Archive for December, 2008

Ray Vereen Lake Fork Crappie Fishing Report

December 30, 2008

Well folks, the weather has been great on Lake Fork the last couple of days, and the crappie fishing has been excellent. If you like to crappie fish and catch some really nice ones, you need to get out to Lake Fork. I had a limit of crappie in less than 3 hours the last 2 days. Yesterday’s bag only had 6 fish under 10 inches, and a total weight of 23 3/4 pounds for 25 fish. Today’s bag had 12 fish under 10 inches, but 13 really nice ones with the biggest 1lb 15oz. I’ve been using artificial lures (no minnows) to catch these crappie and have been fishing 20 to 30 feet of water. Find the bait and you can find hungry crappie.

Lures: 2 1/8oz crappie buster jigs.
Presentation: casting
Structure: drop-offs holding bait

If I can assist in your next crappie trip at Lake Fork, just give me a call. Gas is down among other things, and I feel there is a need for a break. So, I’m discounting crappie trips. Full day or until limit is reached for 1 or 2 persons is 200.00, and half days are 150.00. Come on out and enjoy a day on Lake Fork.


Lake Fork’s Fish On Guide Service


Lake Fork Monster Pet Bass Chowing Down

December 22, 2008

Best part of having a huge aquarium….

Obviously this fish doesn’t know the water temp on Lake Fork is in the low 50’s.


December 21, 2008

It is almost that time to go for some Crappie on Lake Fork! Just a few more cold days of the new “winter”

John Tanner Lake Fork Report December 2008

December 20, 2008

This week here at the great Lake Fork the fishing has made some changes and the winter time patterns are starting to lock in. The water temps have been in the 50’s now for a while and a good population of larger fish have moved to the shallows and will spend the winter there. These fish will hang out in the hydrilla beds that have deeper water close by. Main lake points, secondary points and large flats with healthy stands of the green stuff are good places to fish. This may seem odd to some of you who are thinking most of the larger bass spend the winter months out in deep water. However in lakes like Lake Fork that have a good amount of hydrilla, a lot of good sized bass love to spend the colder months in the comfort of this plush green vegetation that holds such a great amount of food and shelter. The same is true for other lakes that are blessed with weed beds like this. Sam Rayburn, Toledo Bend here in Texas and Lake Qauchita in ARK are other good lakes that hold a lot of shallow fish in the winter due to the hydrilla beds. These are great fisheries but do not have the number of monster bass like we are blessed with here at Lake Fork. When the larger fish start showing up in the shallow weeds as the water cools, a great bait and probably the most popular choice is a red or crawfish colored lipless crank bait. These baits cover a lot of water and generate a good number of reaction strikes out of the bass when ran over the top of the hydrilla. Berkley Frenzy and rattle traps are good Or for more booking info click on the trip info section and for a look at some happy folks holding their Lake Fork Trophies be sure and click on all of the photo pages.DSM and see Ben Hogan to schedule a test ride in a Ranger. They are awesome and still built one at a time. Tell em tanner sent ya !Good fishin and God Bless,
John and Robin Tanner

Visit for more info.
Many thanks to my sponsors.

How do you run a lipless crankbait over the grass with out getting tangled you ask? Well that is the idea. As you are running the bait over the weeds and you feel it start to get hung , rip the bait free with a snap of the wrist and keep reeling. As the lure rips free and deflects off of the weeds , that is when ole big mama will take a wack at your crank bait. It is a blast to say the least! This time of year you may not catch as many fish as you would say in the summer months but every bite you get is usually a quality bite. That’s what I love about fish Lake Fork in the winter months, December, January and February. This time of year is also a good time to fish a jig or even a jerk bait. The jig is good while fish around trees on the edges of the grass and along the creek channels. While flipping the wood I like to use the 3/8 or ½ ounce Talon Jig in black brown or PB&J colors. On the grass edges I like to drag the ½ ounce Talon football head jig in the same colors. On the jerk bait the Lucky Craft pointers are good in chartreuse shad and American shad colors as well as the trusty ole Rogues. Fish the jerk bait over the deeper grass tops and dead stick it as much as you can between rips. Now where is all of this hydrilla you ask? Well there is a ton of places to fish here on Lake Fork that have it. But, here is a little tip. While you are running the lake keep your eyes peeled for big flocks of coots feeding along the shorelines. These guys usually hang out over a weed bed. Stop and if you see them diving down and pulling up strands of the weeds pull in there and start fishing. Turn on your Lowrance and see hoe deep the grass is growing and fish the edges of it. I have found a lot of good fishing holes like this not only here on Lake Fork but on other lakes where I was searching for hydrilla. In last January’s issue of Bassmaster magazine I did a feature article with Wade Bourne on this style if fishing. I know it has been a while back but if you still have that issue on your arsenal dig it out and give it a look. The article was titled pattern of the month. It has some other good info on fishing the grass this time of year. But what about the deep fish ? Well you can still catch some deep ones on spoons, tail kicker type baits, drop shots as well as deep running swim baits. They don’t all move shallow, but day in and day out I like my odds better while fishing the grass this time of year especially when the water temps hit the low 50’s and below and I am looking for big fish. Tackle tip: The best rig I have found for cranking the grass with a lipless crank bait is a 7 ft medium heavy Shimano Crucial Cranking rod along with a Shimano Chronarch reel or one of the new Curados either spooled with Gamma 14 to 16 pound Edge flouro carbon line. Well hopefully these angling tips will help you catch more and bigger fish this winter. While everyone is out there deer hunting you can be here fishing for the big ones. Speaking of big ones you know it is share a lunker time from now until the end of April. That being said the Lake Fork Chamber of Commerce is putting on a fishing tournament that last through the share a lunker season. Go to or for details. Or if you are by Lake Fork Marina go in the bait shop and ask them about it. It is pretty cool ! Remember to dress accordingly this time of year and always wear your life jackets. We pulled a couple of guys out of the lake last year about this time and man it was a close one for both of them. I got my hands on one of them as he was starting to go down. If they would have been wearing their life vest it would have been not such a close call. Gear Tip :For some awesome winter fishing gear go to I have been wearing their gear for a couple years now and I can tell you that they make the warmest and the most water proof clothing available. Good Fishing if you are headed this way. If you are interested in booking a trip with us here on Lake Fork call us toll free at 1-800-865-2282 or drop us a line at

