Lake Fork Fishing Report May 2021

Lake Fork is an awesome place to be in May! As the school year comes to a close and many are looking for activities for the kids there is no better way to spend quality time with family than fishing and doing it at Lake Fork makes it even better. Come on out and join the fun!

The water temperatures on the lake have been ranging from 65-70 degrees in most areas but with a recent warm up we are starting to see steadily warming temps. This is great because it has hovered in the low 60’s for a month due to cold fronts but mainly because of the continual number of rains. The lake is fairly turbid in a lot of areas due to the rains and has made water clarity an issue. The bass are still active though and can be found in all stages of spring spawning which makes for a multitude of patterns for productive fishing. There are still some prespawn fish to target as well as fish on beds and some even that have already moved out postspawn. The shad spawn is also in full effect so that makes for a fun bite early in the mornings as well!

The shad have also begun spawning and this has really kicked the bite into gear. Between the shad spawn and bass guarding fry, the topwater bite has been great. Poppers, buzzbaits, and frogs have been very good early and late on main lake and secondary points. Bass have also been eating the baits all day in the backs of pockets and spawning coves as well with lots of grass and flooded bushes present. The 3:16 Rising Son swimbaits are still catching some good fish as well. I have also been having a lot of success on the 3:16 “Minnow” fished on shad spawn banks and areas where bass are guarding fry. A square billed crank bait has also done really well. I like the Berkley Squarebull in sexier shad or gilly colors best as not only are the bass feeding up on shad but bream also. Lots of bream spawning has the big mamas cruising he shallows inhaling them for an easy meal.

As the bass have begun to finish their spawning, the deep bite has started to pick up. The big bass have started showing up in 16-24 feet of water. With the water warming and temperatures rising, you can expect to see more and more fish moving out to deep water to begin feeding up from the spawn. This is absolutely my favorite time of the year! These big bass are very hungry and will school up heavy in specific areas. I am targeting roadbeds, humps, points, ridges and pond dams on the main lake or at the mouth of creeks and major spawning areas. Using my new Garmin dual EchoMap Ultras touchscreen electronics has been essential in locating these schools. I am looking for bait in these areas and once you locate the schools of bait and sandbass, the bass are right with them. When I find a school of bass, I am using my electronics to determine if the bass are suspended or on the bottom. This helps me in bait selection. Most of the fish will be suspended early in the post-spawn stage and become more related to the bottom as the water temperatures warm and the thermocline starts to set up. For the suspended fish I am deep cranking with a DD22 in shad colors or throwing a deep swimbait on a jighead or a Berkley Swim shad. These baits are effective at working the middle of the water column where suspended post-spawn bass like to hang out. When the fish get on the bottom I will target them with a big Texas rig and a 1/2 oz weight with a 5/0 hook. These fish are really hungry so I like big plastics on my Texas rig. I like to put a Berkley 10” or 12” Powerworm on and give them a big meal offering. Most of these bass are very hungry so a big bait is appealing to them. I also like to employ the Carolina rig into the arsenal of post spawn techniques. I like to use a long leader (5ft.) and a big heavy 1 oz weight to drag the bottom. Trilene 20 lb test Fluorocarbon is a must with a 2/0 or 3/0 wide gap hook. Best baits on the c-rig are Berkley Powerbait 7” or 10” Power Worms, Powerbait Ribsnake, and Berkley Havoc Backslide in blue fleck, watermelon red, green pumpkin, and chartreuse pepper. You can also catch a lot of these hungry post spawn bass on a football head jig. Santone Lures makes a great football head jig and I catch a lot of bass on it this time of year. I opt for the 5/8 or 3/4 oz model and best colors are JC’s Spicy Craw, Mexican Heather, and Peanut Butter & Jelly. I will tip my jig with a matching Berkley Havoc Pit Chunk for the best size and action to catch big bass!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Moms out there this month! Well, 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 You can also visit my website for more information about Lake Fork and my guide service at You can find me on Facebook and follow my official Lake Fork Trophy Bass Guide page at
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 and God Bless,

James Caldemeyer

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