Lakecaster Online

White Bass
By John Plumb

Will it happen?
As the spawn comes near, the one burning question is: "Will we get enough rain to supply the white bass with favorable conditions?" At this time, it doesn't appear that it will happen. Missing the one key ingredient for such conditions, it is anyone's guess. Rain supplies flow to the river and creeks, which attract the fish to do their baby making.

Certainly, there will be at least some activity of spawning, but where that may be is the piece of the puzzle we will all be looking for. With conditions the way they are, and no change in sight in the foreseeable future, my guess would be the river itself, but not so much in the upper reaches of the Trinity. Local rains will promote some flow of the major creeks, if we get any.

Of course the river has flow. It may well be the only water there is to prospect in. I have seen this before, and in those dry years, fishing was spotty, and short lived. Most of the action was in the stretch of river between Hwy. 19 and the Big Eddy, and without any discernible pattern to speak of. This will make it tough at best.

Low water years make it near impossible for boating beyond the eddy, unless you are "river-wise." Boating to the Big Eddy is fairly safe, but beyond is not recommended for the weak of spirit, or heart. Certainly, there are many, many boat eating hazards to negotiate that supply only one chance. Elsewise, you are in trouble, and there is no help for the hapless.

Location of the fish will be mostly by electronics due to the large expanse of water. Normal casting around will be out due to the area needed to be covered. Like I said, it will be tough. I expect rattle traps will be the bait for covering lots of water, and jigs when some fish are found. Concentrations will be sparse, unless you just get lucky.

Now, if it rains, things will change more to the normal side. Any local rain sufficient to run off will turn on the creeks, but with diminished flow, this won't last long. Get it while it's hot, in other words. The only good part of this will be an early return to the lake, say March or April, instead of May.

Still, the trip up-river is worth the time and effort. I've gone up and returned fishless, but still had a wonderful time. The river holds more beauty than an ice chest full of fish. Truly a wilderness adventure. Many types of wildlife will witness your trespass into their domain. Take your camera.

Make sure your boat is working perfectly. This is no place for a shake down cruise. If you have a single doubt, don't do it. You'll find little to no help if you have trouble. You will not find a boat shop up there, nor gas, or food, or anything else that resembles civilization. Make sure. See you up there.

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