While you are in the area be sure and go by and visit Diamond Sports Marine our local Ranger Boat dealer. They carry a full line of Ranger Boats powered by Yamaha outboards. I just got my 09 model Z-21 rigged with a Yamaha series 2 250 hp recently and I love it. Go by

Please pray for our country and our troops and their families as they sacrifice for our freedom. Also continue to pray for my mom Peggy Tanner and Bobby Renfro as they battle health problems. Thank you for your prayers and remember Jesus is the reason for the season ! Read Luke 2 :1-14.

Lake Fork Report December 15th 2008

December 19, 2008

Lake Fork and Local Hot Water Lakes: December 15, 2008

Lake Levels:

Fork – Full
Monticello – Full
Welsh – Full

Water Clarity:

Fork – Clear
Monticello – Clear
Welsh – Gin Clear (south end), stained (north end)

Water temp:
Fork – varying from 42 – 52 degrees
Monticello – varying from 60 – 75 degrees
Welsh – varying from 64 – 85 degrees

Weather: Cold front today and tomorrow with highs in the 30’s, with a warming trend toward the end of the week to upper 70’s.

News: Happy Holidays from East Texas. My family, wife Kerstin and daughters Emmah, Lakyn and I wish you a very Merry Christmas. Remember, Jesus is the reason for the Season.

Fishing Report

Lake Fork: No Report due to time on hot water lakes. But, if I had to go right now I would take plenty of dynamite and some hand grenades as I am guessing the bite would be tough due to the cold fronts this week!

Hot Water Lakes: This past week the fishing on Lake Monticello and Lake Welsh has been outstanding, as expected this time of year. Cold fronts help the fish bite better. The more it snows, the better the bite.
Lake Monticello spawn is right around the corner. I have seen 7 or 8 beds in the last week. But none of the big females we are catching have shown any sign of spawning yet. I have been targeting these pre spawn fish with a Sebile Flatt Shad and a Wave Fishing Swim Bug. The lipless Flatt Shad can be fished with a cast a retrieve. Varying this retrieve from slow to fast with a sudden stop can produce some ferocious bites. The Swim Bug is best using it Texas Rigged on a ¼ ounce bullet weight and a 4/0 wide gap hook. I like to fish the light weight on Monticello due to the high levels of silt on the bottom. Colors of the Flatt Shad have not made a difference as this has been strictly a reaction bite. The best colors on the Swim Bug have been Watermelon Red and Sweet Potato Pie. For shear numbers a drop shot and shakey head will put them in the boat. My favorite bait for this has been the Tiki Trick Worm in Watermelon Candy.

Lake Welsh spawn is coming to a close. Yesterday all but one of the big females we caught was showing every sign of post spawn. Fry can seen in the shallows around lay downs and hydrilla. The biggest producer on Welsh has been imitating a bream with a ¼ ounce Revenge jig in Chartreuse Chameleon. (Those fish on Welsh love a jig) Early and late in the day try a Sebile Splasher around flooded vegetation and lay downs coming off the shore. This will for sure get you bit!

There have been a few disastrous accidents on Lake Monticello and Lake Welsh in the last two weeks. Anglers are navigating these lakes without due regard. I am seeing boaters driving at high rates of speed in timbered areas. One bad accident tore a boat in half on Lake Monticello this past week. Another bad accident resulted in a boat running on plane to hit a stump. This boat stopped and the three anglers did not. The three of them were stranded in the middle of the lake, swimming, with air temperatures in the 30’s. No major injuries were reported. Please go slow if unsure of the boat lane and please wear your Life Preservers.

The 2009 season is setting up to be a great year for bass fishing. Lower gas prices and full lakes will sure make it easier for anglers to spend time on the water. I look forward to all of my readers having the opportunity to fish with me this upcoming season.

