Spy'd up some bass this morning...

Thread starter #1
Went to my "home" lake (HG Lathem) this morning, after stopping at Amos' BBQ for a sausage and egg biscuit, of course. There were 6-7 trailers and a couple kayaks there already when I got there about 0750, which is unusual for a weekday.

It was a nice partial overcast with many clouds. I went around to a spot on the main creek channel where I had good luck previously. I ended up marking a lot of fish there, and they were chasing bait like crazy on top. I wasted some time trying to cast to the fish with a topwater bait, but they were up and down too fast. So I tied on a new ghost pearl spinbait 80, on a new rod & reel I just bought specifically for finesse, and proceeded to catch about a dozen good bass - no dinks, all good bass, including my personal best spot and the best LM I've caught in years. Every one of them on that same spybait. Nothing else.

I estimate most of the fish were around 1.5-2 lbs, but the spot and big LM were both at least 4 lbs. I am sold on this lure. Yes, I am. I was fishing it as slow and deep as I could, where it drops steeply to the channel, not by the bank. Try it.
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Thread starter #4
I cast out on 8 lb flouro, and let it sink for a 20-Mississippi count, then reel slow. Maybe twitch the rod tip a bit, 1" - 2", as often not. They hit right when you start reeling most often. You have to keep a tiny bit of tension while it is sinking, because it looks so cool sinking, fish bust it hard sometimes. LOL I know that fat spot did, yikes, he almost yanked the rod out of my hand.

It's a 7' ML Fast with spinning reel. I guess a drop shot rod. StC Mojo Yak I got from Ryan at Hammonds.

Don't horse the fish, neither, because the lures have thin #8 trebles. Hook set is just "reel" basically. I lost a real fatty today pulling too hard. I also noticed that the fish would almost all get foul-hooked by the rear treble, and I would have to get one out of the mouth and the other out of the gill plate or side. Heck, its hard to tie 'em on without poking yourself.

PS These lures are as high as giraffe nutz, $14, so try not to cry when you lose one. I absolutely will not throw one around timber. A GON member has the best price, PM if you want to...
 

Coenen

Senior Member
Nice fish! I may have to finally pop for a couple of these dealies. Every time I've been up on that lake I've marked fish out on those ledges, and not been real sure on how to target them effectively.

You're right, too; they seem to hang up right on those big depth breaks, boat positioning becomes so important. A bit too close to shore, you're too shallow, and in all of that grass and crap; a bit too far out, and you're in the abyss. I'm really taken with that lake.
 

spkoli

Senior Member
I was there on Thursday trying the spinbait, but I had 0 luck with it. Maybe I am using the wrong color (green gill). I have a ghost shad now in my tackle, so the next time I am out. I will try that.
 
Thread starter #7
I'm going back tomorrow AM (and maybe this afternoon if I get the dang grass cut) and will try 'em again. The 2 confidence lures for me are the green pumpkin finesse worm (thanks @weagle ) and the spinbait. The ghost pearl has teethmarks all over it now. The sonar is an essential tool, but I am still learning how to interpret what I see on the screens.
 
Thread starter #8
Truck is loaded for tomorrow morning. Biscuits and fishin' - my 2nd favorite morning indulgence. I will be trying the spinbait again, and also another slow-sinking bait - the good ole Rat-L-Trap. Bought 2 cheap at WM while I was in thar yestiddy. Also dug out some countdown Rapalas I had in an old unused tackle box from fishing for hybrids on Clarks Hill ages ago (put new Gamakatsu trebles on 'em). Wish I could find my old Cardinal 4. I know I have one and can't put my hands on it (I did find the extra spool).
 
Thread starter #11
I caught 5 "keepers" and a few dinks (all released). Four LM and one spot, all on the spybait and one drop shot with a green pumpkin finesse worm. Biggest was another fat 3-4 lb fish.
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Thread starter #13
Gonna try to spy 'em in the AM I think. Unfortunately, tragedy struck the last time out: I lost the rear hook and prop off my lucky ghost pearl color Spinbait 80. I am very sad. :confused:

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I had a big fish on and all of a sudden - nothing. DOH! I suppose it was too much to expect it to handle about 2 dozen good bass without checking the screws. I will be checking them from now on, after every fish. I did buy 2 more GP color on ebay for $$, but have some other colors to try tomorrow.

I've also been working with Lowrance support to get the lake-mapping Navionics SonarChart Live feature to work properly on my Hook2-5 sonar (I'm really happy with it otherwise, and it is the reason I am suddenly catching more fish). In the meantime I loaded the C-Map Genesis free "social map" of the lake, and it isn't 100%, but there is good detail, way better than the Navionics canned map for Lathem, which is a joke - a bad joke - it is so wrong. I got good maps of Lathem, Hickory Log Creek, and Lanier for free on the Hook2 now.

Tomorrow is also road test for the trailer.. I fixed up my utility/ATV trailer to carry 2 kayaks. I copied the idea from a Thomaston friend when we shuttled the Flint one day. A friend wants to fish the 'hooch Monday, and my shoulders are tired of lifting my Nucanoe up on roof-mounted Yakima bars for transport. So I did a quick mod, with 2 8 foot pressure treated 2x8s, and some hardware. Each board has 3 eye bolts for tie-downs, and is bolted to the trailer rails.
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This will help me get in more trips with fellow yak anglers, because I have a good shuttle solution. Tight lines.
 
Thread starter #14
No sign of hurricane Florence on Lathem this morning, hardly any wind, mostly blue sky, I practically had the place all to myself, just me and my kayak.

Right off the bat, I headed to one of my waypoints where I caught fish previously. This time I had a decent topo map on my Lowrance from Genesis C-Map.

I had a brand-new ghost pearl color spinbait 80 tied on on one spin rod, a drop shot rigged trick worm on the other spin rod (black ruby color, nose-hooked not wacky). I had a bone Whopper Plopper on my casting rod, but hardly threw it. Fish were chasing bait on top all over, more than usual - a good sign. Water temp was 81F surface according to the Lowrance.

The first cast in, I caught a good fish. Not a thing to do but catch another, as the saying goes, and I did, and then another. The fish were biting really well, to put it mildly. I caught a half-dozen good bass (all LM) in that first spot. It was awesome. I went down a little ways to another spot and the LM were biting there, too.

I stopped counting at 15. I had a nice fish on, got him to the boat, and the dang knot broke and the bass got away with my spybait in his mouth. DANGIT! That fish jumped twice by the boat, and threw it out, I saw it splash, and waved "bye bye". DOH! That color is real hard to find, and I just got it. Oh well. I sure caught the heck out of them before I lost it. The smallest fish I caught on it was a 1 lb spot, and he pulled like the dickens. Moral of the story, especially with light flouro line, is re-tie after a fish often, and make sure the screws aren't backing out. Another expensive lesson.

I tied on another color spinbait, but it seemed like the fish were not as keen for it, but I did catch some more on it. I decided to try the drop shot on the way to the dock. Was about to pack it in when I saw a bunch of arches on the sonar - dropped that worm and watched it fall, saw a fish follow down... felt the bite, let her take it, BAM! Fish on! Picture perfect drop shot and my PB large mouth! I est 5 lbs? Maybe 4.5? I have no scale, but I can't recall ever catching a bigger one.

My hat is off to Duo Realis for the Spinbait lure. There are others like it, sure, but I kinda like this one. All the fish were caught on it today, except for the one on the worm.

Here are a few pics of some of my bigger victims (all fish released). ibass3.jpg

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