I‘m a liberal leaning outdoorsman attempting to open the minds of right wingers to the idea that libs fish too. Anglers come from all walks of life, left, right, and center. Not everyone who fishes for bass is a redneck fond of Nascar, country music, and religiosity. Expect posts about largemouth bass fishing, techniques, reviews of lures and other products, but not any condemnable conservative rants. I hope to inspire the online angler community to dial down rhetoric which will do more harm than good to our sport.

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Thursday, July 1, 2010

• Off the Pier 6-30-2010

Fished off the pier one more time to see if bass were lurking under the duckweed after all this rain. See, Tropical Storm Alex is pushing a lot of moisture up our way and over the course of a couple of days, we've seen occasional downpours. It's been my experience that the fishing improves, especially when skies remain overcast following any rainfall. To my dismay, the water levels have stayed fairly steady. Cross is the city reservoir, after all.

The bass were not as eager as I had hoped, but a few decided to bite. A few gar took an interest as well. Ended up hooking into three, but only landed two of them. Something about how I'm bringing them along the pier dislodges the hook. Guess I'll have to stop doing that and get better at handling the net on my own in a pinch.

Anyway, started out throwing something different, a black Spro Bronzeye Frog. Several fellow anglers online have been talking frogs lately and although the Scumfrog has been proving successful for me, the Spro frog I bought a while back has been gathering dust. I had one fish blow up right next to the pier as I lifted the frog out of the water. Never got it to hit a second time.

Switched to the white Trophy Series Scumfrog and worked it behind some trees. The pattern today was slow repetition with accuracy. They wouldn't bite on the first pass, but by bringing it right over the top of them and stopping, I could draw one out. First fish went 2lbs 13oz.

Second fish was the one that came off, but I found it underneath some heavy weeds growing shallow. Again, I had to convince it to bite. Felt significantly lighter than the first, but looked like a 2lb fish. Had some crisper color to it too, almost as if it had just arrived from deeper water. Most bass that come in under the duckweed and hydrilla get an off-yellow hue to them.

Spent far too much time casting without any bites, but finally had a hit just as the mosquitoes started getting on my nerves. This one was a little guy, but it hammered the frog. Forgot to weigh it. Could have been the same fish that I missed with the Spro, but the next cast after that, I had another similar blowup that missed. Happens a lot off of that side of the pier for some reason. Maybe this fall, I can work on a brush pile or something and put it out in the middle of that to give them something more prominent to relate to.

Sorry for posting late. Like I said in a recent comment, I fish when my schedule allows. Finding the time to post afterwards varies. From now until September, I'm on the hunt for good topwater fish, even if it interferes with the rest of my life. Last year gave me a 6lber doing this kind of approach. I really want to give the frog a try on Caddo soon.

If you're bored, and I mean bored, I uploaded a new YouTube video showing off some of the fish lurking under the pier. The catfish are back, but the bluegill are too. Saw a couple of nice ones. Also found a small bass cruising underneath. Got footage of it. I have seen three small carp swimming around, but they were camera shy that day.


Anonymous said...

what pier are you fishing from?

BassFishingDem said...

Private pier on the lake.

Anonymous said...

i was just wondering i just started fishing cross last year and dont know it very well

BassFishingDem said...

Even people who have fished this lake for years haven't got it figured out. Spend your time in the trees and fishing docks. Don't worry too much about deeper water yet. Check my hot spots map in Google Maps via the link in my Cross Lake Map post. Should be useful if you're just learning the lake.

I'm replicating a pattern I established last year. Find some shallow slop in the shade and fish it with a frog. Duckweed is my thing, but I'm sure you could find them under pads and hyacinths just the same.

fishing said...

You seem to be the best bass fisherman in the area :) great work

BassFishingDem said...


Now that's certainly a stretch and an honor I'd like to hold, but the anglers I've seen fish the Red River and Caddo Lake can put me to shame in a heartbeat. I still have a lot to learn about bass fishing. I'm only taking advantage of a well established pattern. The only surprising thing worth mentioning about all of this is how small of an area I'm fishing. For having limited options, I sure do catch a lot of quality fish this way.

Anonymous said...

Hello bassfishingdem I don't know if you know this but october 28 and 29 the junior bass fishing world championship will be held at cross lake. I qualifed to fish it and I was wondering if you could suggest to me any specific lures\spots to use at this lake because I have no idea and you see to have a lot of knowledge about cross.

BassFishingDem said...

I heard something about the tourney from a family member. To be honest, there is no rhyme or reason to Cross Lake. It's a tough fishery. Once you think you know what's going on, the pattern will change, if there is even a pattern at all. Congrats on qualifying, but I don't think you all know what you're in for. I have no idea why they picked Cross Lake.

Most generally say fish the west end, but I haven't had much luck over there lately. Lots of gar too, but that should change by late October. I like 40-8, duck blinds, and the three islands on the west end. You might stick to fishing the east end and north banks, hitting every dock you can. Not much on the main lake to fish. It's a barren bowl out there. I really wish I could put more people on specific spots, myself included. I don't know how many boats will be in your tourney, but I suspect the twin bridges will be a crowded area.

