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 email@example.com
Toledo Bend Reservoir Fishing Report
January 24, 2015
Hello, Anglers. There's always something to write about concerning the subject of Toledo Bend. I have had numerous people in recent years ask me how I find enough info each week, 52 weeks a year, to write a column. There's always a fish story, info about fishing regulations, changes in water levels, water safety issues, new fishing tackle, new innovations in the boating/outboard motor industry, wildlife around the lake and numerous other subjects that I have interest in and also I feel interest our readers and fellow anglers. Toledo is a live subject, it is never stagnate and is a living, breathing body of water with many stories to tell. I am blessed to be able to try to tell these week after week. I love this lake! When I drive across the dam on south Toledo, I still get a "kid-like" feeling and I have crossed that dam hundreds of times.
LAKE CONDITIONS: The lake level is 169.5 with both generators running 24 hours at midweek. The water temperature is from 48 to 50 degrees. North Toledo is stained, mid-lake is slightly stained and south Toledo is clear. There are stained conditions in all of the major creeks, especially in the upper 1/3 of the creeks. Colder water temperatures are having some impact on portions of the submerged grasses and are thinning out some areas but there remains large amounts of grass from 4 to 22 feet in many areas.
FISHING REPORTS/BASS: We have had some beautiful days this week but the cold nights are not allowing the water temperatures to move up thus keeping the bass mostly in a winter pattern. It will not be long before we will get into the staging portion of the spawn which is the first migration of bass to the spawning areas. I have cleaned a few smaller bass recently and they are loaded with eggs. The Toledo bass are so fat and healthy...they are beautiful.
I start monitoring the deep drains and ditches that lead into large coves and work these with deep diving crankbaits, 3/4 and one ounce spinnerbaits, Texas and Carolina rigs. I also have excellent Humminbird electronics and these really help to show baitfish and fish as they start to use the drains/ditches. It is common for the bass to move up fairly shallow under ideal weather conditions when there is a 5-7 day warm-up in late January or February. However, they will back off and return to deeper structure following a severe cold front. However, after a warm-up they will again move shallow and this pattern repeats itself until the shallow water starts to warm to the upper 50s and low 60s when the bass start to move in in masses. One thing to look for is the movement of buck bass (small males) to the back end of ditches and back of coves. The small males always move there first and then when weather conditions warm and improve allowing the water temps to reach mid 60s there will be an influx of larger females.
However, an excellent approach is to intercept the large females along a creek or large cove before they get to the shallows. They will often relate to secondary points along the migration route which is an area where I have been able to catch several really large bass over the years. This could be where the ditch/creek comes really close to a grassy point. These areas are not worked as hard by anglers as some of the larger, more obvious points.
Currently, I am not spending a lot of time shallow but I am checking these staging areas a couple of times a week to try to determine the movement of the bass. I'm currently fishing the deep grass with Texas, Caroling rigs as well as deep crank baits. We also are using drop shot, tailspinners and jigging spoons.
CRAPPIE/YELLOW/WHITE BASS: The best crappie report I have heard in a while came from crappie guide, Ernie Cole, who had a party of 4 and they caught over 70 crappie at The Chicken Coop over the weekend. They were using live shinners in 35 to 38 feet. Some were small but they also had several slabs. Yellow and white bass are being caught close to the river and main creeks on spoons and tailspinners.
AUTHOR INFO: Joe Joslin is a syndicated outdoor columnist, tournament angler and pro guide on Toledo and Sam Rayburn. 337-463-3848 or firstname.lastname@example.org and website at http://www.joejoslinoutdoors.com/
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