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High Water Fishing Conditions Have Thrown Me Off My Game

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I fish often in Middle Tennessee where we have been inundated with rain over the past month.  The particular reservoir I fish is at least 6' high right now, with water standing in some of the parking lots where you'd normally be driving to launch your boat.  In some places, you just launch from the lot itself.

The past two times I've been out, I've had terrible results.  Very few strikes, very few fish.  I can't figure out if the reasons for why I'm not catching fish are because of the extraordinarily high water levels or because of the lower than average water temp (water temp is 67-69 degrees still).

Normally, I'd be catching fish this time of year in 4-10 feet of water.  Are the fish traveling into these shallow areas where water normally doesn't stand?  Or are they sticking to their usual "home" areas?  In that case, I should be fishing 10-16 feet of water to compensate for the flooding ... ??

Although the high water has thrown me off, I'm reading reports of other anglers catching fish.  I've been doing most of my fishing at night -- maybe that's why I'm not catching them either??  

Thanks for the read and your tips.

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Often, bass will move up into the brush when the water is rising.  Sometimes it is difficult to find them when they move up as they can be scattered or they can be located in an area that you can't reach with your boat.  Watch your reservoir levels every day.  If they start pulling water from the reservoir and the level starts to drop, the bass will recognize the level is going down and will move back out, often near the former waterline and their old stomping grounds before the rise in the water.

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I have had that problem one time before on the Sabine river in Tx, I eventually did find the fish but they were in the backwater, extremly hard to get to , and scattered from one end of the river to the other. I switched to my aluminum boat got back in there and still had to fight for every fish. Tough situation for anyone , just takes work to find them !

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Around here, which isn't far from where you are, the fish will move on back and bury up in the brush and bushes. They will even go up into the wooded ares and may become hard to reach. They love to suspend in the bushes so you might think about a slow falling lure or a lure that will fish in the middle of the water column, like a spinnerbait.

I fish Ky./Barkley lakes and I love it when the water comes up like this! Keep in mind though that a lot of fish are spawning right now.

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That's some good feedback.  Thanks a lot.  It's contrary to what my gut-reaction was telling me, in that they weren't in that 1-2 feet of water that's up in the brush.  

I may try going this evening, but I'm not sure if I can even get my aluminum boat back in there.  Thanks for the advice!

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most of your fish are going to be scattered unless you find some thick stuff that will hold a group. fish super shallow targeting the thicker wood, brush, sparse stuff will hold fish but the thicker stuff really holds them. Also hit deep where you have a defined break or edge like an edge of trees, brush, hard bottom and grass. First target the inside edge then spin around and hit the outside edge and see if they suspended on either side. Fish super tight to the cover. Fish roadbeds and points when you find them. Areas like this are a highway to deep water that the fish can follow as the water drops. Trees too but it is more of a vertical change in position when the water drops or raises.

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just remember all of that flooded area is just that much more area for those fish to hide. so hit the flooded areas extra hard and the new structure and cover even harder.

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I had that same issue up here on Long Island 4 years ago.  It took me forever to figure out how to get into the brush.  The best technique I found was pitchin' a weightless tube as close to the brush as I could get it, and moving the tube VERY slowly in and out of the branches.  Also, don't get discouraged if you keep landing in the bushes, in fact, be patient and try to get the bait to just fall out of the brush into the water.  My feeling is that the bass see it as food falling out of the bush and the will attack it.  Also, very important to keeping a few $$$ in your pocket, use braided line.

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Shore related shallow water bass will move up and scatter; deep water bass will move up and bunch up.  

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