Archive for March, 2009

Chris Sinkey Spring Report 2009

March 31, 2009

You have got to love this Texas weather! One day your in shorts sight fishing, the next your bundled up trying to find where they moved off too.
My report is going to be about the same for both March and April. Mainly concentrating on bed fish, and fish cruising the flats and shallows. The main thing still is “Warm Water” like around 63 degrees. I have noticed in the past couple of weeks, that when the water drops under 59, the bite gets a little tougher. You can pretty much find a consistency all over the lake right now. I fished 3 different parts of the lake just last week alone, and was able to do about the same thing every where I went. Here’s what we are doing:

I am basically throwing 3 baits right now.
First, is a sight fishing bait. I have been sticking to more natural colors in craws and lizards. I see many boats on the lake flipping white baits on beds, and thats fine. You will get bit on them. But your natural colors will get you bit twice as fast, normally on the first 2 or 3 flips.
It’s been pretty simple. When I see a bed, the first thing I do is see what the fish does. If she moves off fast, and doesn’t return quick, she will be hard to catch, and you will most likely spend alot of time there. I look for the fish that either just barely move off and come right back, or simply make a quick 360 degree turn. These are fish you can catch pretty fast, and not waste most of your day. Flip or cast your bait PAST the bed and let the bait fall on the top edge of the bed. The reason I say this is because many angler will try to put the bait in the middle of the bed, but then you only have half the bed to work with. Use the whole bed. I am using alittle bit heavier rod this year so I can get them away from the grass and stumps quickly. The new 7’1″ Argon by Kistler in a Heavy action has been the ticket. This rod will absolutely get them out and to the boat immediately!
Second, is a whacky worm set up on a 6’9″ MH Kistler Argon rod. On these, Im using a Gamakatsu circular whacky hook 2/0 with the weed guard and 15 lbs. florocarbon line. The bait of choice has been a GrandeBass Rattlesnake in Watermelon Candy in clearer water, and Trophy Hunter in dingier water. I am usually throwing this on the colder days or if Im looking for beds. It’s always good to have some kind of bait in the water, even if your just looking around. Make long cast and SLOWLY work this bait back with a twitch, twitch and let it fall.
Third is a drop-shot rig. I am also casting this around the same areas as the whacky worm and using the same presentation with it. On these, I have gone down to a smaller bait, a 4 in. GrandeBass Finesse Worm in Black. I know what many people think, “Why fish Fork with a finesse rig?” Well, in our last tournament, I was fortunate enough to hook into a fish somewhere in the 10 to 14 lbs. range on this rig. I ended up losing the fish right at the boat, on a mistake I made. You can catch some really big fish on lighter rigs on the lake. Not only drop shots, but shaky heads as well.

The location is pretty simple right now. The backs of creeks is the best place to start looking, then just make your way out. There are fish all over the lake right now on beds. For those that dont believe in sight fishing, you can still catch these fish in the same locations with other presentations.

I would like to take a minute and thank two of my newest sponsors for 2009. Gamakatsu hooks and Black Angel Jigs. Alexander and Townsend brought me on board with Gamakatsu after the Bass Pro Shop Spring Calssic, and I’m more than excited to be representing them. I have been using their hooks since I can remember, and now have a chance to have feedback in products in the field and design process’s.
The second is Black Angel Jigs. Gabe makes one of the best jigs I have thrown and flipped. Strong hooks and materials which means no bending hooks, and no skirts falling apart. I used these jigs a bunch last month, and absolutely love them. If you get time, check out Gabe’s selection of jigs at

Also remember to those of you coming in from out of town to fish the spawn on Lake Fork, I highly recommend staying at Lake Fork Marina. They will take care of you and make you feel right at home. Give them a call or check out their website at for available dates.


John Tanner Lake Fork Report 3-26-2009

March 26, 2009

This week here at the great Lake Fork fishing has been good and we have been having a blast. There are a ton of fish in the shallows as the spawn rolls along. Here are the current lake conditions. The water temps here at Lake Fork are running in the low to mid sixties in most areas. We have had a big rain today that may have dropped the surface temps a bit which is no big deal and the Lake level should be at full pool after this evening with all of the run off we had today. We are catching a lot of fish fishing in the spawning flats around the bedding areas. With the water level being up a bit from a few weeks ago the inside grass lines have been the ticket in 1 to 4 ft of water.

