Tis the season for freshwater stripers Dec 13, 2019 19:38:52 GMT
Post by Ghost Comanche©® on Dec 13, 2019 19:38:52 GMT
Tis the season for freshwater stripers
by the Roanoke Times
This is the time of year freshwater striped bass fishing to take off.
Leading the way in catches recently has been 9,600-acre Lake Anna, where fish up to 25 inches are being taken by anglers stalking school that are feeding on or near the surface.
Mike Brennan described the action this way:
“It’s got to be the best freshwater fishing ever. If you come upon a good break and they stay up for awhile, you’ll go crazy.”
Lesser numbers of stripers are being caught at Kerr Lake.
Smith Mountain Lake is producing the largest stripers. The Striper Mafa Winter Open Saturday turned up a fish that measured 38 inches. Of the 45 teams participating, (120 fishermen) 33 entered fish on a cold, windy day.
The winning team, composed of Keith Mattson, B.J. Babb and Eric Gerner, registered a two-fish limit that measured a combined total of 73.75 inches. Team member Mattson, of Moneta, entered a 37.50-inch fish that won heaviest catch in the youth category. It helped secure the first place finish for his Topwater Rushers team. The catch was worth $1,900 in prize money.
“Slow trolling live gizzard shad both in the main-lake creeks and along main-channel points was the preferred technique of most anglers,” tournament director Mark Ward said.
Small shad produced the most catches, Ward observed, while large shad brought bigger fish to the boat.
Striped bass fishing has been challenging recently at Smith Mountain, according to veteran guide Dale Wilson. But that likely will change with colder temperatures. Wilson offers the following tips:
Fish shallow points just before and after dark.
Look for areas that contain large concentrations of baitfish.
The best times to fish are early morning, late afternoon and on cloudy days.
Stripers will be concentrated in the upper sections of the lake and in the large creeks.
Stripers constantly will be on the move. A good way to keep up with them is to watch the seagulls which follow the fish.
While surface fishing provides first-rate action, most fish will be caught at 20 to 60-foot depths.
Best lures are swimbaits, top-water poppers, spoons and Zoom Flukes on 3/8 to ¾ ounce ledheads.
Live bait fished on down lines and planners boards also work in December.