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BigOnFishin

Bank Fishing

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Is there any advice you guys have for bank fishing in the early spring into the post-spawn? I fish a cove on the northern side of Smith Mountain Lake and I usually don't have much luck while it's cold. So what lures/line would you suggest? The cove is roughly 12 feet deep with a decent spawning flat further up the cove. I do know that it is better to fish a steep drop off at the mouth of a cove that leads to spawning grounds for pre-spawn, but there really isn't access to a spot like that here. Feel free to share personal preferences. Thanks guys!        

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First, welcome to the forums!

 

I'd throw soft plastics the whole time, among occasional shallow cranks and jigs. That's me.

 

Wacky rigged stick baits, finesse worms, even lizards have produced during spawn/post-spawn for me big-time.

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i believe the issue here may be location and bait presentation .. since your on the shore your choices of areas to fish are much more confined .. i agree with Darren small baits mainly plastics .. i love fishing a senko when on shore they just plain catch fish .. good luck , fish slow if its cold ..

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If you haven't read RW's excellent "Guaranteed to Catch Fish" article on here, you should.

 

FWIW, I think that slow fishing (almost dead-sticking) soft plastics is just a consistent producer.  The discipline developed there (patience) is helpful to all kinds of fishing and, I think, helps you to think through what's happening.  You learn more, and fishing slow entices the bite.

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Welcome aboard! I'm assuming the area you are able to fish from shore is rather limited(?). Hopefully, it's a place where you have access to a point, or other type of bottom structure, that leads to deep water. Under cold water conditions (ice out to pre-spawn), I've had a great deal of success fishing limited access structures using two presentations.

 

First is a 4" wacky rigged Senko on 6# test Fireline with a 3' - 4' leader of fluorocarbon going to the hook. Second would be a finesse type Carolina-type rig. A 1/8 or 1/4 oz. bullet sinker on the main line, a quality crane type swivel next, followed by a short 1' - 2' fluorocarbon leader. Texas rig a 5" Roboworm on a 2/0 worm hook and you're in business. Slowly drag it back to you and watch your line. When it moves or twitches, set the hook and hang on!  :)

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What part of Smith Mtn Lake are you on, as in are you on one of the river arms(which) or near the state park or what? I fish from shore there often when my aunt and uncle invite me down and were not on the boat. In the spring the water is going to be cooler still, i have luck with baby bass kinami flash and pearl/white super flukes. i fish in the Craddock Creek area btw. i also throw small lipless cranks and jerkbaits/xraps. lizards and creature baits should also work well. and when all else fails, live nightcrawlers...

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Im mainly near the hardy road area, so wayyy up on the north side. Also, for wacky rigging sinkos, color choices for now would be white, blue/black, bubblegum, green pumpkin? Light test florocarbon for wacky and for the carolina rig?

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Im mainly near the hardy road area, so wayyy up on the north side. Also, for wacky rigging sinkos, color choices for now would be white, blue/black, bubblegum, green pumpkin? Light test florocarbon for wacky and for the carolina rig?

Good color choices for wacky rigged Senkos would be the green pumpkin and watermelon types. They blend in well with their surroundings. The fish sees the movement, but cannot precisely identify it as fake. Which is why it is so effective.

 

As far as pound test fluoro goes, I favor the 6# or 8# test leader. Reason is not for the pound test. Rather for the extra abrasion resistance the fluorocarbon offers when bottom dragging.

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pre spawn cold water a rooster tail works good for me

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As Teddy Roosevelt said, "walk softly and carry a big stickbait."

 

I happen to know he preferred wacky unweighted and dropshot green or half-green/half-white colored lures. Sometimes a roboworm or floating 3" minnow could also be found on the end of his 6 lb test flouro or mono line. He was known to say a dark colored jacket and hat never hurts as well.

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Im mainly near the hardy road area, so wayyy up on the north side. Also, for wacky rigging sinkos, color choices for now would be white, blue/black, bubblegum, green pumpkin? Light test florocarbon for wacky and for the carolina rig?

 

yeah youre way up there on the lake, ive never fished up that far. you ever fish for the flathead cats up that way? but back to the point. try learning everything about the water that is available to you like i have about the cove i fish from shore at SML. it has helped a lot. learning the grass beds and tree stumps and large rocks and such.

 

i dont know if fluorocarbon makes a difference there, i only have 1 rod with FC and i see fish coming up and biting just the line up in the water column lol havent seen that with mono though

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I've been bank fishing all winter and soft plastics and lipless cranks have worked for me.

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First it's not luck that catches fish it's the skill in choosing the correct lure for the time of the season were fishing in.

Prespawn

The bass just come out of the mud beds from there winter nap. For me it's slow moving plastics like crawfish, jigs, slow rolled spinnerbaits and lizzards etc. Any thing that looks like an easy meal.

During the spawn its plastic lizzards. Lizzards eat the eggs so bass hate them.

Post spawn these big gals are off the beds and hungry. I like crankbaits during this time. But cranking crawfish cranks works too. I bounce the deeper running one's in ten feet of water off the bottom. Any crank that has a craw pattern seems to work.

A slow moving rapala, spinner bait, inline spinner, spin fly, all seem to work as the sun comes up. It's topwater in the first light.

It's skill when to use what under different lighting conditions too. Choose the sides and colors wisely.

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