. The stripers will come by and pick up the bait and make a drag screaming run. Let them run and then engage your reel. When the rod loads up, stick them! Not a bad idea to have a few live threadfins and drop the down over the side of the boat and reel about 2 turns off the bottom in 24’ of water. Don’t go if you have a weak heart as this tends to get exciting!”




• • • SPOTLIGHT • • •
Location: Lake Possum Kingdom
Hotspot: Peanut Patch
GPS: N 32 53.627, W 98 30.998
(32.8938, -98.5166)

Lake Possum Kingdom

Lake Possum Kingdom Peanut Patch

Species: Striped bass
Best Baits: Live shad, jigs, slabs
Contact: Dean Heffner
[email protected]
Tips: Fall is my favorite time of the year. Fish are bulking up for migration and the winter months ahead. This time of year, you could catch a fish of a lifetime. Watch the birds—they can tell you a lot. But the best bait is live shad, taken right from the lake. Next best is downrig-ging and trolling, jigging and slabbing. Stick to basic colors such as white, silver, chartreuse, yellow, etc.
• • •
Location: Lake Alan Henry
Hotspot: Little Grape Creek
GPS: N 33 2.634, W 101 3.7379
(33.0439, -101.0623)

Lake Alan Henry

Lake Alan Henry Little Grape Creek

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: Shad colored crankbaits, shaky heads, spinnerbaits, plastic worms
Contact: Norman Clayton’s Guide Services
[email protected]
Tips: “I love the bass fishing in October because the bass start moving into the shallow water and moving up all the creeks. Move from on creek to the other until you find the bass using the lures above. They will hit nearly anything at this time of the year.”




Location: Lake Amistad
Hotspot: East Bank of Zorro
GPS: N 29 27.674, W 101 02.411
(29.4612, -101.0402)

Lake Amistad

Lake Amistad East Bank of Zorro

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: buzzbaits, frogs
Contact: Stan Gerzsenyl
[email protected]
Tips: Fish peppergrass with white buzzbaits or slow frogs. Action best dawn through mid-morning.




• • • SPOTLIGHT • • •
Location: Canyon Lake
Hotspot: Diver’s Point
GPS: N 29 51.8879, W 98 12.8399
(29.8648, -98.2140)

Canyon Lake

Canyon Lake Diver’s Point

Species: Striped Bass
Best Baits: Zara Spook
Contact: Capt. Steve Nixon, Fishhooks Adventures
[email protected]
Tips: October is top water time on Canyon Lake. Fish the point from 20- to 50-foot deep and look for schools surface-feeding in this area. The Zara Spook is the bait of choice for top water action! Tight lines and fish on!
• • •
Location: Lake Buchanan
Hotspot: Lower Main Lake
GPS: N 30 46.7639, W 98 27
(30.7794, -98.4500)

Lake Buchanan

Lake Buchanan Lower Main Lake

Species: Striped Bass
Best Baits: Live shad
Contact: Clancy Terrill
[email protected]
Tips: “Fish drifting or anchored with live shad from mid-lake to the dam.
Fish 40 to 50 foot of water with baits at 30-foot depth. The lake should still be turning over but will soon stop and, once it does, move to deeper water later in the morning and mid-day to fish the tops of the trees.”

Location: Lake Buchanan
Hotspot: Main Lake Dam Area to Shaw Island
GPS: N 30 46.3199, W 98 25.1399
(30.7720, -98.4190)

Lake Buchanan

Lake Buchanan Main Lake Dam Area to Shaw Island

Species: Striped Bass and White Bass
Best Baits: Live shad, slabs, top water lures
Contact: Ken Milam
[email protected]
Tips: Stripers will be in the main lake area. Look to fish from the dam up to Shaw Island. Early morning there might be some top water action so be sure to come prepared and start the day there. White bass will be anywhere on the lake and be sure to watch for top water action on them too. Later in the day, fish live shad on humps and ridges for stripers or slabs for whites.

Location: Lake LBJ
Hotspot: Contour Hump
GPS: N 30 34.59, W 98 22.6259
(30.5765, -98.3771)

Lake LBJ

Lake LBJ Contour Hump

Species: Bass and Crappie
Best Baits: Crankbaits and spinnerbaits
Contact: Teach ‘Em to Fish Guide Service-Barry Dodd
[email protected]
Tips: October is the month that the water temperature finally falls into the 70’s and marks the beginning of the fall fishing season. Bass and crappie begin moving from the depths of the lake into shallower water and the catching percentages start improving. It is also the time for cool fronts, which are blessings for moderating temperatures but can also produce dangerous winds and storms. Generally, just before a front arrives and as the front is pushing in, fish become more active and feed much more aggressively. This area is a hump defined with several small points and valleys, plenty of vegetation and next to the main river channel. It has enough shal-lower water, mid depths and deeper water to hold fish for long periods of time.


TF&G Gear Book Blowout




• • • SPOTLIGHT • • •
Location: Coleto Creek Lake
Hotspot: Main Lake
GPS: N 28 44.328, W 97 10.326
(28.7388, -97.1721)

Coleto Creek Lake

Coleto Creek Lake Main Lake

Species: Largemouth Bass
Best Baits: 4-in. pearl grub dipped slightly in chartreuse rigged on a 1/2 oz. jig head
Contact: Rocky’s Guide Service
Tips: I love the cooler months for fishing! October can be a great month for fishing and catch-ing. Bass are still feeding hard preparing for winter and fry are getting scarcer. Shad will most likely be their biggest diet so anything shad colored should do the job. Sometimes I take a 1/2 oz. jig head and put on a 4-in. pearl grub dipped slightly in chartreuse. Don’t discount big bites on smaller baits this time of year. Focus on main lake grass or up either river. Coleto is just a great little bass lake and it seems like you can catch fish almost anywhere you go. Not as many pleasure boats this time of year so most places will be peaceful and quiet, just the way we like it!
• • •
Location: Calaveras Lake
Hotspot: Crappie Wall Flats
GPS: N 29 17.286, W98 18.396
(29.2881, -98.3066)

Calaveras Lake

Calaveras Lake Crappie Wall Flats

Species: Freshwater Redfish
Best Baits: Pet Spoon
Contact: Steve Nixon, Fishhooks Adventures
[email protected]
Tips: “Trolling with downriggers set at 10 to 15 foot deep will produce some good catches of Redfish in this area. Tight lines and Fish On!”


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