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#11625365 - 05/25/16 10:54 AM Scanning for schools of white bass/hybrids
OllieC Offline

Registered: 07/06/09
Posts: 158
How fast should you go when scanning using the regular sonar/downscan/sidescan? I think the idea is to cover as much water as possible? Do you scan across the contours/structure or parallel to them if you think you know what depths they are concentrating in? Do you throw a buoy when you see something or do you circle back and try and confirm it or do you just mark it as a waypoint? I find it's hard to navigate back to a waypoint but easy to circle back to a buoy.

How much time would you spend cruising and looking vs fishing? Kills me to spend too much time looking at that sonar without fishing. Can you troll while scanning for schools or does that slow you down? I've tried it all without much success. Based on several recent posts I think I need to look harder cover more ground to try and find larger schools. There's always a lot of "stuff" down there that looks interesting and I think I get distracted. I think I need to keep looking to try and find a larger school. Perhaps not. Probably varies in different parts of the year. I fish Lake Somerville.


#11625628 - 05/25/16 12:19 PM Re: Scanning for schools of white bass/hybrids [Re: OllieC]
Capt Craig Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 08/25/09
Posts: 1577
Loc: Richland-Chambers
First, know the habits and habitat that the fish you are targeting wants!

Second, Regular Sonar picks up fish best. Down and side pick up lake contour best. When out looking for fish, first I use the map to locate slopes, humps, and such that I intend to fish. Then I drive the area looking with Regular Sonar to see if the fish are there and then drop a buoy (in my case, I have spotlock on the trolling motor) and fish it. If the fish vanish, are appear thin, I can use down and sidescan to see what structure is there and maybe the fish are staging elsewhere and the spot I first marked was a travel point or they are chasing bait up and down a slope and therefore I just need to fish a larger area of the structure they are holding at.

I don't troll baits, the effectiveness is not efficient. I do have a downrigger and will use it at various times to suspend a bait at a certain depth, but just driving around with a bait dragging off a rod - nope!

You need to have your sonar dialed in really well and you can pull up on a school test fish a few seconds and if no bite move a little and if no bite, move on.

It is easy to find fish, but not easy to get them to bite. Some just won't open their mouth. Never sit for hours on fish just hoping it turns on.
Capt. Craig Copeland
Licensed by the US Coast Guard

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