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March 2013 Lake Map Challenge


3:25 pm
March 15, 2013



posts 221


Post edited 3:50 pm – March 15, 2013 by admin


In the spirit of trying something new and practicing the "learning club" concept that we preach, this will be the first installation of our "Lake Map Challenge".   I'm going to provide a map of an un-named lake (ala the "Day On The Lake" challenge).  Your challenge is to read the information provided, and based on how much or little you know, describe how you would approach this body of water for the first time.  Some challenges will go as far as giving you exact weather conditions and time as year.  Some will be purposely vague. The goal is an open discussion that forces us to think and strategize, and expose you to different thought processes.  Hopefully this will promote better critical thinking and make us all better anglers who are not reliant on "spots" and specific pattens we like to fish.  If anyone wants to submit a lake to the challenge and can provide me a "blacked out" map of the lake (so it remains a secret), please email me.   Happy strategizing!


The Lake

Full Map Here

Our first lake is a northern US natural lake.  Coming in at just over 1,000 acres, this lake has extremely high visibility from ultra clear spring and creek water. I'm talking 25 feet down visibility, like Lake Michigan.  Primary bottom structure is sand, rock and gravel, with some mud and muck located at the inlet and outlet creeks on either side of the lake.  Millfoil clumps spot the lake in emergent and submergent bunches.  Make no mistake, this is a smallie lake through and through.  Largemouth are there, and they're big, but they're much more sparse than their smaller lipped brethren. There's a myriad of forage options, but your offerings better look natural.  Let us know what your spring time approach would be!

Fish present:

  • Largemouth
  • Smallmouth (abundant)
  • Perch (abundant)
  • Pike
  • Muskie
  • Rock Bass (abundant)
  • Redear and Greenear Sunfish (abundant)
  • Suckers
  • Whitefish (abundant)
  • Walleye
  • Lake Trout


5:18 am
March 19, 2013




posts 84


Ok, I'm in!!!

Lets Start with the smallies, The lake should be thawed by now and the water temp on the rise. The Smallie are gonna want to eat before they fully set in to spawn. I'd look for a rocky flat near a deep water get away close to a spawning flat in the 8 to 12 foot range on the north side of the lake where the warm southern winds are hitting the bank. Early morning when the sun is just moving over head, I'd pick up a spinning rod with no more than a  8 lbs Fluorocarbon leader tied to 15 lbs spiderwire and a 1/16oz tube jig covered up with a green pumpkin tube. Before throwing the tube I'd make a hand full of cast with a suspending jerk bait to try an wake em up a bit. then pick up the tube and slow drag it along the bottom and wait for the smallest little thug.


The Large mouth, they are going to be looking for warmer water and food (bait fish), in the back of cuts  Near a point with deeper water close by, Like the mid lake curve and point on the left side. I'd Start out on the point and throw a suspending jerk bait first and see if there out deeper waiting to move up when that sun fully hits the shallow waters. If no takers, pick up a jig and get it on the bottom and slow crawl it back looking for that one fish to give up their location, Work the water column deep to shallow. In the deeper water they most likely will be suspending as they move shallow to feed they should get more aggressive in eating, But keep it slow there still cold. YellWink

Big Joey b
Following someone doesn't mean they know were the Fish are!!
Find em Your Self!!

8:44 am
March 21, 2013

Ralph Sweat


posts 158


Well i will study my map and look for the warmer water where ther might be some vegitation under the surface ..then u know me iam going to buzz that shore line or point for those largemouth type … if i find a windy point now ill crank it  or spinner bait it . now for the smallie well of course like joe ill look for the rocky section windy point or shore line i like chigger craws rather than tubes on small lake .green pumkin ,and if they hit that ,then i will wacky worm those guys also . and if i cant get a bite THEN ILL ASK BOBBY V. HEY WHAT DID YOU CATCH EM ON !   AND SO ALL REMEMBER WHAT SANTA BROUGHT YOU FOR  CHRISTMAS AT THE MAPLE PARTY .   LOOKS LIKE FISHING IS GOING TO BE TUFF BECAUSE OF ALL THE NICE THINGS SANTA  PASSED OUT ..PS DOES ANYBODY KNOW WHERE  JIM OMALLEY  WENT   LOL  HAVE A GREAT SEASON TO ALL  AND TO ALL A 7LB LARGEMOUTH   ..SANTA  Wink

