Mike Marsh Outdoors
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Piedmont Lakes Fishing Report: October-November 2019
What to expect when you head out to fish the lakes of the Piedmont over the next few weeks. Get a clue from noted outdoor writer Mike Marsh.
Yadkin/Pee Dee Reservoirs
High Rock Lake
Maynard Edwards (Yadkin Lakes Guide Service, Extreme Fishing Concepts, 336-249-6782) said stripers are slashing.
“In October, stripers bite on the main river,” he said. “The best way to catch them is by trolling live shad on two, three or four pairs of Fishing Extreme Plane Jane planer boards baited with live shad. You can also catch them by trolling Pet spoons and deep diving lures.”
Bass will be on the rocks and stumps at sunlit banks. Rat-L-Traps, Carolina rigs and spinnerbaits will get them going.
Crappie will be in the brush piles beneath docks. Flat Swamp creek is a good place to try long line trolling with jigs.
Blue and channel cats will bite cut shad anywhere anglers spot baitfish in the creeks. The best way to catch them is by slow trolling on the bottom with Santee sinker or slinky sinker rigs. Flatheads will bite in the deep river holes. The best way to catch them is on a Carolina rig with a 3-ounce no-roll sinker and a live white perch for bait.
Maynard Edwards (Yadkin Lakes Guide Service, Fishing Extreme Concepts, 336-249-6782) said grass beds hold bunches of bass.
“If you can find grass, bass will eat any buzzbait or floating worms you cast,” he said. “When the sun gets up, the fish head to the drop-offs, ledges and humps. When they are deep, I use Carolina rigs and deep diving crankbaits such as a Fat Free Shad or a Rapala DT6,10 and 14.”
Crappie will hit jigs and minnows trolled on long lines and tight lines.
Flathead catfish will bite live white perch and bream just outside Ryles Creek. Back in the creek, channel cats will hit cut baits and live shad.
Maynard Edwards (Yadkin Lakes Guide Service, Extreme Fishing Concepts, 336-249-6782) said Badin is a superior striper lake.
“The stripers are usually at Gar Creek in the area below the railroad trestle,” he said. “I catch them on a clear Zara Spook, Whopper Plopper, propeller bait or chugging lure.”
Bass strike the same topwater lures. However, if they are not hitting on top, casting a shaky head worm to the grass beds is a good tactic. The fish also hit floating worms cast around docks. When the bass head to deep points in the middle of the day, deep diving crankbaits, spoons and Carolina rigs are the best bets.
Badin has big crappie, but they are not as plentiful as in the other Yadkin lakes. In October, they move to shallow banks where casting a jig will get results. If they are showing deep on the depthfinder, trolling two-hook down lines rigged with jigs or minnows should do the trick.
Blue and channel catfish will be on the flats, where anglers trolling shad or cut perch on Fishing Extreme Plane Jane planer boards will catch them.
Rodney Crisco (Joe’s Bait & Tackle, 704-982-8716) said bass would be on the move.
“Bass will be in the creeks,” he said. “Look for the bait moving into the creeks on the primary and secondary points and the bass chasing them. Alabama rigs with 3-inch Charlie Brewer Slider swimbaits are the best way to catch them. Smaller topwater lures also work well, with a clear Super Spook Jr. with a feather trailer or a Tiny Torpedo good bets. You can also try a Rat-L-Trap or any jig in a crawfish color on the points and hard structure.”
Stripers will hit best in early evening. The best way to catch them is by trolling live gizzard shad or blueback herring on 3/0 Octopus hooks. He trolls a pair of down lines at the front of the boat, a pair of Pro-Motion planer boards out to the sides with 50 to 60 feet of line, and two flat lines with split shot rigs off the stern. The best speed is 1.0 to 1.5 mph.
For anglers who prefer trolling with lures, a No. 7 Shad Rap, Smithwick Deep Rattlin’ Rogue or Cordell Redfin is hard to beat. When trolling with lead core line, a Preacher Jig bucktail with tinsel-and-feather dressing is bet. Another one is a Roadrunner head with a Sexy Shad, chartreuse-and-white or blue-and-white dressing and a 7-inch white Striper Sniper worm trailer.
White perch will bite Joe’s Waccamaw Rigs, cut bait and minnows. The fish will move to the bottom when the water cools.
Crappie will follow baitfish into the creeks. Most anglers score by slow trolling Kalin’s jigs, with Acid Rain a good color in dark water and Tennessee Shad the best choice in clear water. Tipping a jig with a minnow increases strikes. When the water turns colder, fish move to brush piles at 15 to 20 feet where vertical jigging will catch them.
Blue catfish will eat live and cut white perch and shad trolled on Pro-Motion planer boards and down lines.
Bait & Techniques:
Seasonal Fishing Features: