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Making the most of pond fishing

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I fish a large pond/small lake, take your pick. It has a max depth of 12-15 feet. 3/4 of the pond is covered with lily pads or matted vegetation. The fish are still on a summer pattern. What is the best way to catch the bonus fish(2+ lb fish for this particular pond) while fishing from shore?

This pond does have big fish, although an average fish is around 12", but I haven't been able to break the 2.5 lb mark this summer. The fish haven't bit anything that isn't weightless. The main this I use is a weightless senko or fluke on the weed-edges. I've spent a few mornings and evenings throwing a frog and I've had one blow up. The fish are more likely to hit a worm or softplastic crawled on the top of mats than a topwater. I'm kind of limited on fishing other lures due to being limited to shore and tons of weeds. Any suggestions for catching the bigger bass at a place like this? 

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It is getting to the time of year when the big boys and girls start heading shallow too, which makes it easier for pond fishermen as long as you keep a bit of stealth in mind.  Throw a 1/4 ounce jig parallel to the bank and at the edges of all of the lily pads.  Jigs catch big fish. The light weight will help bump you up from weightless without going crazy. If you can, toss it onto the bank and drag it into the water.  I think you will be surprised at the hits you get.  Also, look for any vertical vegetation along the bank.  This always is a go to for me in ponds.  

I like to throw a 3/8 oz jig onto the big pads and then nudge it off into the openings. A bit risky from the bank, especially if you go deep into the pads, but you can't win if you don't play.  I just spent the afternoon doing exactly what I am suggesting in a very weedy lake. Pulled weeds off every cast and a decent size fish on a couple of them. 

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10 minutes ago, Onvacation said:

It is getting to the time of year when the big boys and girls start heading shallow too, which makes it easier for pond fishermen as long as you keep a bit of stealth in mind.  Throw a 1/4 ounce jig parallel to the bank and at the edges of all of the lily pads.  Jigs catch big fish. The light weight will help bump you up from weightless without going crazy. If you can, toss it onto the bank and drag it into the water.  I think you will be surprised at the hits you get.  Also, look for any vertical vegetation along the bank.  This always is a go to for me in ponds.  

I like to throw a 3/8 oz jig onto the big pads and then nudge it off into the openings. A bit risky from the bank, especially if you go deep into the pads, but you can't win if you don't play.  I just spent the afternoon doing exactly what I am suggesting in a very weedy lake. Pulled weeds off every cast and a decent size fish on a couple of them. 

The only 1/4 jigs I own are bitsy bugs. They don't have a stout hook. Would this suffice on a MF rod with 12lb flouro? 

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Check out Siebert Outdoors. They are a sponsor and Mike makes excellent jigs.  They have all the hook you need and can be customized.

 I seem to have the most overall success with black/blue. Today was my day to hone my jig skills and I caught four on black/blue. Two in clear water and two in stained water. I then went to a small pond and caught two more throwing the jig at the edges of the lily pads like I described above. I used a Jr. Paca craw as a trailer until it lost a pincer and I tossed on some other similar trailer.  I almost always use a black/dark blue trailer even when I am using more natural color jigs unless the water is really gin clear. Works for me but I am sure you will see different opinions on this.  

 I just purchase one of Sieberts Dredge jig packs. 1/4 oz, brush head, rattle band and rattles.  $17.60 for five jigs although you could bypass the rattles if you want to keep that quiet approach. There are tons of other options too but this is an easy way to make a jump into jigs. I store mine in a spinner bait box which works great although I now need more boxes.  Jigs get addictive because they catch fish.  As I lose jigs through attrition, they are replaced by Siebert jigs.  Can you tell I like them and their customer service? Lol. 

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8 minutes ago, Onvacation said:

Check out Siebert Outdoors. They are a sponsor and Mike makes excellent jigs.  They have all the hook you need and can be customized.

 I seem to have the most overall success with black/blue. Today was my day to hone my jig skills and I caught four on black/blue. Two in clear water and two in stained water. I then went to a small pond and caught two more throwing the jig at the edges of the lily pads like I described above. I used a Jr. Paca craw as a trailer until it lost a pincer and I tossed on some other similar trailer.  I almost always use a black/dark blue trailer even when I am using more natural color jigs unless the water is really gin clear. Works for me but I am sure you will see different opinions on this.  

 I just purchase one of Sieberts Dredge jig packs. 1/4 oz, brush head, rattle band and rattles.  $17.60 for five jigs although you could bypass the rattles if you want to keep that quiet approach. There are tons of other options too but this is an easy way to make a jump into jigs. I store mine in a spinner bait box which works great although I now need more boxes.  Jigs get addictive because they catch fish.  As I lose jigs through attrition, they are replaced by Siebert jigs.  Can you tell I like them and their customer service? Lol. 

I'll check them out. When I go to big fish lakes, I'll use the Picasso spider jigs in 3/8 or 1/2 oz. I've been mostly flipping them in lily pads on a larger lake that I fish and winching them out of heavy cover. For smallmouth I've been using the bitsy bugs. I've really upped my jig game this year, it's so much fun. I've always heard great things about siebert, I'll be sure to give them a try.

What is your 1/4 oz jig rod of choice? I have a MF LTB or a MHF at my disposal for this. 

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I use a MHF 7'3" most of the time for jigs from 1/4 to 3/4. I might be casting or pitching my jigs depending on my mood and position and this rod gives me a good overall platform. My reel is a 7.1:1. If I am in slop, the frog rod comes out and I've used it for jigs too.  Again, tons of opinions on this, but this setup works well for me.  

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Buzz bait. I've caught the biggest fish of the summer on them. It's worth a try IMO.

