Time for new fishing method?

February 1, 2014

We all get fixated on our standard patterns to catch fish using our proven methods. Sometimes even those proven methods don’t work all the time.

It might be time to consider fishing for a different species, or it may be a good time to try a new method/lure.

I get fixated on using my baits that I have confidence in as I know they will catch fish. Most of us operate that way.

If the fish I am looking for is not biting I seem to stay focused on that species as I know they will turn on sometime. I could expand my horizon and go fish for crappie – or how about those big blue catfish (but I usually don’t)?

Coming off the lake about two weeks back, I saw these anglers showing off some huge blue catfish caught on chicken gizzards. The two biggest they had were over 20 pounds each.

That would be fun having those huge catfish tugging on the end of your line.

There are a lot of folks who love to chase catfish – and catfish are good on the dinner table as well.

Winter fishing for stripers usually means that “dead sticking” is the pattern of choice for me, yet those fellows fishing near points were tossing jigs with curly tails, catching fish as well in relatively shallow water (on Texoma). It would be good to try a different pattern/lure presentation and gain confidence in that pattern.

You have to devote some time in learning new techniques, and I know most of us don’t have the time but it is a good idea.

Maybe a New Year’s resolution is in order to expand your horizon. I haven’t been crappie fishing in ages, and I am going to have to find some time to do just that. Lake Benbrook has some great crappie to catch and is only about 30 minutes from Granbury (and it currently has water).

The black bass on Squaw Creek are in good shape, and they are a good choice right now. Tilapia is another choice on Squaw Creek that many are fishing for.

The best way I can think of to allow me to chase another species or to try a new technique is to make sure I am ready to do just that.

What I am trying to say is that I should have some other fishing outfits ready for that species before heading out.

Have a couple of poles rigged for crappie or some outfits rigged for bottom fish bait for catfish or whatever. It just depends how much time you have on the water and what species is prevalent on that body of water.

Another option is to hire a guide who can impart their knowledge your way.

Yet another option that many use to learn is to join a fishing club and fish some local tournaments. Fishing tournaments will teach you new techniques and methods for catching fish. This can be a lot of fun as well.

Magazines, fishing shows and the internet can help you before your head out. The Texas Fishing Forum is place where anglers compare notes and methods and help each other out.

Many people live on the forum, which is good. However, don’t forget that good ol’ practice on the water will make a difference.

Whatever you decide to do, whether you fish for your favorite species or others, the best advice is to spend time on the water when you can. Getting in the outdoors helps to reduce stress for me hopefully it can do the same for you.


Winter is not ending and this latest cold snap is keeping folks off the water. The past weekend, the weather was nice and many anglers were out on the water.

Granbury is over 9 feet low and access is extremely limited. However, Rough Creek park is open and there were many boats on Granbury.

Best reports were sand bass and black bass. Water temperatures have fallen in the lower 40s.

Squaw Creek black bass to 5 pounds are good on soft plastics. Tilapia on Squaw Creek continue to be good on worms. You need to call in advance to get on this power plant lake as they are only open Friday through Sunday for boaters.

Best striper action continues to be on Texoma. It is a little drive, but worth it. Lake Lewisville sand bass and hybrids are good on slabs and jigs. Big blue cats are good on Lewisville, lake Worth and Benbrook on cut shad and chicken gizzards.

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