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TLBassin

Adapting to New Water!

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Everone has a certain thing that they look for when they fish on new water.  What are some things that you look for and key in on when you get on a new body of water?

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The first thing I look at it the water clearity. This helps me determine what lures I am going to use. The next thing I look at is the water temp. Depending on the time of year it may help me to pin point what depth to fish. Next I look for some type of structure or cover that is like other lakes I have had success on in the past with the same conditions.

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Try to find the "lake" with in the lake.  What I mean is when you look at a new lake as a whole (especially big ones) it's pretty intimidating.  Try to find a lake that you are familiar with in the new lake.  Then go from there.

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The first thing I do is examine the shoreline. Look for cat tails, hanging branches, and trees that come out of the water. Cover like this is definately worth throwing a few lines at. Another thing to look for is vegitation in the water. Check out my other post at http://www.bassresource.com/bass_fishing_forums/YaBB.pl?num=1139635213.

Don't worry yourself to much about the water clarity, just adapt to what your working with. If the water is murky, use brightly colored baits (usually something with white, silver, or chartruse). Big bass have few natural predators, so if there were any bass in the water before, there are probably bass there now.

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Don't worry yourself to much about the water clarity, just adapt to what your working with.

It's funny you say that because I just heard KVD say that water clarity is the first thing he looks at when he gets to a new lake.  

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Guest avid

I look at the contour of the shoreline and try to imagine how it extends itself into the water.

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When i first arive at a new fishing spot. I'll check the clarity, look for different stucture and structure changes, weather conditions, and also the water temp. If i know that i will be fishing a new lake ahead of time i'll check out other fishing reports from anglers and also look at a map if possible and get an idea of what the depths are around the lake.

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I'll have already studied a topo map. Depending on the season I almost always choose an arm or cove on the lake that has an active creek running into it.  I'm looking for a creek that meanders and has good interactivity with the bank on both sides, I'm also looking for secondary points and feeding flats created by the creek.  That's pretty much were I'll spend the majority of the time.  I'll probably run the cove or arm looking for any significant cover that might relate to structure I noted on my pre-scan with the map.  After assessing the water temp and clarity I'll then begin fishing area's I think the Bass will be most active in.

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If you can find where the deepest water meets the shallowest water (such as a point tapering to a creek channel) you have a great place to start. Of course temp and clarity play a huge part but I fish for lazy fish. If they do not have to leave the living room and kitchen to live then I know where they are, all I have to do is supply the pizza with a hook in it.

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Right after I dump my boat in I check the water clarity. My next move is to run around the lake and figure what the lake has to offer. I then pick out a few areas that look promising for the time of year I am fishing. How dirty the water is helps tell me were to start deep or shallow. I then break out lures that cover vertical and horizontal presentations. I figure out which the bass want and what areas I tend to get more strikes. This could be wood, rock, weeds, deep drops, points isolated forms of cover I then expand to other areas that have the same cover. What I am trying to do figure out the mood of the fish then determine what pattern I am going to stick with it for awhile before jumping to something else. When it is early season or late season water temp makes a difference but there are days that location over rides temp so I check everything out first before committing. Areas that have a lot of bait that are active or just places that look fishy are areas that I spend time on.  Some guys get into a rut and fish areas that look familiar which is a good start but sometimes you get wrapped up in things that you know that you neglect areas that might be more productive.

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Well, the dirtier the water is the less distance the fish can see my bait so I either turn to lures that have more bulk or throw off more vibration. Also in lakes that are muddy the fish are going to be tight to cover unwilling to chase and will be shallow so this weeds out most of the lake. I tend to fish more ambush points in muddy water than in clear water. In clear water the fish are feeding mostly by sight so I tend to use faster presentations and I also move out deeper. Fish will chase a lure more so you don't need to put the bait on their nose. If your sight fishing you need to lead the fish and use natural colors. For me how clear the water is makes a big difference on how I attack the fish. Lure speed and vertical or horizontal presentations fall into the mood of the fish. Location falls into season or where the bait is available. In clear water you are either fishing feeding areas or places bass hang to chill out. In muddy water options are limited to heavy cover or feeding flats. The fish are either positioning on ambush points (places they can ambush prey) or deep in thick cover. They do the same thing in clear water but the difference is the bass have more options in clear water over dirty.

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I just look around for something to throw my spinnerbait at, then start chunking it. :)

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I guess as they say not an assignment requiring a rocket scientist at least to get started. Find our your fishing a lake on a given date and get out the lake map books. Once you have gotten comfortable with where what is and those areas that allign with what you already know about similar seasonal patterns on similar lakes then it is time to head to the lake. Once at the lake it is all about water clarity, water temp and wind up here. I suspect RW would also make a check of things like current ( a fact I was rather oblivious of until he brought it up) After that I like to cruise selected areas slowly and watch my electronics. Generally when I am doing this I run the console unit in split screen 2-D/3-D and try to start figuring out where the bait is and how fish are relating to structure. After that it is all about covering some area and letting the fish tell me where they are and what they want.

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One thing I try is to fish as the conditions will allow me to in order to hopefully establish a pattern or something that I can work off of.  Then I can always slow down later and really target certain areas.

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