Pre-spawn tactics continued

2010-08-07 00:00

THE Inanda BETT tournament was a test of patience. Right on cue, two days before the event, a cold snap swept through, disturbing the few early pre-spawners and shifting them off the banks and flats. This left nothing but lonely male bass around for the anglers to share.

Garth and I targeted all our pre-fishing areas with confidence, but came short at each stop — a common problem among the competitors. We eventually put five fish in the boat, all caught from different spots on different baits, reiterating the fact that there was no so­lid pattern to be found. This was obviously not good enough for a podium finish, leaving us with a moderate placing.

Lionel Crow and wife Cindy enjoyed their first BETT victory with a 7,1 kg limit. They caught the bulk of their fish off deep water points in the cleaner section of the dam.

Albert Falls has not been much easier of late unless you are Dave Thompson, who racked up a couple dozen solid fish on a recent trip, including a 2,7 kg fatty.

Other reports coming in have been rather depressing, with some anglers failing to boat a fish in a day. I am sure this will change in the near future as we approach the spawn — I hope. Goudetrouw Dam has star­ted producing some of the fish it has become famous for.

Dave Bure and sons ventured to the dam recently for their annual winter basscapade and caught some fish to remember, including a personal best of 3,4kg boated by Timothy. This venue will continue to produce good results in the weeks to come.

Continuing with my pre-spawn tactics from my last column, main lake fish often gravitate to the nearest main lake point to begin the spawning process, making their way to the secondary points and ultimately the flats in the bays.

A bay with some form of vertical structure is always a winner as this results in the fish only needing to make a vertical adjustment when needing to feed. This means less water for them to cover to achieve an optimum situation, whether it is a desired water temperature or as mentioned, intent to feed. Not all main lake points are created equal. Points that extend far into the lake will service more area, in turn attracting more fish.

Points with a main lake channel sweeping past are even more important as these channels are the highways bass will use to migrate into the spawning areas after stopping on the points to stage or feed.

Points with flats adjacent to them are also key points as some fish, if the desired factors are located, will spawn just off the main and secondary points.

So don’t ignore this either.

On these points and vertical structure, a suspending jerkbait is almost illegal. I rapidly fish a Spro McStick with long pauses parallel to the rock structures to appeal to schools of suspending fish waiting to make their move.

The Football Jig tactic, as mentioned, is a must, especially off the deeper edge of the primary points. Deep diving crankbaits, as you know, are great locator baits, so if you are prospecting new areas, the fastest way to study these areas is with a crankbait.

You will more than likely put some fish in the boat in the process.

So get out on the lake and catch some bass, and remember to release your catch alive to prolong the sustainability of our resource.

E-mail me at zorthewitt@hotmail.com.

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