I fished with Jonathan O. of Coppperas Cove this morning. We caught a total of 19 white bass and 1 largemouth bass by jigging slab spoons vertically in 27-31 feet of water.
Jonathan caught on very quickly to the vertical jigging technique that puts a majority of the fish in the boat from mid-December through mid-March. This one went 13.75 inches.
We had a forecast for an overnight low of 39 degrees and 15 mph SW winds at sunrise. What we got was an overnight low of 31 degrees and a 5-7 mph WNW breeze — that makes a big difference to fish!! Accordingly we did not boat a single fish until around 9:45a when the winds had shifted SW and the wind speed increased to ~12 mph.
At that time, we found some suspended gamefish amidst a concentration of suspended gar between Areas 1163 and 373. We hung around long enough to boat 1 largemouth and 1 white bass.
Around 10:15 we moved to Area 1164 and graphed white bass holding very tightly to bottom in 27-31 feet of water. Using TNT180 slabs (white, 3/4oz.) we boated 18 fish here steadily over the next 1 3/4 hours. We would hover over an area, begin jigging, catch 2-3 fish only to have the fish lose interest, so, we made short “hops” of just a few yards each time to get our baits in front of “fresh” fish, and this paid off well for the duration of the trip.
As a side note, bird life was plentiful today. We spotted ringbill gulls, terns, loons, white pelicans, coots, blue herons, cormorants, and even one osprey. The cormorants seemed to be driving the train and everything else that ate fish was eating the fish those cormorants were stirring up.
Despite the trip getting off to a slow start, Jonathan said repeatedly that we had truly landed more fish in this one trip than in all his past trips combined. He noted how we were quite intentional in our approach. No tossing out the line and then sipping coffee waiting and hoping for some thing to happen. We actively pursued fish from the time we got on the water until we found them and then enjoyed catching those we’d worked hard to find.
TALLY = 20 Fish
Start Time: 7:30a
End Time: 12:00 noon
Air Temp: 32F at trip’s start.
Water Surface Temp: 56.6F
Wind: Changing steadily from NNW to SW over the course of the trip.
Skies: Clear skies transitioned to fair over the course of the trip.