Thanks Van. It'll be here soon enough.
Lake Buckatabon (upper&lower), Vilas County
MOON PHASE (1%)
Senkos work on the lake. Both of them. Big time action from smaller bass.
I would get big ones jigging weed edges with an 1/8 ounce leadhead jig with a lip hooked medium fathead. You will catch pike, bass and crappies with that rig...and get cut off my muskies. Maybe you get an occasional walleye.
But that weedline jig bite is where I would get the big bass. Got one once that was 22 inches...fought better than most muskies I got off of that lake.
Hit the Larsen's Bay weedline. Hit the weedline off of the point just north of Larsen's Bay. Hit the weedline between the islands on the southeastern side. Hit the weedline around the little 16 foot basin on Lower.
If you get a little cloudcover...hit the lilly pads with buzz baits. Man they blast the crap out of those things.
Have fun. Bucky can produce 50+ bass days. But...you aren't going to find many of size unless you get out deeper.
Crappies are easy. Deeper weedlines. 1/32 ounce jig. Crappie minnow. Throw it out, jig it back. If you want, put a bobber on there. That is daytime. The greener the cabbage weeds, the better the crappies will be.
Evening, pull into the channel, Lower side. Crappie minnows with bobbers or those little pinkie jigs.
This is a universal method to put inexperienced fishers on bass:
Get a couple of bags of 5" sinking stick baits. You may go through a bunch. I prefer Yamamoto Senkos, or Strike King Ochos, but other brands may work. I have not had the same results with other brands, but YMMV. Green Pumpkin, or watermelon, are usually good choices for clear northern lakes. Texas rig them on a 2/0 EWG hook, weightless. Cast them to bassy cover like brush, emergent veggies, or a well defined submergent weed edge...and DON'T move the bait. Let it free fall on slack line, and then just watch the line for a telltale tick or movement from a fish moving with the bait. Then SET THE HOOK! If after a minute or so, nothing appears to be happening, slowly take up the slack, and feel for weight. It is feels heavy, SET THE HOOK! If not, reel it in and repeat, at a new cover spot.
My Grandson has the patience of a tornado, but loves to catch bass. He starts out wanting to chunk and wind, so we start out with something "go fast" like a crankbait, spinnerbait, or topwater popper. If the fish aren't in the mood for "go fast" we go to dead sticking Senkos. I have to tell him constantly to stop moving the bait after his cast, and when he settles down, he catches fish...A lot of fish. One would think this would convince him to make that his favorite fishing method, but no, he wants to chunk and wind, and only after he gets tired of me catching fish, and he doesn't get a bite, finally concedes to start dead sticking stick baits.
One note, this method can have a number of deeply hooked fish. If hook removal may injure the fish, just cut the hook off, and release. Bring plenty of 2/0 EWG hooks.
Taking my young nephew from Atlanta to Conover area to fish and experience God's country. He is from the south and enamored with bass fishing and is convinced there are no good bass lakes Up North. I have heard 50+ bass a day trips are normal for this lake. Having never been to Buckatabon and an infrequent bass fisherman, any tips or guidance on how to prove my Nephew wrong?
MOON PHASE (67%)
71° - 75° F
Did well last week. All on minnows, they wouldn’t touch plastics. Gorgeous weather. The crappie population looks very healthy with a great average size. We were able to get picky and only kept a couple meals worth. The LM bass population, however, is another story. Probably caught 50 in 3 days with nothing larger than 12”. Annoying would be an understatement. With the water warming again after last Saturday, the slabs should be in full spawn mode.