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Jan 23rd, 2013
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Article 3 - River Slams #13519595 04/15/20 09:07 PM
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Donald Harper Online Happy OP
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River Slams
Look at all your research maps; Paper maps, Nav. Apps, and COE maps to determine all the river slams in the lake. The River Channel is the most natural habitat on the lake. It has all the wonderful features that Big Bass will pick for their home once they stop roaming around and settle on the best spot to call home for the rest of their life. Most channels are lined with the largest hardwoods left in the lake. The lip of the channel provides the ledges for quick escape routes. The River Channel walls give the Shad a place to do what they do best; which is swim back and forth both day and night against the wall using it like a road to no where. Rivers make some really sharp bends called S-Bends. Many times Farmers had these dredged for flood reasons and the rubble is piled on the lip of the channel which provides high ground. The River is a safe haven with a super food supply and in many lakes provides a consistent deep water temperature. When something bad happens to a lake like a drought causing the loss of deep grass; the river is where Bass retreat to. Once they discover the good life in deep water habitats it is almost impossible to find more than 10% of huge Bass in less than 20 ft. of water. These are the reasons that we should become very familiar with Slams when they make contact with the shoreline. It is my opinion that we are only fish for 10% of the Big fish in most lakes and the others remain untouched.

RIVER SLAMS are not all the same. Many of them will slam against the shoreline but will not have the Irregular Contours to deliver the fish to the area. In other words they have no reason to make an attempt to go shallow. The ones that do have the best contours will deliver fish in three areas of the slam. Look at the area just before the SLAM takes place. Look at the area where the RIVER leaves the shoreline. Lastly look at the shoreline in the middle. If there are any large coves and small cuts, these will allow the Bass to push the Shad to areas where they can be trapped. These areas are usually any inside bends where the coves fork; or points at the mouth of the cut that extend out toward the middle to block the cove.

With the Irregular Contours come many Irregular Features or Hot Spots sitting between the 20 ft Contour and the shoreline. You want to key in on the areas that have Flooded Timber mixed with the rock. These deep trees provide homes for Big Bass. They never seem to come ashore which may require a fair distance to travel. Trees produce slime and that is right where they spawn. Bait fish also love deep trees and will frequent those; so the big fish never have to move. A percentage of these fish live in trees very close to the deep water of such coves and have learned this is where the Shad run takes place. They only have to move a short distance and they will be there. Not to say this is easy; but I have caught many big Bass off of RIVER SLAM areas on every lake that I have fished. I made it a point to fish the best ones with the best contours to deliver Big Bass to those three areas and also any S-Bends in the middle of the lake with high ground.

[Linked Image]

Reference The Map:
Set up your Top Water area in the back of one of the coves where the wind is not a factor. Make this an area that will not interfere with your contour fishing later in the morning. I have set this area in the North Cove. Deep water will bring you into the cove without disturbing any staging fish on the South Inside Bends. Go directly to the back of the cove to begin top water action. Now flip around and get on the 20 ft contour to start your Contour drag out and around the Northern 2 excellent gouges, which I believe to be man made for the boat house traffic. Depending on how many Hardwoods are sitting at the mouth or near these gouges; this could be the area where big fish live. It just depends on the supply of timber out in deep water. You will need to Side Scan and Down Scan from that 20 ft. contour to determine this. If you find a cluster of Hardwoods in this North Cove try fishing a Big Brush Hog Vertical down into the timber on a 1/2 oz Texas Rig. They bite just like Crappie fishing vertical and it will be quickly; as they do not want to leave home in search of food and will take anything dropped in front of them. Hold it very still just off the bottom right in the middle of the wood. They will just load up on the rod. I call these MAGIC TREES. There may be several big fish in each set. Your gouges are the key for bait fish. Fish each of them slowly keeping the bait in the strike zone as long as possible using your search baits from the front of the boat while the man in the back drags the contour.

The North Cut also has Two large Boat Houses and two Small ones. When there are only 4 in a cove the Bass will seek them out for shade. Work each of them with a Wacky Worm; but be sure to Side Scan for Brush Piles out in front on the slope and between each house. Once you work your way in and out toward the RIVER SLAM move to the middle cut. Hit the points then Idle to the back shutting down about 100 yards before you near the rounded flat in the back. In the South cove go directly to the inside bend in the back and start fishing. Let this be your indicator to continue down a shoreline back out to the RIVER. It is most likely on deep water cuts that Bass have pushed the shad to the Inside Bends near the back for feeding. The Third Cut is somewhat of a Dog Leg cove breaking SW. It will hold warm water in the Spring making it difficult for the wind to blow it out of this cove. This will be your best Spawning cove in this area. Each of the Coves have a small number of Bushes in the water for spawning and this is a Good Thing. You will have a captive audience next Spring when you get back there if the water is up again. This is a prime example of what a RIVER SLAM should be.


Each person you work with holds some promise to your future success.
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Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13519786 04/15/20 11:57 PM
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Thanks and keep posting these articles please.


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Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13519810 04/16/20 12:10 AM
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Great information as always

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13519834 04/16/20 12:30 AM
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Thank you Mr. Harper, always good to get a different perspective than your own! thumb

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13519892 04/16/20 01:02 AM
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Want to dedicate this song to Mr. Harper.

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13519900 04/16/20 01:06 AM
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good stuff!!!


GOD is good!
Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13519903 04/16/20 01:07 AM
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Thanks Guys, all of you are the best. Let me know if you have any questions and we will work through them. If you did not get to see Article 1 before it was taken down, please send me an Email: fishnteacher@gmail.com

Next Article 4 will be on Channel Bends.

Last edited by Donald Harper; 04/16/20 01:16 AM. Reason: Added a statement

Each person you work with holds some promise to your future success.
www.eletewater.com - Staying Hydrated
www.lakeoviachic.com - Booking Mexico Trips
20 Hot Spot Mapping - GPS Contour Chips - Custom Spinner Baits - Jigs -Spooks
Pure Extracts - Minnow-Night Crawler-Crayfish-Craylic


Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13519907 04/16/20 01:10 AM
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If you want to learn to bass fish, listen to Donald Harper.

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13520028 04/16/20 02:28 AM
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Great article. Thank you for taking the time to write it and share with us.

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13520170 04/16/20 04:21 AM
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Thank you Don!

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13520517 04/16/20 02:32 PM
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Jbcarroll3000, you hit the nail on the head. Don please keep posting the articles. You are the best.

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13520705 04/16/20 03:49 PM
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Very interesting. Thanks for posting.


[Linked Image]
Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13520806 04/16/20 04:57 PM
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Great read!!

Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13521354 04/16/20 11:37 PM
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Donald Harper Online Happy OP
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Thanks for all the comments guys and for the Emails asking questions about these two areas so far. I will put up the next article tomorrow when this one falls to page 2 and interest is lost. Article 4 - Inside Bends will be the next one and one of the best areas that I have caught Big Bass off of.


Each person you work with holds some promise to your future success.
www.eletewater.com - Staying Hydrated
www.lakeoviachic.com - Booking Mexico Trips
20 Hot Spot Mapping - GPS Contour Chips - Custom Spinner Baits - Jigs -Spooks
Pure Extracts - Minnow-Night Crawler-Crayfish-Craylic


Re: Article 3 - River Slams [Re: Donald Harper] #13522620 04/17/20 06:48 PM
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Thank you Donald. I can't find Article 1 on the forum. Can you give me a hint about here it might be? Did it get taken down?

Never mind. I found your reply. Sent you an email

Last edited by debtfree; 04/17/20 06:51 PM. Reason: Found new info
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