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#11547392 - 04/16/16 09:51 PM Hello All and Lake Fork Questions
Wes H Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 04/16/16
Posts: 133
Loc: San Antonio, Texas
Hey all,

I recently found this forum and have been reading some great posts for the last few hours. I've always fished a little bit, but for the last few months i've been really getting into bass fishing, and the wife is as well. I've been reading everything, practicing on a local pond, and taking the boat out to the lake at least once a week on Canyon Lake/Lake LBJ to put everything into play. I'm really enjoying learning everything I can about Bass tendencies and situational strategies, and everytime I hit the water I keep learning how much I still don't know lol. Next weekend is going to be our first 'fishing trip' and we are heading out to Lake Fork for a few days in the Briar Branch area (would like to explore as much as possible though).

I generally like fishing shallow and really tend to struggle over 10' deep so ill probably focus my efforts there. Im assuming its spawn/early post spawn for the most part, and with all the rain planned this week i'd expect it to be pretty muddy water.

My lure selection ideas right now-

T-Rigged pit boss/brush hog of watermelon colors (pegged if needed to punch through lillys (never fished these really))
Wacky Rig Senko in watermelon (pitched alongside cover)
Red Craw colored KVD 1.5 crankbait is my favorite when clear enough to not get snagged 4-10' deep
Flipping a jig with baby brush hog trailer
Watermelon fluke weightless over lillies, weighted hook or mojo otherwise



Any tips/tricks/pointing out my gameplan flaws would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks,
Wes
_________________________
fish

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#11547409 - 04/16/16 09:57 PM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
Smurfs Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 01/31/14
Posts: 2127
Loc: Fort Worth
welcome
_________________________
Micah 6:8 He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God





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#11547507 - 04/16/16 10:54 PM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
Doug R. Online   content
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 06/11/12
Posts: 8529
Loc: On the right side of "THE WALL...
If you are traveling go East.

Fork is the #1 disappointment lake in the country
_________________________
Hullabaloo, Caneck! Caneck!



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#11547530 - 04/16/16 11:14 PM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Doug R.]
Wes H Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 04/16/16
Posts: 133
Loc: San Antonio, Texas
Originally Posted By: Doug R.
If you are traveling go East.

Fork is the #1 disappointment lake in the country



Great cabin, no work, and time out on the water, what could disappoint?

Besides, someone in another Fork thread said it was looking better the other day lol wink

Originally Posted By: Doug R.
I heard the fishing is turning around and some good ones being caught in all phases of the spawn

I would tie on a big soft or hard swim bait and hit secondary and main lake points, or resign my masculinity and tie on a weightless fluke and start covering shore line flooded brush and grass...
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fish

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#11547583 - 04/17/16 12:08 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
361V Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 11/21/08
Posts: 4364
Loc: somervell county
Good news is you picked the best time of the year to limit yourself to shallow water! :-)
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#11547603 - 04/17/16 12:48 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Doug R.]
BarryH Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 03/03/10
Posts: 524
Loc: Lake Fork, Texas
Originally Posted By: Doug R.
Fork is the #1 disappointment lake in the country

Yup, anglers are disappointed with 6, 7, 8, 9, 10+ pounders every day. OMG

You might not catch any and you probably won't catch many but Lake Fork gives up BIG bass almost every day.

It's a trophy lake. On any cast, you could catch your new personal best or the fish of a lifetime.

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#11547611 - 04/17/16 01:07 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: BarryH]
Doug R. Online   content
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 06/11/12
Posts: 8529
Loc: On the right side of "THE WALL...
Originally Posted By: BarryH
Originally Posted By: Doug R.
Fork is the #1 disappointment lake in the country

Yup, anglers are disappointed with 6, 7, 8, 9, 10+ pounders every day. OMG

You might not catch any and you probably won't catch many but Lake Fork gives up BIG bass almost every day.

It's a trophy lake. On any cast, you could catch your new personal best or the fish of a lifetime.



I have been fishing Fork since it basically opened, and honestly it is not 30-35% of the lake it was even as recent as 8-10 years ago.

Fork used to be rather simple to catch 15-30 fish a day up with a half a dozen 6+ pound fish mixed in, then something happened. Now some of the top guides on the lake say a good day is a dozen decent fish, with 1 guide and 2 clients fishing.

About the same time period when the fishing began to decline, all the air boats were out "not spraying" night after night (circa 2009-12). Something happened on the lake, very strange.

And honestly your "trophy lake" theory got blown by the TTBC,.

50+ of the top anglers in the world catch less than 8 overs in 2 years total, oh and in the perfect time to catch these "trophies" in May-June.

Fork is Fork and still has some giants left, but if I were driving it would be to Rayburn or Toledo Bend.


Sorry I stated my opinion and apparently struck a nerve...
_________________________
Hullabaloo, Caneck! Caneck!



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#11547627 - 04/17/16 01:26 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
Mo_Cat Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 01/12/15
Posts: 131
Loc: LOZ
Profile doesn't show location??
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#11547654 - 04/17/16 02:43 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
BarryH Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 03/03/10
Posts: 524
Loc: Lake Fork, Texas
No nerve. I just don't understand the negativity.

No question, the lake is not what it once was. I hear it all the time from the old-timers. But the "#1 disappointment lake in the country"? Maybe if you're only comparing it to Lake Fork of 20 years ago.

