In-Fisherman TV – Catching suspended bass on an umbrella rig

Lake Fork Umbrella Rig – Catching Two at a Time!!!


This time of year can be a blast. When you find the fish bunched up and feeding on big balls of shad, there’s no better technique for catching bass than an umbrella rig.

Underwater shot of my Strike King Umbrella rig in action

Lake Fork Fishing Report | May 4, 2014

May is here, and the fishing on Lake Fork is nothing short of fantastic. My clients have caught a lot of big fish the past few weeks with several fish over 9 pounds (including one that weighed in at 12.31 pounds), and more 7+ pound fish than I can count. Our big fish have come on a variety of baits including a Santone Piglet Shaky head, an umbrella rig, a swimbait, a Santone Swim Jig, an LFT Magic Shad, and a Strike King Sexy Dawg topwater.

This is the time of year that you can fish with just about anything you like to fish with and get bit. There are tons of fish in less than 6 feet of water right now. Some are still on spawning beds, others are making there way in to spawn, and others have spawned and have started feeding back up. Water temps are in the upper 60s and lower 70s as of this writing. Water level is at 399.36 or 3.64 ft below full pool. A year ago today, we were 4.53 ft below full pool.

If you like to fish topwaters, May is about as good as it gets. Topwater poppers like the LFT Magic Popper or the Strike King HC KVD Splash Popper will catch fish off the nest, but it is especially effective at catching those fish that are guarding fry. You can throw them all day under any conditions right now and catch fish. For those fish that are chasing shad, it’s hard to beat a Strike King Sexy Dawg. I have thrown just about every walking topwater bait you can name, and the Sexy Dawg ranks right up there with the best. It is very easy to walk and it gets some of the most vicious strikes you have ever seen.

If dragging plastics is your thing, a Carolina rigged LFT Magic shad in Green Pumpkin will get you bit when fished around main lake and secondary points. You can catch them super shallow, and now you can catch some deep too. A drop shot is also a good choice in the 6-14′ range. We have caught some really nice fish on both of these techniques over the past couple of weeks.

The deep bite is starting to shape up, and June, July, and August look to be really good again this year. If you have ever wanted to catch fish in deep water, these are great months to do it. I am booking summer trips right now, so if you’d like to get a date(s) on the books, please shoot me an email and we will get you set up.

For those of you who would like to see daily pics and get a little more info, you can “Like” my Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/lakeforkguides. I try to post 4 or 5 nights per week, so you can keep up a little easier with how the lake is fishing on a daily basis.

Here are a few pics from the past couple of weeks!!!

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December 22, 2012 – Lake Fork Fishing Report

The year is coming to a close, so I guess this will be my last Lake Fork fishing report of 2012!!! The fishing on Lake Fork has fallen off a bit from earlier in the month, but the bite is still very good for this late in the year. Water temperatures are still sitting in the 55-56 degree range on the main lake, and Lake Fork’s water level is 398.37 ft or 4.63 feet below full pool.

I am still catching the majority of my fish in deep water, although I have started to sneak up into some shallower water to pitch 1/2 and 3/4 oz Santone jigs along the creek channels. As the water temps fall, I will start spend more time with a jig in my hand. You don’t normally get a lot of bites with a jig this time of year, but you can certainly catch the fish of a lifetime. A good day numbers wise will be about 8-10 fish, maybe 15 on a really good day. Most of the time, I’m trailing my jig with a Lake Fork Trophy Lures Hyper Freak. Many times, you will catch several fish in a short stretch, and then fish a little while before you get another bite. Be patient!!!

As of late this week, I’ve still been spending the majority of my time in deep water (22-35 ft) with a Santone Slamma rig (umbrella rig) in my hand. The Slamma rig holds up VERY well, and it works great when paired the new LFT Lures Boot Tail Live Magic Shad. In addtion some really nice largemouth, you will catch a TON of 2-3 pound white bass. Some of my clients call these “bonus fish”. They pull super hard and are a lot of fun to catch in between largemouths. The same areas continue to hold fish – points, ridges, road beds, and creek mouths will all have large schools of fish from time to time. A good graph is essential to locating these schools.

We have another major cold front coming in on Christmas day, and our highs are supposed to be 43 and 37 degrees on Tuesday and Wednesday respectively. This one could slow the deep bite down some on Lake Fork, but it will make the bite at the local power plant lakes (Monticello and Welsh) even better. I’ve been to Lake Welsh a couple of times already this fall, and the fishing has been very good. I should be making a trip to Lake Monticello very soon as well.

If you’d like to book a trip on Lake Fork or one of these power plant lakes, please call, email, or text me. We can run split days (power plant /Lake Fork) if you’d like. Also, my spring is really filling up quickly. If you’d like to get in on some of Lake Fork’s spring fishing, you might want to get with me soon on a date.

