Lakecaster Online

By Joe Joslin




Hello, Anglers. My favorite fishing hole has been shrinking as Toledo anglers and lake area residents are experiencing some of the lowest water levels in the history of the lake. As of press time, the lake level stood at 163.2'. That is 9' below full pool which is 172' msl (mean sea level). Energy needs and energy contracts have been the reported reasons for the dramatic drawdown. One of most FAQs in recent weeks has been concerning the levels of Toledo and why the need for the drawdown. While the generating schedule has been heavier this year than most (no doubt), we have had a very dry early summer and August/September have also been hot and dry which translates into very little rain since May. The lake levels for late summer/early fall are usually from 167-169' msl.

Last year (2004) my records at the end of September had the lake level at 168.2' while in late September 2003 the level was at 166.9 showing that the lake levels for October 05 is from 3-4 feet below past norms for this season of the year. However, while the low water level does make navigating the lake a huge challenge, fishing has been very good and will get even better as water temps cool. Actually, I love to fish the lake when it is low but I know it does create hardship on lots of land owners. Check out our SOUTH TOLEDO FISHING REPORT in another section of this month's LAKECASTER to get a few hints to what the fish are doing as they are adapting with low water levels.

FISHING INDUSTRY NEWS/STANLEY JIGS PURCHASES REACTION LURES: Before we get to Stanley's latest business expansion, I have a question. Why is it that fish seem to want 'most' the bait that you have the 'least'? Almost every angler will testify to that truth. Case in point......In mid-September, my clients and I were having success catching bass on deep points fishing a TX rigged Stanley Wedge Worm (6 inch redbug). I have thousands of plastic worms but knew my supply of that particular worm was low but had planned the next afternoon to run up to the plant at Stanley Jigs, Inc located in Huntington, TX and pick up a fresh supply. I called "The Man" Lonnie Stanley to make sure they had redbug Wedge Worms in stock. After a brief hello, Lonnie then shared about his recent purchase of ReAction Lures which had also been one of my sponsors. After talking shop for a few minutes, I told him about catching lots of good fish on his Wedge Worm and that I had run completely out of that worm.

Lonnie then said.....I have good news and bad news. The good news is that we have a good supply of the Wedge Worm but the bad news is that they are on an 18 wheeler headed to Toledo Town to be processed and it would be a week before they would be ready. After we finished our conversation, I hung up the phone and started a frantic search for the 'short supply' Wedge Worm. After a complete search of boat and lake house, I did find three...not three packs but '3' and planned to not use them the next day except as a last resort. On the lake the following day the bite got tough and we went almost an hour without a fish. I told my customer to swing his bait my way and I put one of the 3 worms on his worm hook. Within five minutes he set the hook on a bass soon followed by two more on the same bait. We did manage to catch 5-6 bass on the 'hard to come by' Wedges before we were again.....Wedge-less. Many of you have had similar experiences...they want what you don't have!

The Stanley-ReAction marriage will create a super product line under one umbrella combining top quality spinnerbaits/jigs/Wedge Worms with great plastic products such as Ribbit Frog, Gator Dog/Pups, Salty Dogs and U99s. If there is a nicer guy in fishing than Lonnie Stanley....I sure haven't met him yet. We wish Lonnie and his employees the best with this new venture. Save me some Wedge Worms!!

TACKLE THIEVES: Most anglers are an honest lot and we are prone to store our tackle so it's easy for us to use when we get ready to pursue our passion. However, some anglers have had their tackle stolen in recent months. The thieves seem to be well organized and do their home work before they hit an area. There have been several incidents on the south end of Toledo including both the TX and LA sides of the lake. A recent hit during Labor Day weekend cost anglers $10,000 worth of tackle. Some thieves on the TX side were caught a few months ago in the Indian Creek area. These crooks turned out to be juvenile but the incidents recently seem to be more advanced. Some of the heaviest hit have been the South Toledo Bend State Park area as well as the Toro Bay/Pirates Cove. Since the entrance at the State Park is gated and monitored, the crooks came in by water. Anglers are advised to secure tackle & keep eyes open to suspicious individuals.

AUTHOR INFO: Joe Joslin is a syndicated columnist, tournament angler and pro guide on Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn. His sponsors include Skeeter Boats/Yamaha Outboard Engines, Berkley, Abu Garcia, Fenwick, Jay's Carpet One, G. T. Industry, ReAction Lures,TTI & Stanley Jigs, Inc.Contact him at (337)463-3848/409-565-1288 or

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