Welcome to Lake Fork everyone! February is here. With all the crazy weather it seems everyone has cabin fever and are heading out to the lake to take advantage of the early spring opportunities to catch a giant Lake Fork bass. This time of year is an exciting time of year because you can catch a giant on any given cast as the big females prepare themselves for their annual spawning activities. Here are a few tips and techniques that will help you in pursuit of a Lake Fork trophy bass...
We have had some recent rains which have brought the lake up to 402.30 which is about 8 inches below full pool so we could use a bit more to get it full. That’s okay though because I can assure you the fishing this spring will be amazing even if we do not get a lot of rain. With the low water the fish will be concentrated specific areas and grouped up tighter trying to share the same spawning areas. February is more of a time to target the fish that are in pre-spawn staging patterns though. Look for fish to be holding on main lake points, secondary points (at the mouth of major creeks), or along the creek channel edges adjacent to spawning flats.
Water temperature is probably the single most important factor to locating active fish this month. You will want to concentrate on areas where the water is warmer or on a warming trend. Having an accurate temperature gauge is important. I just got my very first new Bass Cat boat and I’m very impressed! I rely on my Garmin Echomap Ultra units, mounted at the console and bow, to deliver and they don’t disappoint. Live Scope is amazing and unmatched compare to other new forward facing sonars! Most water temps are going to range in the low to mid 50’s this month but fishing in 56 degree water is more productive than 52 so keep an eye on your electronics for changes throughout the lake.
The best patterns for me in February are always in the shallow to mid-depth regions. I like to target main lake areas or secondary points at the mouth of any of the major creeks. A lot of fish stage out in these areas until the water temperatures rise in the spring and the backs of the creeks are conducive for spawning. I start off shallow in the 2-8 ft range and fish reaction baits like a red/orange lipless crank bait like a Berkley Warpig in 1/2 – 3/4 ounce sizes. If you can reel it past, rip it off the grass, bang it off a tree, etc.... These fish will react to it and bite it. Other great choices for reaction baits are a square billed crank bait like a Berkley Square Bull or I also use a lot of 3/8- 1/2 ounce chatter baits in green, white, or chart/white. Covering water and making lots of casts at cover along the bank will pay off. Remember to hit everything at different casting angles to ensure that you are covering the areas thoroughly. If you catch a few fish in a certain stretch of bank be sure and back track and make multiple passes through that area. There is always a key feature holding fish in these areas. Sometimes it’s a depth change like a ditch or drain, bottom change from rock, to sand, or vegetation that is causing the fish to hold there. If the fishing gets tough up shallow I like to back off a little deeper and throw a little
heavier lipless bait like a 3⁄4 oz model. I will also break out the suspending jerk bait on an Abu Garcia Veracity rod with an Abu Garcia Revo reel so that I can cast it long distances. The jerk bait can really save the day especially when it’s cold and the sun is up high under calm wind conditions. I like to throw gold, orange, clown, and Pro blue. I like to use a smaller line on these like 15 lb Trilene 100% Fluorocarbon if I can get away with it. Otherwise if I am in heavy cover I opt for 17 lb. I will also pull out to the creek channel edges this time of year and flip timber. The depths I target are 8-14 ft. With the low water conditions you can really read the water and tell exactly where the creeks run through the middle of the areas you are fishing. I will take a Santone 3/8 oz or 1/2 oz rattlin flipping jig and pitch it at every tree along the channel edges. Pay attention to the direction the wind is blowing as the fish will position themselves a certain way on the timber according to wind direction and channel drops. I like to focus on areas where the creeks make a bend and especially if it makes a bend near a point or any other bottom structure. My favorite jig colors in February are black/blue, black /blue/purple, and Texas craw. I will trail my jig with a Berkley Powerbait Chigger Craw. The big bass on Lake Fork can’t resist this jig combination! The deep bite is not nearly as productive, but you can occasionally find a few fish that will bite in 16-24 feet of water on spoons, tail kickers, Carolina rigs, and drop shots.
I hope this helps anyone that’s coming out this month to start the year off chasing big bass. If you would like to fish with me this year, I still have a few dates available. My 2021 schedule is filling fast so start making your plans now and contact me to get on my schedule as soon as possible. I have gift certificates available for those of you that are interested in purchasing a friend or loved one a guided trip on Lake Fork. You can contact me to make your reservation at 903-736-9888 or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org You can also visit my website for more information about Lake Fork and my guide service at www.officiallakeforktrophybass.com You can find me on Facebook and follow my official Lake Fork Trophy Bass Guide page at https://www.facebook.com/lakeforktrophybassguide
I just received my new boat for the 2021 season, a Bass Cat Cougar FTD. It’s an amazing boat and I couldn’t be happier to be serving my customers on Lake Fork as one of the newest members of the Bass Cat Family! If you’re interested in checking out any of the Bass Cat models be sure to reach out to R & R Marine in Pittsburg, Texas. Steven Stroman and his crew have amazing sales and service as well as a complete tackle shop. I would like to thank all my sponsors that support me. I am looking forward to representing them again this year on Major League Fishing Big 5 circuit as well as serving all my great guide clients on Lake Fork! Sponsors: Toyota, Carhartt, Bass Cat Boats, Mercury Marine, I Am Second, Berkley, Abu Garcia, Garmin, Santone Lures, Costa Sunglasses, Power Pole, 3:16 Lure Company, Elite Tungsten, Johnson Communications, and Bass Boat Technologies.
Romans 15:13- May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Tight Lines & God Bless,