Thanks to my sponsors Wave Fishing, Costa Del Mar Sunglasses, Gotcha Distributing (Dealer inquiries-contact Ron Peterson at 903-856-8083), Sebile Revenge Jigs, Arkie, Power Pro Fishing Line, Seaguar Fishing Line, Gene Larew.

Feel free to contact me anytime via email or by phone 903-918-9469 if you ever have any questions about Lake Fork or to book your next guided fishing trip on this fine fishery. I hope to see you soon!

Guide Clint Wright
Lake Fork Day and Night Guide Service

Lake Fork Marina Fishing Report Photo Contest

December 13, 2008

I am in the process of amassing a ton of photos of bass from Lake Fork. All photos will be uploaded to: Lake Fork Marina Photo Gallery and viewable by anyone.

It doesn’t matter how old the photos are, the fish just have to come from Lake Fork. Each photo gets assigned a number, and drawn from a hat at random. So the more photos you submit the better chance you have to win. Please keep it to decent quality photos, scanned photos are game as well- I would love to add some photos of the lake before it filled-

The size of the bass doesn’t matter. You can email them to Please leave your name and where you can be reached.

The winner will get 1 free night in the motel along with a boat slip good until Feb 26th of 2009. Contest ends 12/24/08, will announce winner on Christmas day.

Good Luck!!

UPDATE: We have a ton of photos being sent to our email! – Thank you all so much.

Lake Fork Report 12-13-2008

December 13, 2008

Short report-

Fishing is a bit on the slow side.  The afternoon bite starts about 2pm and ends at dusk-  Don’t waste your time deep, find grass on a windy bank (doesn’t have to be hydrilla, coontail and milfoil do the trick) and cover a lot of water.  5/8oz Yo-Zuri traps have been producing well for me, no monster fish yet but nothing under 3lbs.  My numbers have been averaging about 5 per trip in the afternoon with fish up to 7lbs.
What is making this tough is the wind, we haven’t really had a break from very high winds in the afternoon lately so I have only been going out a couple of afternoons a week.
Catfish are insane right now.  Some customers bank fishing are catching limits on night crawlers, most in the 2.5lb range but they did weigh a 13lb channel cat.

Crappie- Slow, the normal 515 bridge and mainlake points at the dam have been out of the question with high winds.

Lake Fork Guide List

December 1, 2008

If you are planning on a trip for March/April I would recommend you get it done before the first of the year.  Here is the most comprehensive list of active guides I can come up with.  Feel free to comment if you can think of any I left out.

Larry Barnes 903-765-3858
James Brumfield 903-765-2548
Marcel Bryson 903-765-3629
Craig Cain 972-977-5865
James Caldemeyer 903-736-9888
Dennis Canada 903-473-8739
Rick Carter 903-765-3474
Shane Casey 972-365-7642
Joe Chancy 972-951-0818
Tony Clark 903-473-3956
Rick Collis 903-473-2047
Brian Duplechain 903-765-3131
Tom Evans 903-383-3059
Jimmy Everett 903-765-3980
Stephen Fatherree 214-215-9854
Skeeter Fowler 903-292-9659
Johnny Glass 903-765-2731
Charlie Hodges 903-474-1203
Jeff Gun 903-765-2155
Jason Hoffman 903-456-3691
Randy Hutto 903-975-0037
Hollice Joiner 903-342-5359
Kenneth Jones 903-850-5555 -Catfish
Jeff Kirkwood 800-965-0350
Lee Knight 903-765-2548
Larry Large 903-765-2548
Larry Lovell 903-473-1555
Rick Loomis 903-383-3050
Richard McCarty 903-383-2864
Marc Mitchell 903-438-0266
Mike Moody 903-839-1511
Terri Moon 903-383-7773 -Crappie
John Morris 903-454-6910
Mike Moser 903-243-1416
Randy Oldfield 903-962-3056
Gary Paris 903-763-2801
J.W. Peterson 214-236-3320
Chuck Pratt 903-882-9038
Jim Purdy 972-495-6073
Jim Reaneau 903-383-3320
Tom Redington 214-683-9572
Brooks Rogers 903-780-0680
Micheal Rogge 903-850-8855
Sherry Ruslink 903-383-7310
A R Sachtleben 903-765-3619
Dough Shampine 903-474-0508
Dennis Sheley 903-629-3826
Dan Silcox 903-765-3611
Gene Snider 903-383-7668 cell 903-638-1215
Dennis States 903-473-2039
Barbara Stevenson 903-765-3120
Mark Stevenson 903-765-3120
Dean Stroman 903-383-7214
John Tanner 903-763-0338
David Vance 903-629-7699
Ricky Vandergriff 903-530-2201
Ray Vereen 903-473-9528
Lance Vick 903-312-0609
Tim Walker 903-765-3613
Bill Welborn 903-768-2251
Lee White 903-383-2725
Richie White 903-439-2266
Mark Woodruff 903-765-9033
Clint Wright 903-342-3497