Anticipating the Transition

This week was close, not quite there yet for me but we’re close and I can feel it in my bones. For weeks on end most of my offerings have been slow moving and I’ve been relating my baits to the bottom. Whether it’ ‘s a worm or a swimbait, it has been crawled on the bottom with the speed of a three toed sloth and I’ve grown tired of the pattern. My fish brain tells me to anticipate the cheese move and go looking for new cheese and with the water temps on the rise and the fish moving to the shallows, it’s just a matter of time before I rely heavily on the moving and swimming baits, rather than the slow, crawly ones.

It certainly looks like we’ve turned the corner on the lake temperatures and hopefully we’ve seen the last of the water temps in the 40’s for a while. I know we are in store for another artic blast or two before spring arrives, but this week has given us a glimpse as well as hope for warmer days. Another good sign that spring is just around the corner is the fact that Lisa came out of her fishing hibernation and jumped in the boat a few times this week. Each year when the air temperatures hit the 70’s Lisa knocks the winter rust off her hook setters and dominates our fishing competitions year after year. I can’t explain it but I usually take a beating on our outings no matter how badly I front end her and make the choice casts. She has learned to adapt, and she has obtained this 6th sense in fish location from the back of the boat. I’ve grown accustomed to it and just net her fish like a man.

On Monday Lisa had the day off some about mid-morning we set out in the creek to see if you could find a few shaky head fish. Lisa throws a pretty mean shaky head, and she has the touch when it comes to feeling those really light bites with the shaky head so we both enjoy throwing it. We hit rocks and docks with a small limit to show for our efforts. We ended the morning with a small limit on rocky points, and I wasn’t very impressed with the morning bite at the places we fished. It was a little chilly but a fun morning and I’m glad Lisa got to catch a few to get her week started.

I know there’s going to be a good moving swimbait bite right around the corner and I’m incorporating more and more moving baits in my arsenal now. The sure bite for me has been the shaky head for the last few months but I know that very soon the fish will come out of their slumber and start running down shad in the shallow areas and sometimes out over deeper water. For these fish I have a quarter ounce Damiki coupled with a Cast Co. Prodigy or a 2.8 Keitech. If I see anything come to the surface and I can get to it fast, I’m throwing the little swimbait. I’m also throwing it if I see suspended fish on the graph, usually on points. When these bass get on the little moving swimbait bite in early spring, the shaky head can become a distant memory and we can go right from slow rolling the swimbait to topwater. When I looked at my blog reports from the first few weeks in March and all those big fish I caught last year on the little swimbait it made my mouth water even more. I had some tanks in early March and some of my biggest fish of the year. If you have time, take a look at March of 2022 in my archives and check out some of those fish on the little swimbait. I expect that bite to take off very soon and I’m devoting more and more attention to the moving stuff now that the water temps are on the rise.

Tuesday morning Chris and Joe from C&S Marine got me fixed up with the 20-hour on the new powerhead. I was in and out of there in less than 2 hours and back on the water by lunch. A huge thanks to my friends at:

On Tuesday I was back at it with the shaky head, and I hit the rocks and docks with some success. I could tell that the dock bite was starting to turn on late in the sunny afternoon and the fish were starting to relate to the shallower docks. That bite is mainly driven by the sun so the success rate on docks goes up considerably when the sun is out in the afternoon and evenings. I finished the day with some nice fish, and I could tell more fish were moving to the shallows.

I was back at it on Wednesday afternoon and with the warm weather and sunshine Lisa jumped in the boat with me after she got off work. We started running docks about 5:30 and it just kept getting better and better. It was like every empty slip had a fish in it, every spud pole had a fish on it, and we ended up with 7 pretty nice fish in a matter of an hour and a half tops.

I was out again both yesterday and today for a while, and basically for this week it was the same deal, rocks and docks with the shaky head, but with the cloud cover moving in, the dock bite kind of fizzled at times so I focused on the rocks during the cloud cover. The shaky head rig we used this week was the TRD and Big TRD mounted on a Trokar Pro-V tungsten 1/4 ounce round head or a Trokar Shell Buster football head in 1/4 ounce. I recently talked about the TRD worms from ZMan in my last YouTube video and we used it almost exclusively this week.

As of today, the water temps were in the mid to upper 50’s and the lake is a few inches below full pool. The corps has been generating a little more than usual this week. I look for the moving bait bite to pick up for me soon, but this week was more of the usual worm bite. Here’s a few more of our fish from the week.

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