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New Feature: Lake of the Week, Sep. 5th, Bass Lake

Discussion in 'Indiana Fishing Reports' started by SC Mike, Sep 5, 2006.

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    Bass Lake, Starke County

    Nearest town: Knox
    Surface area: 1,345 acres

    Maximum depth: 30 feet
    Average depth: 3.5 feet
    Secchi disc: 2.0 feet

    Shoreline demographics: 90% developed; 10% wetland
    Shoreline fishing: Good
    Accessibility: State-owned public access, with limited parking, on southwest shore; shore-fishing at State Park
    Motors: Inboard / outboard motors allowed
    Accommodations: Park, camping, picnicking
    Park office: Tippecanoe River State Park, 4200N US 35, Winamac, IN 46996; (574) 946-3213

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    FISHING INFORMATION: Bass Lake, Indiana’s third largest
    natural lake, is home to good numbers of crappie, walleye and
    channel catfish. Crappie, in particular, are highly sought-after fish
    with good numbers of keepers and individuals up to 14 inches.
    White bass are a secondary species. Small numbers of largemouth
    bass and bluegill are present. Primary forage fish are quillback,
    minnows and young perch.

    Growth rates for most species are average. In an 18-year study,
    it was found that the average length for walleye ages one through
    five were 6.6 inches, 11.3 inches, 14.1 inches, 16.7 inches, and
    19.0 inches. Walleye anglers are subject to a 14-inch minimum
    length on walleyes. A 2000 creel survey indicated that the best
    months to fish for walleye are April and May, while the best months
    to fish for crappie are October and May, and most catfish are
    caught from May through July. Large shallow flats suffer from
    intense summer boat traffic that limits productivity and increases
    water turbidity.

    Bass has all the right ingredients to make it an excellent crappie
    lake. While crappie populations tend to cycle up and down,
    Bass Lake is more consistent than most. Many crappie are caught
    on summer nights fishing below a floating light, and many are
    caught in the fall when crappie suspend in deep water.

    Walleye and catfish come out of the depths and cruise shallows
    at night looking for an easy meal. Shallow flats near deeper
    water are great locations for nighttime walleye fishing. Because
    of the large areas of shallow water, this is one of the earliest
    lakes in the area to warm in spring, providing action soon after
    ice-out.

    The expansive flat covering most of the south end of the lake
    (SPOT 1) is a good crappie area. Crappie congregate in
    spring, hugging up against available cover. Fish weeds with a
    jig tipped with a small minnow suspended from 10-20 inches
    below a bobber. Keep moving and pitch to weeds or drift until
    you find a concentration of fish; then stop and cover the area
    more thoroughly.

    (SPOT 2) is one of those shallow flats near deep water
    where walleye forage at night. Cast a jig and minnow or twitch
    a Rapala or Rattlin’ Rogue. The north side of the point at
    (SPOT 3) spills off into deeper water with some large rock
    that attracts walleye. A bottom bouncer and spinner with a
    nightcrawler is a good choice day or night. You’ll catch catfish
    here, too.

    Cranberry Point and the adjacent hump (SPOT 4) is a
    classic walleye spot, and it’s especially good when wind is
    blowing from the north. A Lindy rig and minnow or crawler is a
    good choice for a search technique. When you find a pod of fish,
    grab a jig and hover over the fish with a jig and minnow; fish it
    with a vertical presentation.

    The flat and steep drop-off at (SPOT 5) provides action
    for walleye, white bass and catfish. Catfish and walleye cruise
    shallows at night, and walleye will be found on the drop-off
    during the day. White bass school in this area and calm summer
    days can provide good surface action. There is shore fishing
    access along the State Park here, and some catfish can be
    caught at night fishing from shore.

    The shoreline in (SPOT 6) is crappie spawning
    habitat and you’ll find them here from April through May.
    (SPOT 7) is a deep hole that’s one of the most
    consistent ice-fishing spots on the lake. Look for suspended
    crappie in winter. While (SPOT 6) is a prime location for
    spawning crappie, it’s also a solid transitional location, too.
    As they complete the spawn, they’ll drop back into deeper water.
    Look for crappie to hold somewhere between (SPOT 6)
    and (SPOT 7). Larger crappie can be difficult to catch once
    they move deep, but they can be coaxed into biting. Many
    anglers don’t have the option of fishing at night, so deep-water
    action is the way to go. Use a slip bobber to get your minnow,
    leech, or waxworm down to them. The advantage of a slip bobber
    is the ability to adjust to the depth after you’ve located fish using
    a depth finder.

    Walleye fishing fans need to break out planer boards and
    start trolling. Although the night bite is usually the way to go
    during the heat of summer or later in fall, there are many
    walleye available to catch in daylight hours. After the fish are
    done spawning, look for them suspended over deep water.
    Use your depth finder to locate fish and then set your planer
    boards out. Use either a spinner rig with a crawler or crankbaits
    like a Shad Rap, Grappler Shad or Dave’s Shiner. Any of these
    offerings will work—just keep an eye on the depths you catch
    your fish and try to stay in similar depths. Also, if there is a lot of
    traffic while you’re out, planer boards can get pretty tricky to use.
    Consider trolling out the back of your boat as a reasonable
    back-up plan.

    Sportsman's Connection is a leading publisher of lake maps and fishing
    information, covering 12 states and over 4,700 lakes
    with
    more on the way. Two newly revised Indiana books, lake
    map downloads, lake map software are available at
    www.scmaps.com
     
  2. Thanks for the great map resource!:)
     

  3. ccavacini

    ccavacini Super Mod Mod

    Neat, thanks for posting...I'll try to get a map of Lake George...one with the little fishys on it so I know where to fish.