TNCBA Dock Talk #5 : "You Can't Fight the Night"

I've got rods, I've got my tackle...oh...and I've got my sleeping bag, and I've got my pillow.

...It's time for some night fishing!

Summer is finally here and it's time to shift gears. As the daytime highs reach close to 90 degrees we turn to the night so we can beat the heat and hopefully find more active bass. So, put on the fluorescent and plug in the black lights.

As we sit here preparing, there are alot of changes taking place...we have a major system moving through and dumping lots of rain in our area. South Holston is already to its brim and more rainfall is just going to put more cover in the water. Holston always presents the option of chasing smallmouth or largemouth bass and with the water higher than it was last year, I feel that largemouth are more in play this year.

After my time on the water Wednesday night, it is apparent that our hour or so of daylight is going to be crucial. Two main reports have been circulating in the last two weeks...people were reporting catching bass before dark on crankbaits along points and after that bite faded people reported catching bass on carolina rigs along points. Once dark arrived anglers switched to finesse baits to catch their bass.

Fishing Report and Conditions:

I got up to Holston a little before 8pm on Wednesday and the water temperature at launch was in the low 80 degrees and the water clarity was 5+ feet. I made my way back into a creek with standing timber first thing and had two largemouth within 15 on a green pumpkin Pit Boss and another on a white jig.

After pitching the standing timber for a few more minutes I moved out the creek to a secondary point and threw a 6XD crankbait. The point was loaded with rock patches and I caught one smallmouth.

At this point the sun had gone down and I moved to a main lake point up the river. Throwing a small brown and orange jig I caught my second smallmouth of the night. I was working the jig extremely slow...moving it inches at a time once it got into the rocks. I moved on up the lake and caught another smallmouth on a main lake point.

Around 10pm I ran down the lake and hit a couple main lake walls with no luck. The water temp by this point had fallen into the upper 70's. I moved to another main lake point down the lake and caught a non-keeper smallmouth on the finesse jig and a keeper smallmouth on the 6XD crankbait in chartreuse sexy shad.

At 11:30pm I got off the water and our final count was 4 keepers out of the 7 that I caught.

As we head into tomorrow night's tournament it will be important to have a backup plan. We are going to have a lot of rain so creeks will get muddier and 10mph winds may make it difficult to throw the finesse baits on main lake points. The crankbait will be a good plan for the wind and don't be afraid to throw a heavier jig on the main lake points.

Thinking back on all of our fish that we caught...they all came out of 8 ft. of water or more. Even the largemouth the we caught pitching, came of of standing timber that was in 8 ft of water. Also always remember that the night has a typical bite pattern...the first hour and a half is good and then the last three hours are good. So stay positive and execute well!

See you on the water!