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Punch a trick worm with a 3/8-1/2oz weight if you have finicky fish in pads....

Trust me

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12 hours ago, Fun4Me said:

Buzz bait. I've caught the biggest fish of the summer on them. It's worth a try IMO.

Yeah I caught my pb on a buzzbait this summer. Its hard to explain, but there's only 1 spot I may be able to use a buzzbait from shore. 

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18 minutes ago, everythingthatswims said:

Punch a trick worm with a 3/8-1/2oz weight if you have finicky fish in pads....

Trust me

I tried a weightless trick worm, punching a 6.5" plasmatail and some beaver style baits. 

I'll try punching the trick worm, I may even try an exostickwhich I really want to catch a fish on. 

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Try a Johnson silver weedless spoon. 

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On 9/18/2016 at 9:59 AM, Dwight Hottle said:

Try a Johnson silver weedless spoon. 

This! ^^^^

  When I was relegated to shore fishing,. This was my most productive and favorite lure to use . I added a 3 or 4 inch white grub on for a trailer.

  Just fish it just like a frog on top of the weeds, and constant retrieve while under the waters surface, you wont be disappointed.

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If you want to catch bigger fish, use bigger baits. Use big 10" worms and 8" lizards both weightless on top and with weight on bottom. 7 inch senkos dead sticked in any holes. Big spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, chatterbaits, and jigs. I prefer at least 3/8 and usually 1/2 oz. If it's shallow with cover use a larger trailer like a beaver or creature bait on the jigs. My favorite big fish jigs are the "mop" type jigs with living rubber that flare out with a smaller beaver or sweet beaver trailer. Gives a large profile but has a slow fall and easy to swim through weeds or drop in holes and the skirt flares out and presents a big meal. I also like using mag super flukes, and 5-7 inch paddletail swim baits weightless on top and rigged on a big owner beast hook with the spring keeper. Any open lanes or water try a big wake bait like an ms slammer, or weedless or top hook swimbaits. My favorites are hudd 68's and mattlures gills. Basically I just up size everything and focus on heavy cover, any transition areas or irregularities in the weed lines, or anywhere the weeds are present on any kind of ditch, drop off, or deeper water

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On 9/22/2016 at 11:20 PM, timsford said:

If you want to catch bigger fish, use bigger baits. Use big 10" worms and 8" lizards both weightless on top and with weight on bottom. 7 inch senkos dead sticked in any holes. Big spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, chatterbaits, and jigs. I prefer at least 3/8 and usually 1/2 oz. If it's shallow with cover use a larger trailer like a beaver or creature bait on the jigs. My favorite big fish jigs are the "mop" type jigs with living rubber that flare out with a smaller beaver or sweet beaver trailer. Gives a large profile but has a slow fall and easy to swim through weeds or drop in holes and the skirt flares out and presents a big meal. I also like using mag super flukes, and 5-7 inch paddletail swim baits weightless on top and rigged on a big owner beast hook with the spring keeper. Any open lanes or water try a big wake bait like an ms slammer, or weedless or top hook swimbaits. My favorites are hudd 68's and mattlures gills. Basically I just up size everything and focus on heavy cover, any transition areas or irregularities in the weed lines, or anywhere the weeds are present on any kind of ditch, drop off, or deeper water

So now that the lake has cooled (66-67 degree surface temp) the bass are getting more active. I went out for 2 hours on saturday afternoon. I caught a nice 3-3.5 lb LM + a few dinks on a lipless crank with a loud rattle.

I was anticipating great action the next day. I fished from sun up til about 2pm, and only hooked into one really nice fish, but it grabbed my soft bodied lipless crank right as I was reeling in and I tried to flip him before he was played out....I was sick to my stomach. It's amazing how quickly things can change on a small lake/pond. 

They didn't want anything that rattled, and I tried a jig and a t-rig, but I don't have tons of confidence pitching 25-30 ft from shore. I'm definitely hitting the holes between the pads/mattes where I need to be, but I'm not confident that pitching that distance and at that angle is going to be the right presentation to be effective. What do you think?

 

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I've caught bass pitching mats floating out in the middle of the lake. Stick with it and you will figure them out. 

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I went out yesterday for a few hours. I tried 3/8 oz jigs, 1/2oz jigs, I tried each in black and blue and GP and switched between chunk trailers and ones with a slight bit more action like a beaver style.

I even tried 6-8 inch worms. Still no luck. Could it be possible that this is just not a good lake at this particular time of the year for this type of presentation?

I go to a large lake most weekends and fish from my kayak, and have no problems catching fish on a jig n pig, t-rig, worm etc. but for some reason, I just can't seem to get bit on a slower moving bait ( with the exception of a weightless stickbait.) Either way I will keep at it, I just don't get why I not getting bit, I know it's not my presentation.

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Quite a bit of it has. As I said before, they treated the lake with some sort of herbicide to treat the lily pads so the trout fishermen don't whine.

There are still some green weeds that I've been casting too as well. 

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More lure options now!!! Id be itching to throw a crank if I could get away with it. 

So the trout fishermen don't whine lol. 

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I went out on Saturday, and caught a nice LMB on a 1/2 oz lipless crank with rattles. The next two outings ( Sunday & Yesterday) I couldn't buy a bite on a lipless or a spinnerbait ( although I did miss a nice one as stated in my above post.)

Yesterday, I forgot they stocked the lake with trout several hours prior, so my spot, my back up spot, and my back up-backup spot were occupied by bobbers and people on their cellphones in lounge chairs... I didn't have many lanes opened for fishing cranks or spinnerbaits so I stuck with the jigs and worms. 

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