Good baits this week have been wacky rigged worms in watermelon red flake, texas rigged Berkley Chigger Craws in Green Pumpkin and Berkley Hand poured Finesse Worms rigged on an 1/8 ounce shaky head. Good colors on this are purple greenie Christmas and I have been fishing these on a 7’-2” All Star medium heavy rod in the new ASR Series. The line size has been key this past week as I have been using 12 to 15 pound test on the awesome Berkley Trilene 100% fluorocarbon line. This stuff is the deal and it even comes in moss green for you green line fans! Fish the Chigger Craw Texas rigged using a ¼ ounce Tru Tungsten bullet weight and a 4/0 Mustad wide gap hook. Flip this bad boy at any light spot you see that may look like a bed as you are floating along in the shallows. Be sure and pull the pinchers apart to get proper action out of the bait. It draws major strikes!! Fish the wacky worms and the shaky head slow for best results especially after the front passes through that is coming through in the next couple of days.

We have also been catching some fish on shallow running swim baits like the Berkley Hollow Belly fished over the grass and around the slop on the banks. There has been some fish starting to feed on shad so when you see it run your swim bait through the area and hang on. This is also a great time to have a floating jerk bait tied on as bedding and post spawn bass love to smash these types of lures. Gold with an orange belly is a standard color this time of year. Speaking of standard my standard reel is the Revo series from ABU Garcia. The Revo comes in different models and I love em all. Check them out at your local tackle store and give one a try. Most of the guys on the FLW Tour use them and I agree with my buddies they are the best.

Speaking of the FLW Tour be sure to check out the FLW Tour event on Lake Guntersville which will air on Versus Country on April 5th at 12:30pm. God blessed me with a 7th place finish in that event and it was such a blessing for me and the rest of the family. I give the Lord all the honor and am thankful for all He is doing in my life. For more details about the tournament and other upcoming events go to

You know this time of year how well you do on the lake largely depends on how well you can see down in the water. Your eyewear can and does make a huge difference in your success on the water and not to mention you have to protect your eyes from the harmful UV rays. That is why I wear Oakley polarized sunglasses. I can see the bottom of the lake better and see those light spots and beds to cast to which means more fish at the end of the day. I keep an extra pair in the boat for people to wear and they are amazed at well they could see. Check them out at Lake Fork Marina as they are now Lake Forks Oakley dealer. While you are over there checking all of the cool fishing specific eyewear by Oakley be sure and enter the Lake Fork Bounty Bonanza tournament. It is still going on and a great thing to do. Go to for details or ask the folks in the bait shop about signing up. It is only 20 dollars and last through the Share a Lunker season.

Hopefully these tips will help you and yours catch more and bigger bass when you come to Lake Fork. While you are in the area be sure to go by and visit our local Ranger Boat dealer Diamond Sports Marine. They carry a full line of Ranger Boats rigged with Yamaha outboards. Tell em tanner sent ya!

Please pray for our troops and their families as they sacrifice for our freedom every day. Also please pray for my Mother and her illness and also for Tom Brady of Quitman and 3 yr old Nate Oxford of Rockwall TX as they are both fighting brain tumors. For more info on Nate go to

Good fishin and God Bless,
John and Robin Tanner
Many thanks to my sponsors.

Big Joe Spoon, Flutter Spoon, lake fork spoon

March 26, 2009

The spoon was featured in Bassmasters and we were used as the contact to purchase. I have a HUGE assortment IN STOCK and ready to ship out. We are swamped this time of year being our busy season so please have your credit card information ready when you call.

Prices are $8 for large chrome body, $9 for large gold body $7 for small chrome body and $8 for large gold body. We charge actual amount for shipping, usually $4.75 priority for small orders-

You can order from our ebay store:


Cameron Burnett
Lake Fork Marina

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Lance Vick March 2009 Video Report

March 25, 2009

Lake Fork Alligator

March 25, 2009

Our customer Steven Payne took some cool photos of this gator in Birch Creek.

Guide Tom Redington Lake Fork Report

March 24, 2009

After an extended warming trend in early March brought in a big wave of spawners, a strong cold front with heavy rains muddied up and cooled Lake Fork, slowing the bite considerably last week. The water has steadily warmed again this week and that is drawing a number of fish into the shallows to start spawning again. Meanwhile on the south end of the lake and nearer deeper water, the vast majority of bass remain prespawn and lunker females are staging on points and creeks leading to spawning areas. With a steady forecast for the next week and the New Moon as well, we’ll see another big wave of fish to move up shortly.

I expect the spawn to continue into early May, as it does most every year on Fork. By the end of April, many fish will already be in post spawn and early summertime patterns. As those females feed up after the spawn, the result is our most consistent fishing of the year for numbers of quality fish in the 3 to 7 lb range, with a shot at a 10+. That means topwaters early or all day on cloudy days. After that, it is deep water structure fishing the rest of the day on possibly the best structure fishing lake in the country. So if your plans don’t allow you to take advantage of the spawn this year on Fork, don’t despair, you can still enjoy what most locals consider the best fishing of the year on Fork—May through July.

