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#10859937 - 05/20/15 10:27 PM Funnel points, what did John Hope mean?
stratos1760dv-Jeremy Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 10/09/12
Posts: 508
Loc: McKinney, TX
It is not clear in my mind yet what I am looking for on contour maps that would be considered a funnel point. I understand bridges are one and gullies that are very narrow and near another type of structure. I guess I will look for two type of structures and two types of cover in the same area. I assume if I mange to catch a big fish in that area it will be at the funnel point in that area. I would love to see some pics of what a funnel point looks like that is not mentioned above. I understand the area should responsible a larger area becoming very narrow like a funnel. Any tips help would be appreciated. By the way is John Hope still giving lessons by chance? Thanks

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#10859979 - 05/20/15 10:51 PM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
K.D. Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 05/04/02
Posts: 13147
Loc: Hurst, TX
Take a piece of paper and draw a series of v's on it, each larger than the previous one and consistently spaced apart. With the top of the v facing away from you you are looking at a point. The shallow water is on top and assuming 5 ft intervals, drops off equally by 5 feet on each line.

Now, turn the paper around so the tip of the v faces toward you. You now have a funnel point. The water in the middle is deeper than the outter edges and it funnels down to a point.

In his books he said if you fish these at sun up and sundown for an hour, within a week you would catch one over 6 lbs. (best I can recall without looking it up) EDIT...the 6 days was 3 days before and after a full moon


Edited by K.D. (05/21/15 11:52 AM)

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#10859989 - 05/20/15 10:58 PM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
K.D. Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 05/04/02
Posts: 13147
Loc: Hurst, TX


Look at this image. Just to the left of the number 1100 inside the blue marking, you have a point. Now move to the left and look at the point coming south, with the blue creek channel in the middle of it. That's a funnel point and fish move up and down it while actively feeding.

You have to look at the contour lines to see if the middle is shallow or deep to see if it's a point or a funnel. The number 1200 up top is right on top of another example

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#10860135 - 05/21/15 01:21 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
collincountytx Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 10068
Loc: Dallas, TX
Shallow funnel

Deep funnel

Another funnel
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#10860470 - 05/21/15 08:28 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
Bissett Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 07/09/13
Posts: 4006
Loc: Broken Arrow, OK
So do you want to be fishing the edges of these like where they are dropping off?
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#10860501 - 05/21/15 08:38 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
JacksonBean Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 06/23/10
Posts: 3163
Loc: Greenville, TX
Jeremy,

What I imagined was something (similar to your description) like the bridge across Ray Hubbard, or any lake for that matter. John wrote how bass don't like to utilize their swim bladder if they don't have to and will therefore cruise along at a certain depth to get from point A to point B. So I imagine a fish being north of the bridge wanting to get south of the bridge would have to be "funneled" through this area under the bridge and therefore you'd be making higher percentage casts concentrating on these bits of contour. You can imagine the same situation existing around an island, a main lake point, or any rise and fall in the structure of the lake. There are pathways just like cows make in a pasture that allow fish to move about at a given depth. Where those converge are your funnels.

I spoke to John a little over a year ago and he was still down in the Amistad / Falcon area. He was a very nice gentleman and invited me down to do some fishing with him because I had questions like yours about the things he had discovered.

Tight lines,

J

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#10860502 - 05/21/15 08:38 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
bradnitro175 Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 07/11/08
Posts: 3784
Loc: Dallas,tx
Great info.Ive never tried this I've always heard bridges called funnel points tho.

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#10860580 - 05/21/15 09:02 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
collincountytx Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 10068
Loc: Dallas, TX
Doug Hannon, Bill Murphy, and John Hope's studies may have had different result and conclusions because they were studying bass in different environments. Doug Hannon's studies were primarily in shallow Florida rivers and river system lakes. Bill Murphy fished deep mountainous California reservoirs susceptible to large fluctuations in water level while John Hope tracked bass in Texas where we can have cold winters and extremely hot summers.

However, there are many similarities to their findings.
The primary commonality is that big bass are efficient. They don't roam or chase, they tend to stay in a small area year round. They achieve this by finding the best locations in a body of water: they seek well protected areas that provide the most stable temperature and food environment. In Florida, that would be a thick grassy weed bed in close proximity to a natural spring that provides a more constant temperature. In a lake surrounded by mountains, it would be a multidirectional drop off that the bass can move up and down depending on drought (water level). In Texas, with our sometimes extreme weather patterns, bass will seek an area with easy access to deeper and shallower water. In Texas, those areas are close to creek channels, which also provide excellent cover (timber and vegetation that grows along a creek)

Funnels and multidirectional drop offs are not exclusive of one another, and are often found in the same location

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#10860659 - 05/21/15 09:27 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
Brad R Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 03/09/15
Posts: 792
Loc: Texas
The topography is one aspect of it as it relates to fishing. It points to developments in the water.

