John's Journal...

Limiting Out On Linesides

Hunting Island Whites

Editor’s Note: Catching white Click to enlargebass is relatively simple because the fish are extremely aggressive – eating many types of smaller fish, including perch, bluegills, crappie and gizzard shad besides feeding on insects and crustaceans – and will hit a wide variety of baits. The biggest problem involved in catching white bass is finding the fish so anglers have a target for their casting. Since populations of white bass fluctuate from year to year because of the fragility of the eggs and the requirement of nearly-perfect weather conditions for hatching, the fishing is hot and cold. Although the white bass can be harvested heavily without harming the fishery, the fish successfully reproduce Click to enlargeonly every three to four years in most areas.

Hunting island whites requires expertise and equipment. In some parts of the country, fishermen load their boats with linesides in the middles of lakes or rivers. There will be no gulls to point the way and no current to bet on or fish thrashing on the surface. But what these outdoorsmen know is that there is a sunken island or ridge coming up from the bottom where the white bass are schooling. Trolling back and forth across one of these submerged honey holes will help the angler locate and pinpoint the schools of white bass. The best technique to catch these fish is Click to enlargeto buoy off the area where the stripes are being caught by trolling. Then cast to the fish with tailspinners like the Little George, jigs or small deep-diving crankbaits such as the Deep Wee R and the Model A Bomber. When the fish fail to strike, then begin to troll again, locate and mark the school, and resume fishing.

During the early spring, white bass oftentimes will try to move up creeks and branches to spawn. Trolling theses creeks or angling for surfClick to enlargeacing fish can be very productive at this time of the year. However, when anglers can no longer find the fish close to the surface, they may assume that the bass have left the region, which may or may not be the case. Sometimes the white bass will be lying close to the bottom at the heads of the creeks. They will no longer be thrashing the surface but will be staying close to the bottom. There are two ways to know for sure that the fish are there. You can cast blindly all over the creek and bottom hop your lures. Or, you can rely on your depth finder to show the fish’s exact location along the bottom. Most white bassers prefer the later system. The depth finder is one of the most-useful, overlooked tools that can be utilized by the white bass angler. The depth finder can not only show the fishermen bottom huggers but also the white bass in open water when they may be suspended at 20- to 30 feet with a bottom at 60- to 70 feet.


Check back each day this week for more about deer hunting after the season

Day 1: Finding White Bass
Day 2: Catching White Bass
Day 3: Finding and Taking Linesides
Day 4: Hunting Island Whites
Day 5: Night Bass Fishing



Entry 341, Day 4