Now’s a good time for sand bass locally

May 11, 2013

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As we all know, white bass, or what we call sand bass, typically spawn in the backs of major creeks or up in the river that feeds the reservoir.

It is also known that some of the fish may spawn on wind-blown banks and points. Locating these fish after the spawn when they make their trek back to the main lake may have you burning some fuel.

Right now you can catch white bass on most every part of Lake Granbury. These fish on Granbury have moved some, but they could not make the long trip upstream this year due to low water. These locations where the fish are holding can hold fish year-around.

You can be sure, though, that the majority of the migration will continue to lower parts of the lake the deeper we get into the summer. Lake Granbury is more like a river than a lake as it stretches for many miles. However, similarities exist for most major bodies of water.

As most anglers know, there are specific locations that are more prone to hold fish. Look for major points and creeks when predators can corral bait fish. Looking upstream is not an option right now as the lake is over 6 feet low. Those deeper creeks and shallow areas that still have water are probably good choices.

These returning sand bass, or those sand bass that never left due to the low water, will move some. On Granbury, the fish do hold at Hunter Park, then near town, then Indian Harbor, then deCordova and the dam area. Similarly, these same areas are visited in the opposite order before the spawn.

Smaller reservoirs like Benbrook and Proctor can be easier to locate fish as you have less water to search. However, finding active fish on some days will be difficult no matter what body of water you are on.

Again, look for points, flats and humps and you will most likely find fish. When the south wind blows for several days, work those wind blown points.

Lake Bridgeport is an example of an essentially open round lake. The Trinity River feeds Lake Bridgeport and the spawning sand bass make the trek up this river and then return to the main lake near islands, humps, spillways and feeding flats.

Bridgeport, which is not as nutrient-rich as other reservoirs, cannot support huge populations of bait fish. Therefore, locating large populations of bait fish on your graph will most likely lead you to the predators.

Fish at this time of the year will push bait to the surface. Surface schooling is common. The sand bass also feed heavily post spawn in open water chasing schools of bait. Many days the birds will still point you to active fish. If the birds are not working, it is time to go check out those humps, points and feeding flats.

If the fish are not in the feeding mode, more than likely those fish are staged in deeper water adjacent to those humps, points and flats. You may need to go deeper until you locate fish and then put your presentation on their nose.

Look to see at what depth the majority of bait fish are holding. This is where I would start. Sooner or later the fish will start to feed and begin pushing the bait fish up.

When you locate fish or structure where you have some success, save that location on your GPS if you have one or use some identifier on the bank to help you find that location again. The fish will use these locations over and over again. Some days they will move so be prepared to work several locations.

Water temperatures are currently in the upper 60s. Based on my experience, this is prime time for slabbing.

When you locate schools of bait fish on or near the bottom, the slab or spoon is extremely effective in catching these fish. Many folks will use a heavier slab and a small crappie jig tied 12 to 18 inches above the slab. You can double up with this outfit. Bouncing the slab off the bottom is deadly.

HOOD COUNTY FISHING REPORT

Water temperatures are on the rise and the lake continues to fall. More obstructions are showing their face, and the Brazos River Authority are marking hazards.

The good news is that the fishing is good to excellent. Black bass to 7 pounds are being caught on soft plastics. A recent tournament this past weekend took 22 pounds to win.

Crappie anglers from Indian Harbor to deCordova are boasting of catches and I have been twice out for sand bass and limits are easy on slabs. Stripers continue to be real slow, but everything else is biting.

Squaw Creek black bass numbers are good but the bigger fish have been hiding some. Tilapias are being netted at Squaw Creek. These are invasive species and it is against the law to return them to the water. They are great eating, so you probably want to keep them.

On other reservoirs, Lake Benbrook, Bridgeport and Proctor are boasting of good catches of sand bass and hybrids on slabs and live shad. Benbrook crappie are reported as good to excellent with numerous 2-pound fish being caught.

Bridgeport access is limited to lowering water levels. Benbrook levels continue to rise due to them filling it from Richland Chambers. All ramps are open at Benbrook.

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Category: Sports Archived