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joef16fxr

Getting Frustrated!!

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I am pretty new to Bass fishing (about 2 mo's kayak, 2 mos bank and now two mos boat, a Crestliner VT 18 Pro).  I have caught a few big ones (a 6# and a 4 1/2#), but never have consistently caught fish.  Finally, this Sunday I was blanked again and became very frustrated.  I feel like I am trying everything and I cannot catch them.  To put it in perspective, I bought my boat two months ago and have caught 5 total fish from it.  I have used spinnerbaits, squarebills, soft plastics, jigs, Carolina rigs, texas rigs, drop shots, etc.  I have a Lowrance Hook 5 fishfinder and have tried to cruise around to find them, but I really don't know what I am looking for.  The water temp here in North LA is around 85 degrees and the water visibility is about a foot and a half.  I have fished shallow, deep, docks, and I am losing my mind!  The lake I fish at it's deepest is around 30 ft.  I have tried to learn from various videos and just seems like I am doing something wrong.  Any advice would be appreciated.   

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Don't get too frustrated. Keep at it. The water being 85* is half the problem. Fish just don't bite well whenever it's that warm. Soon the water will be dropping to 70* and below and the fishing will get better. 

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Google fishing reports for the lake.It will help you know how and increase your confidence in fishing there.Id fish under docks on bright days for starters.

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I'm guessing that a 'new' bass fisherman with a six pounder in the memory livewell isn't going to get a lot of sympathy here....:) just kidding...sorry....we've all had dry spells and challenging weeks...or months...read and study...and get time on the water....not trying to be flip or make it sound easy...it isn't....but there isn't anybody on here who hasn't had bad weeks

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Remember you are not doing this for a living. This is suppose to be relaxing. Even if you aren't catching anything try to learn from it. On days like you are describing (hot water) I try to do things I've never tried before. Deep dragging a jig, finding new targets like deep stumps and rocks, and slow rolling a spinner bait. If you ain't catching bass on the typical technique, try the non-typical. Worst that could happen is you don't catch anything which is what you are doing anyway.

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Hi Joe,

If you fish this lake a lot and it has a reputation for Bass, then I would hire a guide.  A guide is the quickest way to learn what you are doing.  

The weather/temperature and time of the year has a lot to do with it.  You say you are new to Bass fishing.  How did you catch your other fish?  If you caught fish on a worm/plastic was the fish hooked deep or on the lip?  There is a good chance that you are getting bites and not feeling the take.   You need to pick the baits that are catching fish at this time of the year and not fish everything in your tackle box.  Is there a local tackle shop you can go to?  Local tackle shops can be a great source of information if you become a customer.  Not a Big Box store but a local neighborhood shop.   

Frank

 

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I am fishing a small Bayou here in LA.  I caught my two big fish, one on a spinnerbait and one on a football jig by a dock.  You may be right, I might not be feeling the bites, but I don't think there are any guides for my lake.  There is a small gas station/bait shop by the lake so I'll stop in there and ask.  Thanks for the advice!  She swallowed the jig, got the spinnerbait right in the top of the mouth!

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I'm not saying this is you but it certainly was me . When I got my first bass boat with a Humminbird Flasher , I did not know how to fish points and did not know much about the thermocline .I did a lot of fishing the mouths of coves , thinking that I was point fishing . After a season of trial and error , I figured out the best points extended far out into the lake . After that fishing became a lot easier . My advice is to spend a lot of time using that graph and invest in some marker buoys , if you havent already . If you see something interesting toss a buoy and fish it . Keep repeating and and you will eventually start getting fish . There are some days where I  spend half the day just watchig the depth finder .

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With a look down sonar unit the area you get returns from is no more than 1/3rd the water depth you are traveling over. It sounds like your lake is shallow and you spend most of your time targeting shallow water areas. Let's say 20' is deep water for you, (it is for most bass anglers) that's less than the width of your boat regarding sonar returns, you must drive directly over any fish or target to see it. If you fish in 9' of water, the sonar return is about the size of a hula hoop or 3'!

During the hot summer water tends to layer and form a thermocline, usually about 10' down in 20' depth of water to the bottom, you need to know where that is and not fish any deeper until the water cools down into the mid 70's.

Slow down and put away most of your tackle. Get out your jig and worm rods and use those along with a spinnerbait or Chatterbait. Keep it simple and enjoy your time on the water P.

Use your sonar to locate baitfish and any quick depth changes, underwater rocks, bushes, stream beds, stumps etc and fish those areas along with your visual targets and fish at night.

Tom

 

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marker buoys give you a bearing when your fishing away from the bank. this way you can have a target or reference point when there is nothing else to line up with.

184208_ts.jpg

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7 minutes ago, joef16fxr said:

Can someone explain buoy markers? No idea what that is/does.

 

4 minutes ago, riverbasser said:

marker buoys give you a bearing when your fishing away from the bank. this way you can have a target or reference point when there is nothing else to line up with.

