Friday, April 13, 2012

Lake Anna Fishing - Back To Normal?

Lake Anna Bass Fishing April
Lake Anna Bass Fishing April
This year has been unusual to say the least.  A very mild winter resulted in relatively warm lake water, no significant shad kill, and the stripers staying up in the rivers with huge bait plugs all winter and into the spring.  Then it gets super warm, super early, and a tremendous number of Rosie O'donnell bass come up shallow in MARCH and spawn (this was amazing, I can't remember seeing this many Largemouth over 6 pounds in Lake Anna / very encouraging).  The five fish Lake Anna tournament record was shattered March 23 during the Fishers of Men tournament by a sack weighing in at almost 28 pounds.  This is a tremendous accomplishment and goes to show that this lake is healthy and so is its population of lunker bass.

For the past three and half weeks we have had a million fronts push through, 7 day stretches of sustained wind over 15 mph, and falling water temps.  Now the barometer and the thermometer seem to have stabilized and my notes on Lake Anna are beginning to resemble years past.  Water temperatures are rising again and bass are plentiful on secondary points /

near the spawning pockets just begging to eat a carolina rig.  Good numbers of crappie are being caught in key grass beds and shallow brush on soft plastics and minnows.  The big schools of stripers are still in the rivers  following large schools of bait.  Live bait is the way to go for now but the trolling bite shouldn't be too far away.  As water temps continue to climb next month, watch for the stripers to start spilling into mid-lake hot spots.  In my opinion if you want to catch stripers tomorrow, early is the way to go.  Late afternoon seems to be the ticket for bass and crappie right now.  Waves of spawning largemouth will continue to show up (I don't think it will be as gratuitous as we saw in March).  Look for a dynamite topwater bite early in the morning over the coming weeks.  It is still fishing and what worked today might not tomorrow, especially during this time of year when the fish are known to be in motion constantly.  Nothing trumps time on the water so dust off that tackle box and let's get to it!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Wind Blown Potomac

Potomac River - Pre Spawn / Spawn Conditions
The wind was really cranking by this afternoon and it became a challenge to not only find decent water but stay in one place using the trolling motor.  During the last part of the tide some cloud cover moved in and the bite improved.  Water temperature has dropped a little in the past week but the fish haven't gone far / just pulled out a little.  This 6 pound 3 oz pig looked like she was ready to pop any second (note tail / gut).  With cooler temperatures in the forecast this week you will need to slow down your presentation throughout the day and take full advantage during periods of feeding activity.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Moving On Up - Bass Getting Shallow in Prep For Spawn

Lake Anna Pre-Spawn / Spawn Conditions
These fish can't wait to get it on.  Find the clean, protected spawning pockets and burn up that trolling motor.  Cold fronts will slow fish down tremendously and either bury them in cover or pull them back.  To catch bass during the spawn does not require site fishing.  Crankbaits, swim baits, shakey heads, and flukes will catch these fish.  Stay keyed in on heavy concentrations of baitfish.  The bass will have to feed heavily in preparation for the spawn and during recovery.  Top water baits early in the morning and late in the evening are never a bad call this time of year.  Remember that all fish don't spawn at the same time.  If something stops working for you, go back and check it in a week or two.