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Hez

Johns Lake in Central Florida

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Hey guys and gals!

I was looking for an up-to-date fishing report on John's Lake in central Florida.  Has anyone fished it lately and care to offer up any info or tips?  

I plan on targeting this lake for a little while, been fishing Lake Harris lately, but think I am ready to change it up.  

Any info would be greatly appreciated.  

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Update after 2 days of fishing John's Lake:

If I had to summarize my 2 days in 1 word it would be CHALLENGING.

Water Clarity - 4-5 ft

Water Temp: 86° - 89°

Vegetation: Reeds, kissimmee grass, a lot of thick thick milfoil (challenge in itself)

Started at about 6:00 AM fishing the south end of the lake from where you launch .  Started with a frog, and worked it around for about an hour - till after the sun came up - nothing, not even 1 blow up.  We trolled around the eastern edge up towards the mouth of the canal, where we saw bass chasing bait fish on the top of the water like crazy.  Caught one 1 lber on a 6" culprit fat max ribbon tail, and then had 1 blow up on a top water popper.

Still in search mode, trying to figure out a pattern - we moved east through the canal to fish the larger part of the lake.  Started on the west shore of Turkey island - working the edge with a the worm.  After no success with that, decided to try a white spinnerbait and then the silver lipless crank again - to no avail.  

At about this time it was near 11:00 AM - and we decided to scout the lake a little bit and call it a day, planning to head back sunday morning. 

Sunday morning - 6:00 AM, we decided to try our luck on the east part of the lake.  Started fishing the Whopper Plopper 130 on points, around docks and in the shallows - nothing, not even 1 blow up.  After about 2 hours on this part of the lake - throwing frogs, worms, plopper; we decided to hit the main lake again where the bass were chasing the bait fish at the mouth of the canal.  By this time, water temp was 87° and we felt the top water bite was off - mainly due to the lack of activity in the water - so we were throwing worms exclusively.  

After trolling through the canal - working both sides, without a bite - we went back to the east lake to try around Turkey Island again.  We worked the edge on the west side of turkey island and off in that cove, thinking there would be fish there.  No luck there.  

We finally decide to call it a day - skunked - no fish in the boat..water temp about 89°, outside temp of 95°...it's almost miserable at this point.  

The clearer water was intimidating to me - the Harris Chain lakes that I am accustomed to has a darker stain, and less visibility (about 2') - and most of my tackle works great there - but I was not confident in my color selection in this clearer water.  

Another factor that was intimidating to me was the thick thick milfoil.  It was so thick at times that the trolling motor wouldn't navigate it.  That's too thick - but I know there has to be fish under there...I might rig up a punching rig for next weekend.  

Again, it was a tough outing -  the bite was off - or I couldn't figure them out - either way...I'll be back next weekend to try again.  

 

johns-lake.jpg

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Your first day at Johns Lake sounds like my first day there. I was fishing way too shallow near the visible weed lines. I think they are more likely to be in submerged weedlines in 5+ feet of water. I also hear that the far southwest part of the lake is good, but I have yet to make it that far in my kayak. Good luck and let us know how it goes

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1 minute ago, bostonsox2904 said:

Your first day at Johns Lake sounds like my first day there. I was fishing way too shallow near the visible weed lines. I think they are more likely to be in submerged weedlines in 5+ feet of water. I also hear that the far southwest part of the lake is good, but I have yet to make it that far in my kayak. Good luck and let us know how it goes

Yeah...was a tough outing for sure.  Going to head back out there this weekend... try some different techniques...some different spots.  I also heard that the Southwest part of the lake is good too - actually saw a youtuber do a kayak fishing video out there - gonna be giving it another go.  

I think my biggest mistake is trying to fish it like I have been fishing Lake Harris.  

 

Thanks for the encouragement, and will keep updating. 

 

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Fished John's Lake again this weekend - specifically Friday evening and Sunday morning.  

Friday evening was tough, weather wise.  13-15 MPH wind from the ENE - I tucked away in the first little cove by the boat ramp, and fished the edges of both small bodies of water until dark.  I threw a silver rattle trap, whopper plopper, and T-rigged pumpkin seed culprit worm.  I got a bite on the worm, but it only had the worm in it's mouth when I set the hook - so no good there.

Sunday was a little bit better.  Started off in the main lake at the edge of the canal, working the flats trying to find a topwater bite.  Fish were actively chasing baitfish on top of the water, but I couldn't coax them into eating the plopper.  Moved around to the northwest area of the lake and caught 1 2lber on a swimbait at about 9:30 - 3 hrs into the trip.  After fishing that area we headed down to the southwest corner to try to fish that area, but by now the winds had picked up to 10-15 MPH, which made it tough being down there...and that coupled with the heat - we called it a day. 

I talked with a homeowner on one of the canals.  He stated that the fishing had been super tough there for him as well.  I personally think there are a few factors that might have to do with this.  

1. The water level seems high on this lake.  There are numerous boat docks around the lake completely submerged.  I also noticed that the topo maps are about 2 feet off in places according to my depth finder.  I wonder if this makes if for a harder fishery.

2.  Something else the homeowner spoke about was the amount of hydrilla and milfoil in the lake right now.  That was one of my complaints - not that it's bad for the fish - just tough to figure out...and find the fish.  

image.png

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I know summer in general is a tough time to be fishing, but it makes me wonder whats going on under the surface in that lake. They may be even deeper than we'd expect due to the clarity of the lake. Still nice to hear that even the homeowner was having a bit of a tough time. Come spring, I can only imagine how great the fishing will be. That clear water will make for some good sight fishing. 

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1 hour ago, bostonsox2904 said:

I know summer in general is a tough time to be fishing, but it makes me wonder whats going on under the surface in that lake. They may be even deeper than we'd expect due to the clarity of the lake. Still nice to hear that even the homeowner was having a bit of a tough time. Come spring, I can only imagine how great the fishing will be. That clear water will make for some good sight fishing. 

Agreed - summer bite is tough...but I too think there may be something else going on.  I have tried to do more research on the current water quality for Johns Lake, but haven't found much.  

I do realize that what I was referring to as thick milfoil - is actually hydrilla...very similar, but I learned this week how to tell them apart.  

That location of that lake being on the Orange/Lake county lines probably results in neglect from county officials of each respective county.  I did read where Lake county used to have responsibility over the maintenance of the lake, but that there was controversy because Orange county residents seemingly used it far more than Lake Co. residents.  Now supposedly they share the responsibility - but who knows... 

I told my son we will head back over there this fall, that things should be better then.  

Edited by hezeez@gmail.com

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