184208_ts.jpg

I think they are essential pieces of equipment and use them regularly . Even in small   lakes fishing from a rental jon boat  , i pack a couple .

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Bouy markers are bouy's that you toss out into the water, they have a weight and string attaching the weight to the bouy. once the weight touches the bottom the bouy will float on the surface showing you exactly where that drop, stump, rockpile, etc.  you are "marking" is

 you can get them at bass pro shops cabelas etc. usually brightly colored yellow or orange. You can probably google fishing bouy markers, and get a look at some.

As for being frustrated?,, its easy to do when beginning bass fishing. without a good understanding of the world you have entered,  that world can seem cruel, even mean,. But you are in the right place to fix that. Glenn has put up a ton of videos on this site, anything you want, or need to learn is here. you can use the search engine, or go to the tackle forum and read any of the threads that will most likely have a video link.

welcome to the best bass site I know of, and good luck. 

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1 hour ago, joef16fxr said:

Can someone explain buoy markers? No idea what that is/does.

Are you asking about Lowrance sonar buoy markers? If yes place your question in the Electronics forum.

Tom

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3 hours ago, Keith "Hamma" Hatch said:

Bouy markers are bouy's that you toss out into the water, they have a weight and string attaching the weight to the bouy. once the weight touches the bottom the bouy will float on the surface showing you exactly where that drop, stump, rockpile, etc.  you are "marking" is

 you can get them at bass pro shops cabelas etc. usually brightly colored yellow or orange. You can probably google fishing bouy markers, and get a look at some.

 

As Keith says, Marker buoys will give you an easy way to pinpoint a desired target and, once you find what you are looking for, frees you up from having to constantly watch the sonar/gps screen and trying to adjust the boat accordingly.  Doing the latter is a LOT harder than it might seem.

Note, depending upon the current and/or wind speed and the distance the weight must travel before it hits bottom, you may need to toss the buoy a little upstream or upwind to compensate.  Otherwise, the buoy will have drifted off target.

Oh, and don't forget to pick it/them up when you are done.  It's easy to forget to do this-especially if YOU have drifted some distance away.

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One way to quickly learn from your days on the water is to keep a fishing trip journal.  After a while it gives you a picture of what is going on with you and places your fishing. Let's you go back and see what worked or didn't under different conditions and situations.  Better than from memory.

 

Wayne

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I am also newer to the world of bass fishing. But I've learned a ton in the past 2 summers by watching a crapload of internet videos. Also been reading some great books & have learned alot. They are listed below. I HIGHLY recommend the In Fisherman series. Books #2 & 3 are loaded with tons of info. Book #1 isn't necc but not bad either. 

Don't let anyone tell you that you can't learn from reading & watching videos, but through experience. If you are not doing the proper techniques, using the right lures in the right areas/times, etc, you will lever know right from wrong.

Learning how to feel the bite is one area you must learn from experience & is a huge key. But make sure you have a nice rod with great sensitivity. That helps a ton! 

Cadence is another key. Mix it up. Don't keep throwing a lure in the same spot & retrieving it at the same speed or same cadence. If it didn't work the first cast, don't think that a fish is suddenly going to want it the 2nd time. 

Confidence is another thing. If you're not having luck there, hit up some farm ponds, get some numbers, then head back there with more confidence. I still have days where I go home with no catches, but I also try learn from them. 

And last, I highly recc you grab a book or 2 from Amazon. (about $10-14 w/ shipping)

In-Fisherman Critical Concepts series.

Book #3 Presentations is by far the best, followed by #2 Bass Location

In Presentations, you will learn how to properly use about 20 different baits/lures. I learned so much from every page that it was unreal. A couple of my friends loved it too. I've never seen a book nearly as good as it is.

Another great find below. Short book but loaded with facts on putting numbers in your boat. 

High Percentage Fishing: A Statistical Approach To Improving Catch Rates

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On ‎9‎/‎26‎/‎2016 at 1:23 PM, joef16fxr said:

I am fishing a small Bayou here in LA.  I caught my two big fish, one on a spinnerbait and one on a football jig by a dock.  You may be right, I might not be feeling the bites, but I don't think there are any guides for my lake.  There is a small gas station/bait shop by the lake so I'll stop in there and ask.  Thanks for the advice!  She swallowed the jig, got the spinnerbait right in the top of the mouth!

That small bait shop by the lake may be very useful.  Make it a habit to buy something every time you visit.  Doesn't have to be much but it will increase the chances of getting good information. 

If your fish are all caught with a jig or worm deep in the throat it may indicate you are not feeling the pickup.  In my opinion it takes more skill to fish a jig than a worm.  You might want to fish some with a Texas rigged worm.  A Zoom Trick Worm is a good worm to start with if you have a lot of cover on the bottom.  A Trick Worm comes through grass better than a worm with a ribbon tail.  Black, Black/Blue, Junebug or Green Pumpkin are good colors.

Frank    

 

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