Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

August 2, 2013

GONE FISHING WITH JERRY MILLER

Summer Rains Turn On The Fish

JERRY MILLER
Jacksonville Daily Progress

JACKSONVILLE —

            One of my best summer fishing tips is this:  If possible, go fishing a day or two just after a big rain.  A hard rain will replenish the oxygen level in shallow water causing the bass to get very active.  Try areas where a creek enters the lake.  After a hard rain there will be a run off and current.  Bass congregate in eddies just out from the creek current.

            My wife Betty and I fished Tosh Lake in Rusk and targeted a big weed patch in the mouth of a creek.  Betty landed 12 bass on a Nichols’ blue back Pop-U-Lure in less than 30 minutes.  She was using a Revo bait casting reel and a Falcon 6-1/2 foot medium action rod loaded with 15 pound Mono.  This is the perfect set up for top water fishing.

            One small area near a creek held a lot of bass.  Under normal conditions this shallow water area would almost be devoid of bass, but the heavy rains and current positioned the bass on the back side of a reed patch.  This is the perfect location to ambush bait fish after a hard summer rain.  Betty caught 10 of these bass in 10 casts. 

            Every time I picked up my rod to cast she would set the hook on another bass.  I finally gave up casting so I could take her fish off of the hook.  It’s been about two years since she has been fishing, and I was curious to see how many bass she could catch out of that one area. 

            After that first 30 minutes of continuous action we began fishing around the lake and caught more bass, but they were scattered. 

            I’ve also experienced bass turning on in the hot summer just before a big rain storm hit.  Several years ago on Toledo Bend a good friend of mine, Tommy McDaniel, and I were fishing a “worm hole” on this huge lake.  Bass fishing was slow, but when the weather began to change, the fish turned on.

            Suddenly it became overcast and the wind picked up.  At the same time the bass began hitting our worms and crank baits.  In a very short while we both boated a limit of bass.  After about 30 minutes we had to get off of the lake because of high wind. 

            The conditions that occur during summer rain storms are similar to cold fronts pushing through in the spring.  This sudden change in the weather always triggers the bass into feeding. 

            If you can find a lake that has some current in it during the summer you will experience much better bass fishing than lakes without current.  The larger lakes like Toledo Bend and Rayburn harbor a river system that that often carries a current.  Finding eddies just out of the current is the key.  Bass often position themselves on the back side of main lake points.  It’s the perfect ambush point for bait fish.  This is the type of area that concentrates the bait fish and the bass, making this a premium fishing spot.

            We don’t receive many big three to four inch rains in the summer, but when we do you can experience some of the best fishing of the year!

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            On Lake Jacksonville I’ve seen several fishermen during the week chasing schooling bass.  Most of the activity has occurred from the mouth of Cat Creek up to the dam.  Most of the schools can be seen mid-lake.  Recently the best time to go was from approximately 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.  On one heavy overcast day just before the wind shifted to the north, I caught schooling bass from 8:00 to 11:00 a.m.

            My best lure – or should I say lures – was an Alabama-type rig with five 4-inch white swim baits.  The rig I used was called a Yum Yumbrella Flash Mob™ Junior.  I caught half of my bass fishing this rig just under the surface and the other half letting it sink to about 15 feet.  The main benefit from fishing this rig was that all the bass caught averaged two pounds each.  My largest was three pounds.  Smaller bass seem to ignore this rig.

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Jerry Miller can be contacted at: gonefishing2@suddenlink.net