Fayette County Fishing Report

May/June/July 2002


            Greetings all! This report should find the fish settling down and transitioning into their summer pattern during May. What about June and July? They are hot and the fishing is summer style. The fishing has changed on Fayette over the past few years, as we all know. However; just recently Ronnie Ramirez, another Bass Pro Shops fisherman boated a 10 pounder and saw two fish bigger! There have also been stories of a fish pushing 12 pounds! These kinds of fish have been few and far between in recent years. Want to catch one of these beauties during early summer? Throw out your old ways of thinking and change you style of fishing, the good old days are gone.

            May should be a topwater paradise. I have had great success with a Bass Pro Shops, Avoidance bait called the Verifier. It looks like a big lipless bait but it is actually a jerkbait. You can chunk it a mile in the wind, lower your rod tip, twitch it and hold on! The fish I have been catching on it inhale the bait completely. They donít mess around. It has an extremely erratic look on the retrieve. Look for the fish off the sides of the main lake points early in the morning. There will be some grass but looking for distinct grass lines may be tough. Between the coots and the carp, the grass hardly has time to grow. The LCRA has taken to lowering the water level a couple of feet in the winter these past few years. This also has effected the grass. I have also been throwing a Top Knocker when the wind is low. It works like a Spook but is shorter and has a super loud rattle chamber.

Once the sun is up, it is time to look to your plastics. I throw a Zoom Fluke in the same areas that I worked with my topwater baits then move to the end of the points with a Carolina rig. A watermelon/red baby Brush Hog is still my hands down favorite on Fayette. But recently the new CrŤme Devilís Tongue has done real well. Just ask Ronnie!

            As the fish start into their summer pattern here is where, I believe, the changes start. To catch fish through the summer you must do one of two things. First, hit the main lake humps that run along the buoy line. Use your electronics and a good map to find them. Look for the side that has a good drop and throw your Carolina rig. Remember to use fluorocarbon leaders on Fayette. The water is good and green and I think it gives you an edge by making your line virtually invisible. It does not absorb water as monofilament so you will eliminate the bane of Carolina rig fishing: breaking off at the knot. The fish will be somewhere on the humps or on the side. Remember, when you mark forage fish at a certain depth you want to use that information and fish the humps at that depth. Fishing above that will prove just about useless.

            The other technique is one that most fishermen are loath to use: fishing deep trees. Theyíre a numerous stands of deep tress on Fayette. There are some good trees on the intake side of the baffle dike. There are more at the mouth of the three main coves. Conventional wisdom holds that fishing a spoon around the tress is an effective way to catch these fish. I prefer to throw a grub or worm down the trunk and work it out through the limbs. Use as light a weight as possible yet still be able to feel the bait as it works its way around the branches. I especially like to throw a skirted, double tail grub in these situations. There are many other techniques you can try around these trees. Donít be afraid to experiment a bit. The big bass are in the trees. The days of matted grass are gone and donít look like they will be coming back. The better fish are staying deep most of the year. We are all going to need to hone our deep-water fishing skills in order to be successful.

Donít forget a few things while fishing this time of year. WEAR SUNSCREEN! An SPF of 30 in an alcohol gel is the best way to go. Be sure to wash the scent off your hands after you apply it. Wear a hat to keep the sun off your face and good quality sunglasses. Remember, there is reflective light coming off the water and a hat will not completely protect you. Drink plenty of water and remember, alcohol has no more place on a boat than it does in an automobile. Wear light, loose fitting clothing. As June turns to July very few people fish Fayette from dawn until dusk. The heat can really get to you. Be familiar with the symptoms of heat stroke and take precautions against getting dehydrated. Finally, EVERYONE on your boat should wear a life jacket no matter how hot it gets. There are no excuses worth a life. Be safe out there and be courteous.

Well, that is about it for now. It was nice to see so many of you during the BPS Spring Fishing Classic at the Katy store and at the Holderís Show. Donít forget, I also teach bass classes at the store on alternate Sunday mornings. If you are interested in attending, call the store to get a schedule (281) 644-2200. The classes range from Basic Bass fishing and Advanced Bassiní to Summer Bass.

If you would like to book a trip to Fayette give me a call (281) 499-3799, email (FishingCoach@compassnet.com) and check out my website: www.compassnet.com/fishcoach.