Thanks to all of you who have fished with me in 2012!!! I’m looking to a great 2013!!! Merry Christmas!!!

Marc Lake Fork December 2012

Joe Lake Fork December 2012

Jason Lake Fork December 2012

Keith Lake Fork December 2012

Santone Jig December 2012

Lake Fork Fishing Report – December 5, 2012

Not much has changed here on Lake Fork in the last month – the bite is still pretty darn good. Lake level is 398.52, or 4.48 ft below full pool, and water temps are sitting around 61-63 degrees. That will change with the big cold front that is coming in on Monday, so it will be interesting to see what that does to the bite next week. I’m not convinced that it will hurt the deep bite too much.

I know there are some shallow fish that can be caught flipping jig to big timber around the creek channels, but I am spending all of my time fishing the deep fish. Luckily, I’ve been off on the days where the wind has blown 25-30 mph!!!

I’m still throwing the same baits in (many of) the same places as last month. Points, road beds, deep channel swings, and humps are all holding fish. The road beds on the north end are in the 16-18 ft range, while the points on the south end will hold fish as deep as 30-31 ft. Use your electronics to cover water and look for the schools of fish. You will find the bass mixed in with the BIG white bass on many of these spots.

Flutter spoons from Lake Fork Trophy Lures, jigging spoons, tail spinners, and a Santone Slamma rig (umbrella rig/Alabama rig) will all catch fish of all species. The Santone Slamma rig is my personal favorite. The strikes are vicious, and it’s not uncommon to catch more than one fish (bass and/or big white bass) at a time!!!

I still have some open dates this month if you’d like to come out to Lake Fork and get in on some of this action. I also made a trip to Lake Welsh last week and we boated 34 largemouth bass in 4 hours of fishing. I run trips on Lake Welsh and Lake Monticello in the winter months, and it’s a lot of fun to catch these hard fighting power plant lake fish!!!

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Lake Fork Fishing Report – November 7, 2012

The fall big bite on Lake Fork seems to be taking shape. Huge schools of shad and yellow bass are starting to load up on road beds, humps, and points, and when that happens, you know Lake Fork’s giant bass are too far behind. This makes November one of my favorite months to fish Lake Fork.

We are fortunate that Lake Fork has plenty of deep structure for these fish load up on. Some days, the best depth will be 16-18 feet of water, while other days, I will find them as deep as 31 feet. Having good electronics and learning how to read them will make your job of finding fish a lot easier.

Once I locate a school, we are typically throwing three different baits – a Lake Fork Trophy Lures Flutter Spoon, a 1 oz jigging spoon (various brands), and a tail spinner (various brands). We will throw all three at each stop, but you will find that one of those baits will outperform the others on a given day. If I see lots of bass suspended, I will also throw a Santone Lures Slamma Rig. Talk about a good time, it doesn’t get much better than catching big bass on a Slamma Rig.

In addition to catching big largemouth bass, we are also catching good numbers of yellow bass and white bass. Our yellow bass population has exploded this year, and that is a good sign. These fish are the perfect sized forage for big bass. I haven’t been catching as many large white bass this year as I have the last two years, but I’m hearing of some big white bass being caught here and there. They are lots of fun to catch, but we would like to see their population reduced as they are direct competitors for our largemouth.

Lake Fork’s water temperature is ranging from 66-68 degrees, and water clarity is very good at about 2-3 feet. The lake level is 398.83 or 4.17 feet below full pool.

Lake Fork guide Jason Hoffman November 2012

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June 29, 2012

Here’s 11 year old Evan with his new personal best of 7.63 lbs that was caught with me this morning. You should see the hook set this young guy has!!! He caught a 4.25 pounder to go with her, and both fish came on a Carolina rigged Hyperstick.

His brother Ryan got into the act as well on a Carolina rig and added a couple more on the Slamma Rig. We caught our fish in 21-24 ft of water today.

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June 24, 2012

Like has been the case for much of 2012, this past week has had its ups and downs. We started off the week with 19 in a full day, and had two half days with 19 each. We also had another full day with 10, and an extended half day with 9.

We did catch some good fish this week including an 8.56 caught by young Jake Evans in a Carolina rigged LFT Hyperstick. This bait and a LFT Baby Ring Fry accounted for most of our fish this week, but a Santone Slamma Rig added a lot of excitement to our trips.

If you haven’t thrown the Slamma rig yet, I highly suggest you try it. We all know that Santone builds quality lures and this rig is no different. I have caught over 20 fish on one rig including 3 bass on one cast on Wednesday and at least one double everyday. The wires have been bent every which way you can imagine, and I just keep bending them back into place. I keep thinking one of the wires is going to break on me, but it has shown incredible durability.

Here are a few fish from this past week:

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