Everyone has seen videos of kayakers running those fast river courses. The water can be moving along slowly, relatively speaking, the kayaker stages up on the high side of two boulders pinched together where he'll then run down between them. As the kayak shoots the small gap, it speeds up dramatically . . . with the water. A funnel.

The physics here is a broad flow of water being squeezed down and that old "conservation of angular momentum" thing we studied in school science classes.

You see the same effect if you walk downtown Fort Worth on a windy day. The wind speed increases dramatically around high rise buildings as the volume of air is pushed through less space.

Underwater "funnels" operate the same way, create different water speeds for two areas otherwise adjacent to each other. And, since the funnel has that topography, a cool primary reason it may be good to fish them is the old adage that it good to fish areas with depth changes.

So, you are a LMB, essentially a professional ambusher, and prefer to sit passively. You'd want to position yourself in relatively quite water, wait for dinner to come to you in the nearby current. I would suppose if you are a SMB, where they are known to be more actively positioned right in the currents, you'd situate yourself in the current itself facing into the flow and then attack what blows your way.

I'm the old man in the fishing canoe up on top trying to maintain a position, any position! Ha!

Brad

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#10860701 - 05/21/15 09:38 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
CoachPayne Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 05/30/14
Posts: 167
This is ABSOLUTELY awesome stuff. Thank You guys so much for all of this wealth of knowledge. Keep it coming.
flehan

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#10860821 - 05/21/15 10:13 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
catslayer Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 03/03/08
Posts: 3353
Loc: Straight outa Johnson county.....
You hear people in texas call them DRAINS a lot in texas too. Like in amistad especially. They say oh they were in drains with trees in 12 fow. Or somtimes they are "on the point" most of the time this means they are on the drop off that "defines" the funnel on the main lake side.coulincounty's pic is great
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#10860897 - 05/21/15 10:35 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
JPeel Offline
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 10/19/05
Posts: 5565
Loc: 3gunning somewhere
My most productive big fish funnels are some of the most obscure and insignificant looking places when you see them on a map, and many don't even show up on a map. A little wrinkle on a flat, hump or ridge can be the difference maker.
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the fisherman formerly known as Blu-Ranger....

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#10861004 - 05/21/15 11:22 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
JacksonBean Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 06/23/10
Posts: 3163
Loc: Greenville, TX

I do remember him mentioning that the funnels didn't have to be associated with the shoreline. You could have a transition point out in deeper water that was a pathway to a feeding ground in shallower water, not necessarily next to the shore.

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#10861048 - 05/21/15 11:34 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
K.D. Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 05/04/02
Posts: 13147
Loc: Hurst, TX
In my conversations with John Hope many years ago he made a distinction between funnels and funnel points. What Dr Bean described is what I have understood as a funnel. Another example of his definition is a tank dam in 20 feet of water that's 5 or 6 feet on top. Even though a bass can swim over the top, he's not likely to. He will swim parallel and find a break in the dam, if it exists, and swim through that. This is why tank dams are so effective at holding fish and also why you should always fish both sides.

A lot of terms have gotten muddied over the years and none worse than cover and structure. In a conversation with him at a boat show he explained to imagine a football field sized flat. If I tell you to hang out there for an hour and I come back 2 hours later there is no telling where you mightbe. If I put a tree in the middle of this otherwise void flat, odds are very strong you will be sitting under the tree leaning up against it for support and using the tree for shade.

Cover is something added to the lake like bridge pilings, trees, boat dock supports, brush piles, hydrilla, . structure is a change in bottom depth like a point, ridge, tank dam, etc.

So when he talks about increasing your odds of finding a honey hole he gave the example of finding two types of cover on top of two types of structure. A point is structure, a creek channel swing on the side of the point is 2 types, add a tree and some grass and you have a 2 and 2 combination. Or a fence line and grass.... You get the idea.

At one point lots of guys tried to correct people as these terms were used wrong but most have given up and just accepted it as part of the misinformation the Internet is full of.

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#10861106 - 05/21/15 11:53 AM Re: Funnel points, what did John Hope mean? [Re: stratos1760dv-Jeremy]
Sparlin Offline
Angler

Registered: 07/15/13
Posts: 396
Loc: The Colony, Texas
This right here is why I TFF!
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