If I had to pick one bait that works no matter what, it'd be a stickbait. Doesn't matter if it's a Senko, Tiki Stick, Trick Stick, or whatever else is on the market. Last November, I stuck a nice 5lb fish on a bubble gum Tiki Stick. Had to fish it slow, though.

In terms of other lures, pick your confident shallow running crankbait and have that ready. Lots of anglers throw spinnerbaits all day long regardless of conditions. White and chartreuse would be a safe bet. The other great option will be your crawfish imitators. I like the Big Bite Baits and Lake Fork craws, but beaver baits, Chigger craws, and anything like that would work just the same. Jigs might be a good idea too, but in my experience, finesse jigs and shaky heads might be more productive than heavier options. As you can see in this particular post, topwater lures were working well. In October, I might not be throwing a frog, but I might consider a buzzbait.

Not sure what kind of weather late October will bring. As you can see from my latest post, the lake is on the low side. If we get plenty of rain between now and the tournament, go shallow. Plenty of cypress trees to hit, so be methodical, meticulous, and patient, yet persistent. If it stays low, I have no idea what I'd do. I might find whatever green hydrilla there is left, likely along the long banks between the twin bridges.

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much but I have a few more questions do you use braid here? Will there be alot of duckweed still around in october? and what is the water clarity? There will not be many boats in this tournament because it only juniors so the bridges would be a good spot?

BassFishingDem said...

The lake is usually not very clear, but depending on the weather, it can range from a medium stain to a very muddy chocolate milk color. Again, it all depends on the weather. The duckweed is long gone. Only a little bit remains, but since the water has dropped, all that is going to die off soon enough.

Line choice is a matter of preference. I am sure quite a few locals use braid, especially with the hydrilla and lily pads out there, but by the end of October, you'll probably be looking at lots of dead and dying vegetation. If you need braid for sensitivity and low stretch, then by all means, use it. I'm a fluorocarbon and copolymer person. Never used braid for anything at all.

I'm not saying the bridges will be a good spot. Don't think in terms of spots. It'll sink you on this lake. Patterns make the angler. Listen to the professionals talk about that subject. A spot is worthless if the time of year and weather pattern is not right. I just know the twin bridges are heavily fished no matter what. Lots of people leave this lake empty handed, including those who fish the twin bridges.

There is no magic bullet on this lake. The sooner you beat that into your head, the better.

Think more about baitfish and craw imitation, shallow water tactics, and pitching to cypress trees. Outside of that, you're flying blind, as do most of us down here when it comes to Cross Lake.

Anonymous said...

Hey if you happen to go fishing at cross within the next week I would be very happy if you could tell me how things whent. The Junior World Championship is only a week away and I need all the help I can get.

Anonymous said...

Its ok if you don't fish cross but I would greatly appreciate if you could tell me the water clarity and temperature. Im leaving ri wednesday morning

BassFishingDem said...

I don't have immediate access to open water right now, so I can't give you either with any level of certainty. On top of that, we had rain Saturday into Sunday, so any runoff will change conditions over the next day or two.

I don't plan on fishing any time soon. Lots of other things going on.

Anonymous said...

I would like to thank you bass dem because you have helped me and my fishing partner from connecticut become the Bass fishing junior world champs. I caught to fish over 17 wieghing in at 5 pounds 12 ounces. I needed every ounce I could get because I won by 1 ounce. In practice I only caught 1 short 11 3/4 but at end of the day we found shad everywhere in johnsons arm and that is where we started the in the tournament. As you must know a major coldfront rolled through thursday and friday. So when we hit 65 in the brand new skeeter yamaha combo I was stuck in the middle without a console to hide behind. We got to the spot and I was throwing my rebel pop-r but I was so cold that I got a massive backlash on my first cast of the day. To make it worse my parter alex caught a slot fish on his first cast. So I finally get my reel working and start working the pop-r throw it near some pads and I get my first hit and it looked like a smaller fish but I still set the hook, nothing. I start working it extremely slow for about 30 seconds and then I assume the bass is gone so I start to reel the lure in as fast as I can and bammmm. Big fish hits it and I land the fish. Pop-r falls out of its mouth once he is in the net I measure him at about 18 and a half. Good start. I end up developing a pattern near the pads and get another small hit so I set and I got him. I land him and to my surprise he is just over 17. Great 2nd keeper. I keep fishing and get a fish that is in the slot 14 and a half but this fish smashed the pop-r. Wierd. So we make a run to the twin bridges and nothing. Go back to johnsons arm and right away in the shade near some pads. BAM. Another good fish get it to the boat and its 16 and 3/4 painful to let it go. My partner ends up catchings some fish on a senko and I can't even get hit on a senko. We both were working it the same but he had a red hook and that was triggering the fish but that we didnt find out until we were at the weigh in. Here is a link to the bassmaster story http://sports.espn.go.com/outdoors/bassmaster/federation/news/story?page=b_tourn_federation_2010_jwc

BassFishingDem said...

Congrats guys. Glad I could help, although it sounds like the choice to throw a Pop-r was all you.