As a side note, I added my March article to my website. It’s the first part of an in-depth 2 part series on fishing a jig in the springtime for lunkers. You can check this and all of my other bass fishing articles out at .

Lake Conditions: The lake level is currently holding steady at 402.73’ (about 3” below full pool). Much of the upper lake is stained to muddy but starting to clear, while the south has good visibility in most areas. There are still large areas of milfoil and hydrilla but the grass coverage seems to be getting thinner. I expect these areas to green up and start expanding as the water warms. Water temps are on the rise, with temps in the mid- to upper-60s in protected pockets, while the main lake was running from 58 to 62 on Friday.

Location Pattern: For prespawn and staging fish, key on points and along edges of flats or creek channels. Areas with submerged vegetation for cover will typically have the most fish. Main lake grass beds near the mouths of these coves are holding some fish, as are main and secondary points inside the coves. During warming trends, follow bass back into the creeks and check the edges of grass flats and creek channels. After the fronts, drop back to deeper water adjacent to where the fish were before the front and you’ll quickly relocate them. For spawning fish, look for protected bays in the north end of the lake or at the very backs of major creeks. As the water continues to warm and we move towards April, bass will start spawning nearer the mouths of creeks and in deeper creeks. The main lake flats are typically the last areas to spawn, often as late as early May.

Presentation Pattern: For prespawn bass, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and chatterbaits are still catching big fish, especially on overcast and windy days. With lots of stained and muddy water, bright color schemes that include a lot of orange, chartreuse, or red have worked best. For throwing shallow and medium running cranks, I’ve finally discovered a set up that delivers all the features I want. The new fiberglass 705CB/GLASS model from Dobyns Rods is the lightest fiberglass rod I’ve ever used and it’ll chunk crankbaits a mile, with an action that is slow enough to let bass engulf the bait and then keep the trebles hooked up during the fight. To maintain sensitivity, I pair this rod with the new 11% stretch PowerSilk mono in 28 lb test from Lake Fork Trophy Lures. The line has the diameter of about 17 or 20 lb test and has virtually no memory, so it casts a mile, and the low stretch allows me plenty of feel to feather my cranks along the top of the grass. This awesome set up delivers the best of all worlds—it allows me to easily fish all day with its light weight, enables me to land most everything that bites my treble hook lures, all while maintaining a good feel of the bait. If you haven’t checked out the new Dobyns Rods or PowerSilk line yet, stop by Lake Fork Trophy Lures’ pro shop in Emory and try them for yourself.

For a big bass, go with a ½ oz chatterbait with a watermelon/red/pearl 4.5” Live Magic Shad trailer and swim it in the same areas you throw a trap or spinnerbait. On calm days, you’ll typically do better by switching to a suspending jerkbait or pitching a jig and a Texas rig. Go with gold or clown colored jerkbaits on cloudy days, while silver color schemes work better on sunny days. Work these baits with a few twitches and long pauses. For a real prespawn monster, pitching heavy cover along the first breakline and creek channels is the way to go. I go with a 3/8 oz Mega Weight black and blue or green pumpkin jig with a Lake Fork Craw trailer in the blue bruiser or watermelon candy colors. For the Texas rig, I’ll pitch a Lake Fork Flipper, Top Dog Lizard, or Hyper Freak in black neon, green pumpkin or watermelon/red with a 1/8 to 3/8 oz bullet weight and slowly work it around cover. I throw these on 65 lb braided line and a heavy action 736C model Dobyns Rod to horse those brutes out before they tangle me up. For bass that have moved onto spawning flats, weightless Texas rigged or wacky rigged soft plastic jerkbaits like Magic Shads, Live Magic Shads, and Hyper Whack’n Worms become your best option. Shades of green pumpkin and watermelon are normally top colors, with watermelon/red baits with the tail dipped in chartreuse being the top producer lately.

For spawning bass, white or watermelon Top Dog lizards, Flippers and Craw Tubes work great. White baits allow you to clearly see your bait on the bed, while more natural shades of green are often needed to catch the more finicky bass. Many spawning areas have water that is too muddy to see bedding fish, so pitching Texas rigs and weightless soft plastics to any wood cover and holes in the grass will catch the spawners that you can’t see. Work your bait very slowly and keep it in place on the bottom for a long time or you’ll pass up all but the most aggressive fish.

