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Jan 23rd, 2013
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Article 5 - Roadbeds #13527081 04/20/20 11:04 PM
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Donald Harper Online Happy OP
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ART. 5 – ROADBEDS ON CONTOUR

Roadbeds have a number of features that must be studied and looked at not only on your research maps; but when you get to the area that holds this super highway for Bass.
- Look for the roadbeds that run parallel with the contour first. This means a steep drop on the slope and a flat stare step for Bass to relate to.
- Look for the old highway crossings if any first. These are harder surfaces and much wider than gravel roads.; such as state or county roads.
- Look for the depression on the sides called the Bar Ditch. These may hold larger trees and bushes.
- Look for any fence rows on each side of the roadbed. Fences provide trees and bushes in a straight line.
- Look to the low lying area where the road crosses creeks which means a Culvert or submerged bridge. Some are built up and form a Levee. These also hold bait fish because of current flow in that narrow part of the creek.
- Look for any guard rails along the low lying areas, before and after a submerged bridge or culvert.
- Look for intersection or where another road crosses. This means a double wide surface and possible drainage control like rip rap.
- Look for sharp bends in the road which forms that irregular feature for Bass to group up on which may be rip rap for erosion control.
- Look for shallow roadbeds in the back 1/3 of all creeks that provide excellent spawning grounds. With just a 1 foot drop the fish will use it.

Before every lake was impounded there was a survey completed for drainage control at full pool. The study with all the Topo. Maps can be found at your County Agent Gov. office. I like these because many of our new maps today do not show many of the roadbeds and all the features they cross. Check every Roadbed out in your lake. Looking for all the things above. Use your side scan to quickly evaluate them before you do any fishing. Have lots of buoy markers to drop on the irregular features like: Rip Rap – demolished bridges -feeder creeks – drainage areas – culverts -pilings – guardrails – hardwoods – fence line – rock rubble. Old asphalt roads crack and buckle over time providing homes for Crayfish, bait and Bass. I have had as many as 20 of these markers out on some of the best roads covering a 1/4 mile stretch.

Roadbeds are no different than any other pieces of structure. Fishing them and selecting your baits all depends on the wind, time of year, weather conditions, water clarity and the cover available. I have caught more fish on my 5 Crigs. than any other rig. Roadbeds are some of the biggest community holes on the lake; so I am looking for the ones that run on contour first and far most.

Roadbeds On Contour:
These are the ones that I look at first. Follow them from the shoreline where you have a visual of what it looks like on dry land if possible; then follow it out and around the contour at the 5 to 20 ft depths as close to deep water as possible. Pay close attention to the deep water contours; as that contour will deliver the fish to the area and must also be irregular. Fish the roadbed from the top to the bottom down the slope covering the area around the irregular feature that you have located. Casting across the roadbed will allow you to fish both edges as well as the flat surface of the road. Automobiles going around the side of a hill and steep slop had to have a flat surface. A roadbed running parallel with the contour lines gives that flat area or Stare Step effect with that steep drop on both sides of the road.

Deep water roadbeds produce; because the slopes are steep leading out to deep water. You will want to also idle over the 20 to 30ft of water looking for bait balls and suspended fish just off the roadbed. Bait will connect to the roadbed and slope sometime during the day to feed and the Bass will follow. It provides an excellent structure for Bass to push the bait and trap them along the irregular features of the road.
NOTE: Big Bass are masters at hiding from the images on your depth finder screen. I have caught many bass over 10 lbs while fishing for a couple of quality fish as seen on the depth finder. I mark that spot when only a couple of fish show up on an irregular feature. If you catch one, there may be 10 more there.

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Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527102 04/20/20 11:22 PM
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Thanks for the information. Nice read

Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527113 04/20/20 11:33 PM
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Nice post Donald! Those way in the back of creek roadbeds are good places to run a trap or square bill!

Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527114 04/20/20 11:34 PM
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This information, all of the information Donald shares, challenges me to be more methodical in my approach. Not just for bass but for every species I target. If you can develop a core belief in the idea that, unique structure + cover + bait = predator fish, you will catch more and bigger fish.

Thanks for sharing Donald.

Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527369 04/21/20 02:27 AM
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Great information as always! Thanks, Mr. Harper.

Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: krthomas2] #13527518 04/21/20 04:30 AM
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I had a favorite roadbed on lake fork many years ago, it had a very defined creek along the side of it. Those fish would school up mid day during the summer and you could catch several 5 - 8 pound bass with a pop -r back then. It was always fun, I need to find a roadbed like that on Roberts


R.I.P. Mike "pappy" "broken rod" Green born 07-16-62 on to better fishing 06-10-08.
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Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527538 04/21/20 05:14 AM
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As always, great information. Thanks Donald!


"The fishing was good; it was the catching that was bad."
Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Mike Keenan] #13527739 04/21/20 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Mike Keenan
I had a favorite roadbed on lake fork many years ago, it had a very defined creek along the side of it. Those fish would school up mid day during the summer and you could catch several 5 - 8 pound bass with a pop -r back then. It was always fun, I need to find a roadbed like that on Roberts


Old 455 was and is great at times although it has become a community hole over the years. Used to be guaranteed as many spinnerbait fish as you wanted to catch with a few nice ones here and there...


See you on the lake and have a great day!
Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527809 04/21/20 02:08 PM
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Great information Donald and thanks for sharing the knowledge with us!

Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527857 04/21/20 02:33 PM
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Bass fishing is HARD if all you see is the surface and what is above. Like all the other things I have worked very hard at in attempt to get good enough at to get a sense of accomplishment from, I am working hard to figure out the things you teach. I never became a scratch golfer, or a Team Roper that all the heelers at the jackpots hoped drew me, but I worked hard at it and studied and tried to execute the little small details that could make me as good as I could be. These articles encourage me to slow down and execute a plan. For analytical types, (my wife calls it OCD) it is fun stuff.

Thank you


GOD is good!
Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13527894 04/21/20 02:47 PM
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Don:
Your visualization of what that road looks like under the water helps alot in fishing it, and how the fish would relate to the structure.
Thanks for sharing,
Tim


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Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13528683 04/22/20 12:04 AM
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Donald Harper Online Happy OP
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Thanks everyone for your support. Lots of guys building folders to refer to these articles at a later date. If you missed article 1 that was taken down; just send an Email so I can get it to you: fishnteacher@gmail.com

Thanks for looking and Article 6 - Bridges and Embankments will come tomorrow.
Donald


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Pure Extracts - Minnow-Night Crawler-Crayfish-Craylic


Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13528732 04/22/20 12:32 AM
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Awesome post! cheers


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Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13530020 04/22/20 06:29 PM
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Thanks Donald -- I'm one of the people putting this together into a package for continued review.


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Re: Article 5 - Roadbeds [Re: Donald Harper] #13530319 04/22/20 09:22 PM
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Thank you for sharing this information im sure countless hours and work to attain!

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