If the weather report holds true heading into this weekend, we should see some great fishing on the Juniata River and other rivers around the state. Clear stable water has really helped the fishing. I was out this past weekend on a two day camping/fishing trip and the smallmouth bass were eager to hit our baits…as long as we were throwing the right stuff. Low clear water means finesse fishing!
Here are my prediction for this coming weekend:
Look for fish to be actively roaming and feeding since we are heading into the fall. The fish will be in shallow water most of the day unless intense sun drives them into deeper current breaks or into cover. Low clear water means finesse fishing. I’d look at baits that mimic small crayfish or minnows/baitfish. Focus on baits that are in the 3-5 inch range since this is the size of many of the baitfish the smallies are feeding on this time of year. Natrual colors will likely work best in clear water. Some of my top pics would be:
- 3-5 inch stick worms (senko style baits)
- 3-4 inch Soft jearkbaits ( Slug-go or fines-fish style baits)
- Sweet Beaver style baits
Fish these baits with no weight or on a split shot rig depending on water depth and current. “Nose hooking” or “wacky rigging” these baits will probably produce the best results.
Since we are nearing fall don’t forget to check for a top water bite in the early morning. River smallmouth this time of year tend to start schooling up in packs of 5-10 fish. They are typically very aggressive when schooled up like this and will compete for food. Top wate baits can be the ticket for creating some tackle jarring strikes this time of year. My top water bait pics would be the following:
- Pop-r style baits
- Tiny Topedo, Heddon
Good luck this weekend and please feel free to leave comments if you try some of the baits I’ve listed within the next couple of weeks. I’d like to know how you do!