Here’s hoping you catch the lunker of your dreams. If I can be of assistance, please contact me at 214-683-9572 (days) or 972-635-6027 (evenings) or e-mail me through , where your satisfaction is guaranteed.

Good Fishing,


Lake Fork Report

March 21, 2009

I can really only use one word explain the lake…insane.

There are so many out of state people here I feel like an out of towner. lol.

Right now there isn’t even a parking space at the marina for a boat and trailer.

Fishing is slow for most, but then again everyone I am talking to is doing bank beating. The few guys that are on fish are backing off on main lake points throwing flukes on weighted hooks and carolina rigs. Had a SLOT fish weighed yesterday that was 12.27 and looked like she was about to explode with eggs.

Fish are really close, some on beds…just a few days and things should be back to normal.

Another Lake Fork Sharelunker weighed in, 14.43

March 16, 2009

I just got word that a 14.43 was weighed in at The Minnow Bucket

Bill Sweeten 14.43

Rumor going around is 5 foot on a red trap in glade, by far the largest fish I have ever heard coming from Glade.

Grats Bill!

Lake Fork Sharelunker 13.31 3-14-09

March 14, 2009
13.13 Lake FOrk Sharleunker

13.13 Lake FOrk Sharleunker

Lake Fork grabs another Sharelunker.
13.31 White Senko 2 foot caught by Kenneth Shane from Burleson.

Lake Fork Report 3-14-09 by Guide James Caldemeyer

March 14, 2009

The big bass are on the move and the spawn has begun at Lake Fork! Despite the weather being unpredictable and a recent rash of cold weather and rain, the fishing has been spectacular! As these big bass make their way into the shallows during the spring it gives every angler the opportunity to catch a fish of a lifetime.

The lake level is currently 402.41 and rising from all the rain we’ve had the past couple of days. After all this fresh run off finishes coming in, the lake should be close to full pool again which is great for the spring fishing. The water has been fairly clear to stained in some areas from the high winds and will definitely become murkier from the rain in the backs of the creeks. It won’t take long though for the grass to filter it out and clear back up. Water temperatures have been in the low 60’s before the cold front but now some of those same areas have fallen back into the low 50’s and high 40’s even in some areas. Again, don’t expect it to stay that way long as a couple warm days and some sun will get the water right back to normal. Typical early spring weather conditions at Lake Fork!

The fishing has been exceptional lately with clients catching 20-40 fish a day with most of them being males and some real nice females mixed in there. My best pattern has been fishing the flats in 2-6 feet of water at the backs of major creeks with soft plastics. A senko type bait or a fluke in watermelon red and green pumpkin fished weightless or texas rigged with a small 1/16 oz. weight in front of a 4/0 wide gap hook has been real good! I have also been dipping the tail of these baits in chartreuse dye to compensate for the stained water. Dead-sticking these baits in the spawning areas is a great technique that doesn’t take much effort…just throw it out there and let it sit! Most anglers have a tendency to fish too fast this time of year and are not keeping the bait in the strike zone long enough for the fish to bite it. These fish are becoming very territorial around their beds and they will only allow a foreign object to sit in or around the bed so long before they pick it up and move it. If you are constantly moving the bait around they don’t have to do anything to move it and just watch it go by.

Another great way to catch them right now is on a 1/2 oz. Talon spinner bait in white or white/chartreuse as well as a chatter bait in the same colors. These baits can be a lot more effective than the plastics on some days and we have been doing real well on them especially when it’s been windy. The swim bait bite has also really picked up! We caught some nice fish last week throwing the smaller hollow body type baits in areas where the shad were thick and the bass were spawning also. White, pearl, bluegill and ayu colors work great rigged with a good 1/8 to 1/4 oz. weighted hook and slow rolled across the grass. I try to swim them as close to the timber as I can, even bang it into the trees and then killing the retrieve for a moment. When you resume reeling one will have it so hold on! The jig bite hasn’t been that great for lately but I never count it out. You always want to keep one tied on this time of year and flip it around the standing timber lining the edges of the creeks or ditches adjacent to the spawning flats for a big bite. I use a 3/8 to 1/2 oz. Talon jig in black/blue, black/blue/purple, or the “new” bama bug color.

If you are interested in fishing with a guide on Lake Fork and would like to book a trip this year, feel free to contact me anytime at (903)736-9888 or you can shoot me an email at or visit my website for more great information about fishing at Lake Fork. I have gift certificates available for any occasion upon request as well. As always, I want to thank my sponsors for their support, a big thanks to all my clients who make my job so fulfilling, and glory to God as He blesses me with His love & forgiveness each day!

Read Colossians 1: 13, 14

Tight Lines and God Bless,
James Caldemeyer