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Just now, everythingthatswims said:

That's because they wait for winter to go hang at those discharges :D

For sure the truth in those power plant lakes. I think the real feeding binge just doesn't happen when we feel like it should. I usually do better in late October through most of November when water temps range from the high 50s to the mid 40's. All through the 60 degree water temps it's usually pretty tough though. 

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I'm in northern IL (Fox Chain). I'm heading out this afternoon. I've been getting them in shallow areas, very shallow (2-3ft) that have secluded thick clumps of weeds. Drag it through  and when it breaks free. Boom! (Ned Rig) Also a frog on the edges of floating duck weed. Going to try drop shot by some off shore white bass schools I found. Hoping the bigguns are hanging nearby them.

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The calendar says fall, but the conditions are mostly still in a late summer pattern.  It was almost 80 degrees here today in central Minnesota.  The lakes used to turn over around here in late September/early October and it hasn't even happened here yet.  We didn't even have a frost here until mid November last year.  Thankfully this fall hasn't been super warm and we've had some frost already but I'm afraid that these warmer conditions in the fall aren't going away because our climate is warming up.

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10 hours ago, Bluebasser86 said:

For sure the truth in those power plant lakes. I think the real feeding binge just doesn't happen when we feel like it should. I usually do better in late October through most of November when water temps range from the high 50s to the mid 40's. All through the 60 degree water temps it's usually pretty tough though. 

I agree.

fishing has been tough for me lately. Luckily have not been skunked yet, but numbers and size have been low for a month.

the lakes I have fished the last couple weeks are around 65 degrees. needs to drop another 5-10 degrees.

with the current forecast, that may not happen for awhile.

 

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59 degree water temp in southeast NY today on a shallow weedy 100 acre pond. Tough fishing. Been tough last few weeks. I've never experienced a "fall feed bag" probably because all my lakes are shallow and weedy with no shad. Primary forage is bluegill and perch

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IMHO, the two worst times of the year to fish are extended unseasonable cold snaps in the spring, and extended warm spells in the fall. Both of which we have had plenty of this year. Lots of guys can catch them when dealt those cards............I can't.

 

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On 10/18/2017 at 6:49 AM, BigAngus752 said:

I also live in Illinois (central).  The calendar says fall, the morning air says fall, but it is NOT fall for fish yet.  All the water temps around here are still way too high (like 75 degrees last time I was out).  Night time air temps are getting to the 40's sometimes now.  Just wait a couple/few weeks and the water temps will get down where the fish like it and it will be on like Donkey Kong.  Find an overcast afternoon first week or two of November, throw some topwaters and spinners.  You should make a comeback.  

 

Exact same thing with "pre-spawn/spawn". ?

 

Quit watching calendars, moon charts, temperature gauges, & get Outdoors!

 

Fall & spring "feeding frenzy* can be earlier or later each year, let nature tell y'all what's going on.

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Try mid to deep divers they will be feeding hard for winter soon...I notice the wacky and plastic bite slows this time of year usually...tight lines to ya!

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Maaan. A big, fat skunk today. Not even a bite. I tried a Texas rigged Senko (didn't have my Wacky stuff on hand), some spinnerbaits (even got desperate and tried inline spinners and beetle spins), several lipless crankbaits, top waters, and swimbaits. Just...nothing. Tomorrow I'm going back to what worked in the dead of summer: Wacky rigged Senkos in the weedlines and pockets and big worms hopped on the bottom. We'll see what happens. These ladies and gentlemen are not chasing at the moment. It's odd, though, because for a couple of weeks there when the weather did cool off and before the water had a chance to cool of itself, lipless crankbaits and spinnerbaits were being crushed.

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I think the weather has the bass screwed up around here.  They don't know what season it is.  One day it's in the 80's, and the next day the high is in the 60's. Then the temps are back into the 80's again.

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16 hours ago, Sword of the Lord said:

Maaan. A big, fat skunk today. Not even a bite. I tried a Texas rigged Senko (didn't have my Wacky stuff on hand), some spinnerbaits (even got desperate and tried inline spinners and beetle spins), several lipless crankbaits, top waters, and swimbaits. Just...nothing. Tomorrow I'm going back to what worked in the dead of summer: Wacky rigged Senkos in the weedlines and pockets and big worms hopped on the bottom. We'll see what happens. These ladies and gentlemen are not chasing at the moment. It's odd, though, because for a couple of weeks there when the weather did cool off and before the water had a chance to cool of itself, lipless crankbaits and spinnerbaits were being crushed.

