Lake Toho and Orlando Bass Fishing Report
Today we had a 4 hour run out on Lake Toho. Water temperature started out at a cool 72 degrees to start the day, and finished the day at 72. Finally cooler consistent water temps to help get the bass active and feeding up. This trip was part of a 10 boat deal and everyone had high hopes the winds would hold off till we were finished up. We started out with a quick run to the mid lake area working isolated hydrilla patches in deeper water and after 20 minutes and no activity we made the move back to the northern end of Lake Toho. This was the move that made the day.
Positioned in a cut with a good breeze coming thru, bait fish were being pushed down the cut and along the grass edges, and yes, this caused the bass to school up good. We had one small school move in on us and roughly an hour later another good sized school followed right behind in the same path. Although even with the schooling activity the numbers were not high like we had hoped, with 7 bass making it to the boat and a few others missed, but the action was steady. Bass were feeding, but they were mouthing the baits, so the bite was not very aggressive as we had grown used to.
Word at the ramp at the end of the day was everyone boated about the same amount of bass, numbers were 5 to 11 bass per boat which made for a great day on the water for the entire group, all of which said they had a great day on the water. Winds did hold off pretty much most of the time, and started to pick up as the trip ended. Big bass of the trip came in at just over 5 pounds, with our big one coming in at 4.2 pounds. All the bass caught were very healthy and of course released alive after pictures, for you, the next angler to enjoy catching them.
Today I was out on Johns Lake for a few hours. It has been awhile since I had been out here as the fishing had really dropped off with the high water temperatures.
Today the waters were perfect, starting the day out right at 70 degrees and when I pulled off the lake 4 hours later, the temps had barely made a move. The day had started out in the cut to the Horseshoe, with no real signs of any schooling action.
I had started chunking a spinner bait, and as I would retrieve it, I could feel the line drop off as it would get smacked but no hook ups, even with the trailer hook. I made a quick switch to the Mepps Mino and that was the ticket for the rest of the day.
Picking up 5 real quick bass in the first half hour I knew it was going to be a good day out there. I sat the Mepps down and tossed a 10 inch worm, Black with red flake for a few to try to get some deep water action in the cut, with only one serious bump which hooked up, a nice 4 pounder and that was it.
Switching back to the Mepps and moving around the lake, working scattered grass beds and shallow waters, the Mepps Mino was the definite ticket as the total for the day was 16 bass to the boat, 3 more that shook off and of course the typical pickerel.
With the cooler water temperatures finally here, the action has definitely improved greatly. There was minimal schooling activity in scattered areas of the lake from the Horseshoe area to the cut going into Clear Lake, I did see two smaller schools in the main lake area and noticed in increase in size in bait fish pods.
With 2 days on Johns Lake this week, we had 2 different scenarios. Day one was a day of chasing bass flipping the grass beds catching one here and one there. Day 2, Saturday the 18th, had bass schooling up in the Horseshoe catching a few before the action died off. From there a quick move to Dear Island cut saw yet even more schooling action, with once again a few being caught. Baits of choice today were rattle traps and white spinner baits, the Mepps Mino which had been the hot go to bait as of late, saw no action at all.
Bass of size are still a little off as the numbers are up, most bass have been running in 1 ½ to 3 pound range and the bite has been aggressive, even when not working the two main cuts, bass were being caught more in the open waters. Crappie bite seems to be doing good also, as we were working a grass bed area over, we noticed a boat in mid lake catching crappie left and right, last count before we pulled away they had boated 13 crappie in roughly 20 minutes.
Water Temperatures started the day out at 67 degrees and when we pulled off the temp was running 69.8 degrees. Cooler waters have turned the bass on and heated up the schooling action as of late. Cooler temps predicted for all of next week, will only help to turn the fishing on and get them schooling up even more.
This week we also spent two days out on Butler Chain, Thursday and Friday. The run did on Thursday started with us on the water at 11:30, after the storms had rolled thru and safely passed by us. Action was scattered across several lakes and most bass were caught on Rattle Traps worked thru eel grasses. Fridays action was more of the same, a lot of moving around and tossing rattle traps, we did have a few caught on the Gitem Shad working tight to cover. We had also taken some minnows with us and did a few drift patterns across the lakes to get an idea of what the Crappie fishing was like, picking up 12 good crappie.
This past week has been a week of tough bass fishing. With the major cold snap taking its toll on the bite the first part of the week, and the high winds at mid week, fishing SLOW was key to catching bass. Schooling activity on Johns Lake was “ok” at best, with bass feeding up and disappearing just as fast as they surfaced. Rattle Traps did catch a few here and there along with smaller swim baits worked slowly and deep as well as Carolina rigged Gitem Shads.
Swim baits and Carolina rigged baits worked best in the cuts and around any kind of drop off, most notably with at least a 2 foot drop off. Bass had been a little more scattered than in weeks past so patience was key to catching them. Rattle Traps as usual produced the numbers, covering a lot of water, working the cuts, drop offs and along as well as thru scattered grass beds.
Gitem KO’s and Gitem Shads had produced some good bass pitched into grass beds and dead sticking in the potholes of the grass beds. Bite has been light so line watching was very important. Top producing colors had been, Rattle Traps in Black/Chrome, Gitem Shad in white, swim baits pearl color and the Gitem KO in Baby Bass color.
Today we ended the week, Sunday the 26th with Mike Sr. and Mike Jr. out on the lake, Mike Sr. celebrating his 36 anniversary and his With Jackie surprising him with a trip bass fishing, and Mike Jr. sneaking into town without his dad knowing this morning.
Day started out with great promise as the guys got a quick double hook up, from there it ended up being fish scattered here and there and winds kicking 10 to 20 most of the day made the bite even harder. In all it was a great day on the water with two great guys, Mike Sr., retired US Navy/ US Coast Guard, and Mike Jr. still proudly serving in the US Army.