I talk to visitors all the time who are amazed by the class of bass we have in the lake, people who catch a new personal best while they're at Fork, sometimes more than once in a trip.

And I hear tournament anglers complain about catching slot fish all day. Really? I'll catch slots all damn day long with a grin from ear to ear!

I fished 8 times last year; in those 8 days, I caught a 10# and an 11.25#. In my book, that's a pretty good year no matter how many times I fished. I don't know another lake I'd be able to do that. I fished Rayburn a LOT of years with nothing bigger than 8.25# to show for it.

I missed out on the early days of Fork but I think it's easy to forget how good we still have it. Maybe I'm just easily entertained...

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#11547657 - 04/17/16 03:13 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
Clark3 Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/22/12
Posts: 566
Loc: Lake fork/Fort Worth, TX
There's not a better lake to fish in my opinion. If you're a bank beater then yes there's only a few times of year you can really wear them out. But if you try to learn new things and fish off shore and find schools you can still wear them out on fork.

But be realistic with your expectations. No your first cast probably won't be a 10lb fish. It's a lake with a lot of pressure with real fish in it. You're going to have to grind more days than not but they are there and will bite. Key to fork is staying persistent and fishing places that don't look great to the naked eye. But below the water has decent grass or cover and you'll find fish

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#11547674 - 04/17/16 05:01 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
ezbassin Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 01/15/04
Posts: 12598
Loc: Mansfield, Tx.
Bring a drop shot with you to Fork also. I have been throwing a wacky senko and yum dinger type bait and a tx rigged weightless senko type bait (reaction innovation pocket rocket). If the water is muddy or if it is cloudy out use colors darker than the watermelon you are bringing.
You might catch some on a jig but I wouldn't give it much time. I haven't had a good jig bite on Fork for a while now.
Bring a top water frog also.

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#11547709 - 04/17/16 06:47 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
BassnJAK Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 06/28/09
Posts: 198
Loc: Springtown, TX
Go and Enjoy!
one thing that will really help you have a good time is always remember:
When running, Stay in the boat lanes as lake is full and there are stumps under the water everywhere. Don't be tempted to take the shortcuts. When out of the lanes idle to you spot. This approach will make you trip better no matter if the fish bite well or not.

lots of flooded grass n brush now so you may need to move around a lot.

Any day fishing is a good one.
_________________________
Do something every day that makes you happy.
Fishing is at the top of that list for me.

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#11547765 - 04/17/16 07:52 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
Jpurdue Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/28/14
Posts: 1121
Loc: NW Houston
If you are heading to Fork for the first time by yourself, without a guide, your chances or damaging your boat are probably as good or better than catching a giant.

1. Make sure you get a boat lanes chip. Once you get out of a lane, idle, there are stumps everywhere.
2. Get a guide, even they may struggle putting you on fish right now, but at least you'll learn some areas and techniques that have produced fish in the past.
3. I'm concerned about your comment you like fishing shallow. 90% of the bass fishermen out there think the same way. Outside of small window each year which has mostly passed at this point, it can be a tough strategy. You and a whole bunch of other guys will be sharing a few heavily pressured fish.
4. Calibrate your expectations. Fork gets an enormous amount of fishing pressure. Fork regularly humbles some of the best anglers on the planet. It is not an easy lake. For the bass fishing "Mecca" of the world, a whole lot of folks get plain skunked on the lake.
_________________________
"Bragging may not bring happiness, but no man having caught a large fish goes home through an alley." -A.L.

www.LunkerLore.com


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#11547904 - 04/17/16 09:37 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: BarryH]
Doug R. Online   content
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 06/11/12
Posts: 8529
Loc: On the right side of "THE WALL...
Originally Posted By: BarryH
No nerve. I just don't understand the negativity.

No question, the lake is not what it once was. I hear it all the time from the old-timers. But the "#1 disappointment lake in the country"? Maybe if you're only comparing it to Lake Fork of 20 years ago.

I talk to visitors all the time who are amazed by the class of bass we have in the lake, people who catch a new personal best while they're at Fork, sometimes more than once in a trip.

And I hear tournament anglers complain about catching slot fish all day. Really? I'll catch slots all damn day long with a grin from ear to ear!

I fished 8 times last year; in those 8 days, I caught a 10# and an 11.25#. In my book, that's a pretty good year no matter how many times I fished. I don't know another lake I'd be able to do that. I fished Rayburn a LOT of years with nothing bigger than 8.25# to show for it.

I missed out on the early days of Fork but I think it's easy to forget how good we still have it. Maybe I'm just easily entertained...



not negativity, it's called reality

I know you depend on the the flock to Fork to provide your livelihood and I understand that, but anytime some asks about Fork I will be honest and say she ain't near what she was, even in the mid 2000's. Fun lake if you know it a little, yes.

So if a person wants to drive from what sounds like the central Texas area to fish, I simply stated go east and you could have a better time.




Good luck
_________________________
Hullabaloo, Caneck! Caneck!



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#11547959 - 04/17/16 10:04 AM Re: Hello All and Lake Fork Questions [Re: Wes H]
lakeforkfishon Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/04/11
Posts: 986
Loc: Lake Fork
But, the Sand bass fishing is excellent.
_________________________
The TFF never disappoints, always entertaining.

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