Sword, where are you?

Ah... I see, Illinois, and ~60s water temps when you started this thread.

 

I have often done well with speed when water temps are in the upper 50s into the 60s. It seems the fish are in some kind of... funk. They are slow to respond, or don't respond as well, to standard "feeding" type presentations. I've done well though by burning a lipless, bulging a tandem SB, or grinding a buzzbait. Interesting bc, this has often been the case on water I've just plied with slower presentations. I switch to speed and BANG! Sometimes its been BANG!, BANG!, BANG!, BANG!. Enough that it's pretty apparent its real.

 

It could be something to do with dropping light levels, low water, and dying veges.... maybe. I really dunno. They remind me of "stale" steelhead, that come into the river on early runs, all full of spit and vinegar, then water levels drop and they get into a funk -what we called "stale". Whatever, bass do seem to get into a funk; Interesting that Bluebasser has noticed the same thing.

 

My advice, for myself that time of year. 1). Try SPEED. 2). Try a different water layer -bottom, rather than asking them to come up. Then... 3). try a new water body.

 

BTW, I just put out a video on fall fishing that briefly mentions the need for speed.

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I hated fall fishing until I learned how to understand it better.  I hired guide in the fall named Dale Stroschein, and he taught me how to find them.  They HAVE to feed in fall. I was beyond frustrated, until he help me boat 5 pounders in Sturgeon Bay October 19 last year. I searched for them locally in 48 degree water running moving baits tight to bottom and landed gorgeous Smallmouth last November. I hear ya. Its very frustrating.  Don't give up, fall is very tough. Keep moving around trying deep, shallow, mid depths,  fast and slow. Hopefully a few bites will give you a hint. If not KEEP moving. You might not be near fish. If you are on them, keep changing baits,  go ultra finesse if needed. 

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Went out today and caught my best smallie of year. Took a little time to find the fish. Water temp at 59. I was throwing a perch colored RatlTrap and just about the time I was starting to doubt my lure selection I landed the hawg. I actually had a different fish cough up a small perch. After that I never changed lures.

 

Don't give up man. They are out there. The water is still pretty dang warm for this time of year.

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1 hour ago, BuzzHudson19c said:

Went out today and caught my best smallie of year. Took a little time to find the fish. Water temp at 59. I was throwing a perch colored RatlTrap and just about the time I was starting to doubt my lure selection I landed the hawg. I actually had a different fish cough up a small perch. After that I never changed lures.

 

Don't give up man. They are out there. The water is still pretty dang warm for this time of year.

That's funny dude. I finally got a couple of dinks on the same lure a little bit ago. The first is pictured.

 

Also, I hooked into my PB on this lure today as well. Only right at the shore when I was going to grab her, she shook off. She was barely hooked. Tried to be as calm as possible but the odds were slim. I d**n near cried.

 

2EKZsH.jpg

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On ‎10‎/‎17‎/‎2017 at 9:12 PM, Sword of the Lord said:

As I've said before (and since I don't know who does and doesn't know) this is my first year back to bass fishing in 3-4 years since I got sick. Healthy now and back at it.

 

The fall I remember and the fall being talked about, is not the fall I'm experiencing. I was catching tons of bass in the heat of the summer when it should have been harder. Theoretical better fall conditions have been miserable! I'm catching bass, but only about a third of what I was catching, with some big fat 0 days, which I didn't really experience at all in the summer. The Senko bite, both Texas and Wacky, is completely dead, as are worms. The Ned and weightless trick worms are dead. I get the occasional top water hit only on a Whopper Plopper, and a few fish on lipless cranks and spinnerbaits. Mostly it's just tough and miserable. I have no explanations. Do you all? I live in Illinois. We've mostly had 60-75 degree highs for a few weeks and 45-55 degree lows. I usually fish ponds, 2 small lakes, and a river. It's the same everywhere. I'm well aware that this happens sometimes. You just have rough days. But this is happening at the exact opposite time it theoretically should, and the supposed tough conditions were what was phenomenal for me. 

Dink, it could be as simple as your line.

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19 minutes ago, Ben Miller said:

Dink, it could be as simple as your line.

How so? I always run thin fluoro with finesse and I use lighter mono than most, and never use braid. 

