April 2001

Fayette County Fishing Report

April 2001

  Well, by the time you read this most of the fish will have spawned and will be right back where they are right now in mid-February! Remember, the fish go onto the flats to spawn and then they must return. They use the same routes to leave the flats as they did to enter them. Take advantage of their predictability.

A few fish may still be moving in to spawn but the vast majority will be finished and HUNGRY! Fayette fish will feed in the post-spawn period and you will load the boat if you find them in the mood. Look on the secondary points and the sides of the three main lake points. I have been keying in on seven feet of water. I like to place my boat at that depth and cast two or three feet to either side, working parallel to the shoreline. I have caught fish in bare banks, banks with wood and isolated grass too. So it seems the key is the depth not the structure.

What am I throwing? Well, I may be a bit unorthodox, but I believe the fish on Fayette (and many other lakes) have seen it all and are looking for something new. I have had great success this year with a Bomber Flat-A in a bream color. You can control the depth of this bait far better than a lipless bait yet it has the same tight wobble. I am also throwing a red Rat-L-Trap in the same areas. While the Flat-A has produced more fish the trap has produced bigger ones. Another very effective bait for me so far this year has been Mann’s Baby-1 Minus in the Tennessee Shad color. We have caught fish to over 6 pounds on this bait in the early morning when the fish are shallow.

This time of year we all begin to think of topwater fish. Nothing sends the heart to pounding like a big bass crushing the dickens out of bait on the surface. A great new surface plug I have fallen in love with is the Bass Pro Shops Top Knocker. This bait has the loudest and biggest rattle chamber in the business. I first threw this bait in January when the wind was blowing about 25; and I threw it into the wind! It really chunks a long way! You can walk the dog with a Top Knocker but the “walk” is a good bit tighter than typical walking bait. You can also simply pull your rod directly downward and the bait will splash and dive before popping back up. The fish on Fayette have really responded to this bait. With a little chop on the water this cannot be beat.

Another bait I cannot fail to mention is the soft jerkbait. I prefer the Zoom Super Fluke in a Watermelon Red color. I use a BPS Johnny Morris Jerkbait rod and a Rick Clunn reel spooled with spiderwire. Why? I like to these baits in the junk and I tend to lose a few. Remember to tie a swivel and leader of fluorocarbon line of about 8 inches to this rig. It will prevent line twist and give it just a bit of weight to allow an easy cast and a good drop. I fish this rather quickly when looking for aggressive fish and once the sun is up, slow down and let the bait work.

Finally, the grass. Well, it is growing on Fayette. The question is, how long will the coots and carp leave it grow? Only time will tell. If you spend you day looking for it you will be rewarded with fish but the grass will be sparse and isolated. I like to throw the crankbaits mentioned above or a short leader, Carolina rigs with a Zoom baby brush hog, watermelon red.