Joe Joslin has been fishing Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn for 25+ years and has been a full time pro guide on Toledo Bend/Sam Rayburn since 1998.Joe Joslin Outdoors Fishing Guide Service Wholesome atmosphere * Safety minded * Latest equipment. Visit Joe's website at Joe Joslin Outdoors E-Mail Joe at firstname.lastname@example.org
Toledo Bend Reservoir Fishing Report
January 16, 2016
Hello anglers and lovers of the outdoors. It’s time for the 2017 Central Gulf Coast Boat, Sports and RV Show. The Lake Charles Civic Center will host the event which is this Friday through Sunday January 13-15. Hours are Friday from 12 p.m. till 8 p.m., Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Sunday 11:00 a.m. through 5 p.m. There will be scores of boats, RVs, cooking booths, fishing tackle displays, kiddy ponds for children to catch fish plus a huge fish tank with a pro angler giving fishing demonstrations. I will be at the Cajun Tackle booth so come on by and we can exchange fishing stories. I always look forward to talking to fishing friends and meeting new ones.
LAKE CONDITIONS: The cold front that covered south Toledo with a dusting of sleet and snow last Friday also dropped night time lows to the lower 20s. We had nigh time lows in the 20s for three nights which is unusual for this area. It also dropped water temperatures from 58-60 to 49-50 which is a huge change. The good news is that they should rebound this week as a warm front will be impacting our weather. The lake level midweek is 168.16’ with stained conditions in north Toledo, mid-lake is mostly clear and south Toledo is clear to very clear.
BASS FISHING REPORTS: With such weather changes, it has been a challenge to stay on the bass as last week prior to the strong front we were catching fish in 4 to 10 ft. with most in 4-5 feet. Obviously, with three nights in the 20s the fish did move out of the shallows. However, many bass are heavy with roe (eggs) so their nature is to move shallow once they have heavy egg sacks. What many will do is to “stage” as they will hold up in staging areas that are normally in the closest deep water near spawning areas. Look for the first drop off (break line) that is close to spawning flats. North Toledo usually have bass move up to spawn before south Toledo does.
The reason is north Toledo is generally shallower plus the water is usually stained and shallow, stained water warms faster than deep, clear water. That is basically why north Toledo’s bass spawn earlier.
We are currently using both shallow and deep patterns and as the week progresses I expect shallow patterns will become more frequent at least until the next cold front. Our shallow patterns include Bill Lewis’s Rat-L-Trap in Rayburn Red and Toledo Gold, Jerk Baits including Berkley’s new Cutter 90 and 110, Texas rigged Bottom Hoppers, Carolina rigged lizards (Havoc Boss Dogs), shallow crankbaits (Berkley Digger) and Stanley Vibrashaft spinnerbaits.
Deep patterns include Carolina rigs, Umbrella rigs (Alabama rigs), wacky, drop shot, Texas rigged 10 inch Power Worms and spoons. Yes, that’s a lot of different baits and patterns and some days I will go through many of them until I find something that will get fish to bite.
If they are not feeding, I will often use a reaction bait like a Rat-L-Trap, spinnerbait, jerkbait and crankbait.
Many times you can pull one of those baits by a bass and get it to slap the bait and often you can catch it. On soft plastics (C.Rigs/Texas rig/wacky), I will work the bait very slowly with long pauses.
CRAPPIE/YELLOW BASS/WHITE BASS: I talked to Holly Park Marina located near the Chicken Coop and the cold weather moved some fish in The Coop. They are not going nuts yet but several groups Tuesday morning caught 20-25 which is the first positive info from The Coop this winter season. There’s no doubt that the cold weather over the weekend made a difference. A few yellow and white bass are also being caught with the crappie. If you want to catch white bass, contact Greg Craft who guides at Huxley Bay which is north Toledo. The whites are migrating up the lake and will stack up there to spawn late January through early March.
Joe Joslin is a syndicated writer and is published by numerous websites, newspapers and magazines plus is a pro guide on Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn and a TPWD licensed guide since 1998. Contact at email@example.com, 337-463-3848/409-565-1288 and website www.joejoslinoutdoors.com.
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