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Well guys I am here in Texas and even though I have caught a few fish, it has been tough. I fish from the bank and I was doing better at Lake Fork than even boaters were. There was no particular pattern to it, and it has been like that the last two lakes I have fished. I first went to Lake Tawakoni and then Lake Fork, and the result has been the same. It was like catching ONE fish for each lure I changed to. So Different lure, Different presentation, Different colors. Only think I saw that was close to being constant was a small crappie jig with a white twin tail trailer, and that was the only thing that caught me two bass on the same lure. And I haven't tried a NED rig, but my next fishing trip I am going to super slow down. I will agree on one thing I have read here and this from experience. low 50s to high 40s is a good time to fish.   I have caught Bass at 40 degrees and 11 mph winds in upper Wyoming so lets see. It should get better when it gets colder.. right now the waters have been high 74 - 81.. 

 

JQ.

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Goose Creek Res - water temp 69.8 - 72.0:  Yesterday started off pretty good with a 4.5 pounder in a clump of pads on a Z3 trick worm followed up by a 2 pounder a couple casts later.  Same cove, after seeing some short-lived top water feeding I located some shad hanging out so I slowly circled them.   The bass came back up about 20 ft from my boat and I was able to get a couple 2.5s.  The schooling action is starting but not lasting long and I haven't seen it anywhere else on the lake yet.

 

Overnight temps are supposed to be dipping into the high 40s this week so I'll be on the lookout for even more action.

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The cold fronts every week or 2 We have been experiencing (St. Louis) has been brutal. The fish are very sporadic as well so if u fish from shore (myself). It's a challenge but I enjoy it.  The temps at night are going to 30s this week and the cold rains we have had made it so tough. I got 0 bites in 12 hours yesterday, still had some fun but it was long. 

 

Anyone else been successful around STL?  

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Got out on one of my local grass (heavy hydrilla) reservoirs this weekend. The good news is that they were pounding the jigs (the bad news is that they were all this size).

 

 

lm102217.jpg

 

The big females must be on some other structural element. The grass is breaking up and making some impressive mats but so far I am not finding bigger fish by punching that grass.

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I posted a picture of my biggest smallmouth so far this fall on a lake in the Kawartha Lakes chain in Ontario, Canada.  The details on its surroundings are as follows; the water temp was 61F at a depth of 9ft. I caught 6 fish in total that were on a rock flat with a sand transition to deeper water and a weed edge on both sides. I’ve been catching more and bigger smallmouth after sunset; I really don’t have an explanation for this, as everything that I’ve read tells me that smallmouth become way more active in sunny weather, perhaps with a bit of a breeze present.  The areas that I fish are very rocky and I believe that they hold onto the suns heat better than sandy bottoms which results in more fish activity when compared to either weeds or sand flats.

 

Over the last few outings I've noticed that the fish are really holding close to structure. The larger fish I caught last week were right on the drop off of a saddle; the fish that I caught last night all hit in an area that had a small hump which went from 9ft up to 7ft and then back down to 9ft about 30' away from the pier I was fishing on. I figured out its location while throwing a deep diving jerkbait earlier in the evening.

 

It's amazing to see just how much of a difference a couple of feet in depth make to the fish. I don't know if there are weeds present but I'm certain there are different sizes of rock, ranging from large to small pebble sized rock which could also hold crayfish for them to feed on.

 

I have stuck primarily with one jerkbait this year, the Rapala Shadow Rap in yellow perch. I swapped out the trebles and put a dressed treble on the back, and it resulted in one of my biggest smallmouth of the year.  I’ve spent the better part of the year learning and refining my jerkbait techniques and find that it’s paid big dividends in helping me catch more and bigger bass than any other pattern I’ve used all year.

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Fall this year has been good to me as compared to last which was horrible. I switched to swimbaits and spinners that mimic shad.  Also baby bass colored spinners are magic right now!  Lost my PB three weeks ago due to a poorly tied FG knot but I was inches within getting her on the bank.  Bought  a net that I thought would be great for a bank beater such as myself to remedy that.  This past Friday I hooked a beast with a head like a meatball on my ultralight setup.  It wouldn’t fit in the net!  

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On ‎10‎/‎17‎/‎2017 at 10:05 PM, BuzzHudson19c said:

Dusk and dawn may be great in the summer and dead times in the fall.

Dawn is dead time indeed for me. I could get shot by the duck hunters around here!

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Summer has been pretty bunk for me, I went almost 3 weeks without catching a fish.

 

We had flooded waters this year and the weather went from winter to summer way to fast, it sucked.

Now that fall is here is been a little better so far.....but it has been one of the slowest summers ever

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