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Fishing on Toledo Bend Lake

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 joejoslinoutdoors@yahoo.com

Toledo Bend Reservoir Fishing Report
May 23, 2015


Last weekend Toledo's Cypress Bend Resort hosted the single largest tournament of the year, the McDonald's Big Bass Splash. The tournament started Friday morning May 15 and concluded Sunday afternoon May 17. The tournament had a guaranteed payout of $500,000. Anglers can fish together in the same boat but it is an individual tournament. The format allow for lots of opportunities to win cash with 15 places paid per hour. Numerous Lake Area anglers got in on the hourly cash awards but a very lucky and excited Lake Charles angler, Gil Leger, won it all with a huge 11.48 pound largemouth. First place winnings included a 2015 20 ft. TRX bass boat that came loaded with multiple electronic units, 36 volt trolling motor, power pole and numerous other accessories. To tow the new rig included a loaded-up 2015 extended cab pickup truck plus $7,000 cash for a total value of near $100,000. Congratulations to fellow angler Leger on his amazing catch. To catch an eleven (plus) pound bass anytime is a rare feat but to catch it in tournament conditions is a pretty neat deal. We will run Leger's photo next week.

LAKE CONDITIONS: Today the lake is back to 173 which is a foot over full pool. Both generators were running 24/7, at the spillway(flood gates) 6 gates are open 4 feet and 3 gates are open 3 feet so a huge amount of water is being released. Water temps are running from 74 to 78 degrees. North Toledo is stained/muddy, mid lake is stained and south Toledo is clear on the main lake with stained in the main creeks.

FISHING REPORTS/BASS: There were high numbers of anglers on the lake last weekend, to say the least in preparation for the McDonalds so this week it was good to have a much less boat traffic. Numerous patterns and are being used as well as various depths. A large number of excellent bass were caught during the Big Splash and I think more than normal for mid-May. Part of the deal is that Toledo is simply loaded with big bass. Wahoo!!!!!! It is unreal! The fact that it was cloudy/rainy/windy a lot of the time during the event didn't hurt either as it helped to keep bass shallow and active. I had clients pretty much everyday last week up until the tournament started and the cloudy/rainy conditions made for excellent fishing as we caught a lots of good fish. I shut it down for the weekend and let the tournament anglers have it.

We caught bass last week on basically the same things we have been throwing for 2-3 weeks since the rainy season started. Its hard to beat Toledo when it is cloudy/light rain. We are working primary and secondary points with top water, crankbaits, wacky worms, Texas rigs and drop shot. We do fish these differently depending on what time of day it is as well as the amount of light penetration and whether or not there is a ripple on the surface or not. I have a tendency to fish these more shallow early/late or if cloud cover is present.

We caught bass this past week from 4 to 30 feet with a lot of bass on drop in 25 ft using a Bottom Hopper Jr (Berkley Havoc) in watermelon when it is bright/sunny and shady watermelon candy when it is cloudy. I'm using 8 lb test Berkley 100% Fluorocarbon and a Revo spinning reel. We also caught a lot of fish on the old standard.....Texas rig....with a Bottom Hopper (6.25 inches) and a Trick Worm. Our Texas rigged bass came from 14 to 20 feet working it very slowly.

We caught some bass also on points and ridges in Six Mile/Housen Bay area. I look for areas where the hydrilla is scattered and not thick. We are catching 2-3 X as many out of scattered grass than when the grass is thick. I like a depth of about 15 to 20 feet with grass growing off the bottom about 1-2 feet.

CRAPPIE/BREAM The crappie are being caught under bridges at night and over man made brush piles and the numbers as well as quality have been good. Live shiners and jigs are the baits of choice. Bream are bedding all over the lake and are just in time to take the kids fishing as school is out for the summer.

Guide Joe Joslin

Joe Joslin Outdoors Fishing Guide Service
Visit Joe's Website at JoeJoslinOutdoors.com