9:38 pm
March 23, 2013



posts 33


Assuming no practice day to look around I see three spots where I would choose to start. I would fish the first 6 hours for smallmouth and save the last two hours for a Kicker largemouth to complete my limit. I would study the day time and night time air temp for the past week in the area. As soon as I launched my boat I would take the water temp and then proceed to my first spot. If I'm the 1st boat out, I would put it on plane and go to the Northwest corner of the lake until I hit the three foot range. I would idle up the river/creek as far as I could looking at the shore, the current, rocks,  wood etc. I would primarily throw a small green pumpkin jig with a speed craw trailer. But I would start with a purple or white Dan Gapen Ugly Bug. When the water temp is warmer than the air temp, I would crawl the bug with current until I got a smallmouth pickup. If the water is a lot colder than the air I would dead stick a bit especially if I could find some creek turns, docks or other current breaks. If I found the area promising I would stay two hours. If I found the area not attractive, I would leave as soon as  possible.

Next I would try the southwest tuck and look for shallow water that looked fishy. I don't really like this spot on the map as much as I want to but I would take a look just so I wasn't kicking myself on the drive home. In both of these first two spots I would throw a huge Colorado or Kansas bladed spinner bait ( black or white) along wood for large mouth. Just a few casts though.

If I don't have what I'm looking for by the third hour. I would go back to the North shoreline with the deep breaks. HOUR 3 THROUGH 6 I'M CONCENTRATING ON SMALLIES. I don't see the humps that I'm looking for on the map, but I would look for them on my locator. I'd throw that Ugly bug spinner all along the North shore. I'd throw a 6-8 foot running Citris Shad crank and if there were some small points I'd follow up with an American shad 3 inch Pointer jerkbait. In addition to the smallmouth jig I'd add a 4 inch green pumpkin Lake Fork baby ring. If I find rock piles like Lake Geneva or Lake Winnebago I am swimming an IGS green pumpkin salt garlic tube on 3/16 to 1/2 ounce swim jigs and/ or round heads. If I find sand and I can see the smallies spawning, game over. I'll let my tube rot in a big bed until she picks it up. If I'M on huge bedding smallies, game over. I'll abandon my largemouth plan for the end of the day and just fish in the best  largemouth spot near the ramp for the last 15 minutes.


The last two hours of the tournament will probably be the warmest and brightest part of the day  when I concentrate on Large mouth.  I''ll switch my spinnerbait to a double willow chartreuse/ white or white tranlucent skirt with trailer hook if it's windy or really clear and they're takin'. If it's slow I'll alternate between Junebug and green Pumpkin ring worms on 1/8 to 3/16 ounce jig head. I'll be in the Northeast corner of the lake but Ralph won't find me because Santa brought me a disguise. Just look for me right on the shore in shallow water. bluebass

2:04 pm
March 25, 2013

Leo Doyle



practicing for new topic

7:34 am
March 27, 2013

Leo Doyle



the first thihg I would want to know is which way the wind was blowing for the last coupel of days, this is where the warm water will be, if the wind was less than 10 miles per hr. I wouldn't consider it, because this a really clear midwest lake, I would think that the forage base is mostly crawfish, bluegill, and minnows, I don't think shad would be a factor. my lure colors would be crawfish and bluegill in color. the lures that I would use would be a suspending jerk bait a floating jerk bait,a rattle trap, a shad rap, a square bill crand bait, a tube and 2 colored swim jigs, I would start on that point on the north east side, because it has a fast drop I would fish right on the shore out to about 10ft. I would fish it around to the north to that little bay I like this bay because it is suronded by deep water. The next thing I would do is go right acrost to the south west and statr on that point I woul fish it around to the next point and that inlet which may have a little color to the water.  I like this area of the lake because it is necked down and has a lot of structor.  If none of these things worked I would get on a plain to Florida and find a lake with a lot of pears. I would fish ondly those pears that had pretty girls with big boobs and tiny bikins

8:42 am
April 1, 2013

Mike U


posts 201


I would make sure Jack could not fish with Leo and I would be his co-angler……BoobsLaugh

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