With a C/R season in place until July 1st to protect the vulnerable spawning fish from harvesting and with most anglers practicing total C/R all season, the population of this species has exploded in the past 10 yrs. With one of the largest average sizes of Smallmouth bass, many bass fishermen are secretly targeting Eagle Lake! One of the best spawning sites and early season hot spots is right in Myer’s Bay, within site of the dock. Some of the best areas to try from the end of May through late June, are bays with south and east exposure to the sun. This results in the first warming water of the season. Look for the characteristics of a sand or mud marbled bottom, some small boulders and broken rock, drowned logs, and reeds. Presentations start with plastics like Texas rigged flukes as jerk baits, tubes, ring worms rigged, drop shotted, or on jigs and seikos that are wacky rigged, jigs and grubs, etc., x-raps, pop-r and tiny torpedo, 3/8-1/2 oz. spinnerbaits. When all else fails, drop shot a live leech or minnow. In July and August bass will scatter and use the broken rock shorelines to target crawfish. They can also be found in tapering points leading to deep water and nearby humps where crawdad cranks, shad raps, jigs with grubs or crawdads, drop shotted finesse worms, and rattle traps will be effective. However, they will also move back into thick reed beds full of young perch and minnows. Here, weedless plastic presentations are the go-to. Once the water temperature starts to drop below 60F, bass will bunch up on 12-24’ basin humps in preparation for late fall and winter. This is some of the most overlooked big bass fishing of the season. Plastics on drop shots and jigs will catch fish but the best presentation for these heavy-feeding fish is a big live sucker of 3-5” on a 3/8 oz. lindy/Carolina rig or a 1/8-1/4 oz. Odd Ball jig.
These fish are typically schooled up in high numbers, are aggressive, and have an average size of 16-22”. They will remain in the same spots you found them in during the fall months through the winter and into spring, until the water warms above 45-55°F. So, if you arrive on a cold spring day and the bass aren’t shallow yet, just go to the fall spots and they will be there.