Bass Fishing, Crappie Fishing, Lake of the Ozarks
Photo Gallery
E-mail us your photos and we will post the best of the best
Expert Articles By John Neporadny Jr.
Monthly articles with detailed fishing tips and information.
Missouri Dept. of Conservation Reports
Click to jump to statewide fishing reports.
Lake Sun Reader
Online Outdoors Report with Detailed Fishing Info
State-Wide Fishing Tournaments
Listed as Regattas - But Pick Your Lake and Find All Scheduled Tournaments

THE Lake of the Ozarks Fishing GuideExpert Articles by John Neporadny Jr. - October 2015

Bluffing For Big Bass at Lake of the Ozarks

By John Neporadny Jr.

Bluffs and docks could be a winning combination for Lake of the Ozarks anglers this autumn.

“I would start in the morning and hit as many bluff end docks as I could because those big fish will come up and suspend under those docks in the fall,” says James Dill of James Dill Guide Service and owner of Crock-O-Gator Bait Company. “I have caught a lot of big fish on an isolated dock that other people just blow by.”

Quality bass that usually hang along the bluff drops during the summer start suspending when the shad move to the surface in the fall. The bass suspend under the bluff-end docks sitting over depths of more than 50 feet and use the boathouses as ambush points to pick off shad. Dill notes this pattern works best when the water temperature drops into the 70-degree range from mid-September to November.

The local guide tempts these suspending bass with a black 3/4-ounce Crock-O-Gator Headknocker Buzz Bait with a gold blade which he retrieves on 17-pound fluorocarbon line along the sides of the dock all the way to the front ends. “I wil start out reeling it pretty fast and then I will slow it down until I catch a couple,” says Dill. “You may hit a bunch of docks and not catch too many but sooner or later when you do catch a fish doing that it is going to be a good one.” Most of the strikes occur on the front corners of the docks although Dill occasionally catches some fish midway down the sides of the docks.

The bluff pattern works for Dill on the whole lake, but when he’s fishing the lower end he usually throws a Zara Spook on 14-pound monofilament around the docks in the clearer water. Dill advises any angler practicing for a tournament should run the lake and search a 15-mile stretch for isolated docks on the bluff ends. “See how many of those docks you can find in a certain area,” says Dill, who warns anglers to avoid fishing those docks during practice.

Another main lake pattern that produces quality fish for Dill in early October involves stair-stepping a jig down bluff shelves, a structure that big bass live on year-round. Dill opts for a 3/4-ounce Crock-O-Gator Reaction Jig or a 1-ounce football jig in dark colors (brown, green or black-and-blue) tipped with a bulky plastic trailer in the same color. He keys on shelves in the 15- to 18-foot depth range where he pops the jig off a shelf and lets it fall quickly to the next shelf. The local guide repeats the process until the lure drops off into the channel.

Dill likes to make a milk run of bluff docks before 10 a.m. and makes about five to eight casts per dock. Once the sun rises higher in the sky and starts casting shadows around the docks, Dill moves to the back of creeks and coves to target shallow docks. “If it is quiet and nobody has been back there you can catch big fish out of a foot of water,” says Dill.

The buzz bait still produces later in the day for Dill if he throws it to the shady areas of the docks. Then he likes to flip the buzzer into the wells where the lure’s buzzing sound echoes off the boat hoists. “It sends a whole different sound in there especially on those shallow docks,” reveals Dill. “When you flip all the way to the back and you bring that buzz bait and it is echoing through there, if there is a fish within 50 yards he is coming to eat that thing.”

Swimming a jig along the sides and in the wells of shallow docks also produces heavyweight bass for Dill in early October. Dill advises looking for bluegill keeping a safe distance from the docks. “If you are pitching those docks and there are bluegill that are 4 feet out looking into those dock corners there is a big fish there,” says Dill.

Bass can be found just about anywhere under a shallow dock, but the bigger fish tend to hide in hard-to-reach areas such as the walkways behind the dock cables and those small cracks in the flotation. “You have to hit those spots where nobody else has hit,” says Dill.

For information on lodging and other facilities at the Lake of the Ozarks or to receive a free vacation guide, call the Lake of the Ozarks Convention & Visitors Bureau at 1-800-FUN-LAKE or visit the Lake of the Ozarks Convention and Visitors Bureau web site at www.funlake.com.

Copies of John Neporadny's book, "THE Lake of the Ozarks Fishing Guide" are available by calling 573/365-4296 or visiting the web site www.jnoutdoors.com.

April 2007 Article      May 2007 Article   June 2007 Article   July 2007 Article   August 2007 Article   September 2007 Article   October 2007 Article   November 2007 Article   December 2007 Article   November 2013   March 2014   April 2014   May 2014   June 2014   July 2014   August 2014   September 2014   October 2014   November 2014   December 2014   January 2015   February 2015   March 2015   April 2015   May 2015   June 2015   July 2015   August 2015   September 2015   October 2015   November 2015   December 2015   January 2016   February 2016   March 2016   April 2016   May 2016   June 2016   July 2016   August 2016   October 2016   November 2016   February 2017   March 2017   April 2017   May 2017   June 2017   July 2017   August 2017   September 2017   October 2017   November 2017   December 2017   January 2018   February 2018   March 2018   April 2018   May 2018   January 2008   February 2008   March 2008   April 2008   May 2008   June 2008   July 2008   August 2008   September 2008   October 2008   November 2008   December 2008   January 2009   February 2009   March 2009   April 2009   May 2009   June 2009   July 2009   August 2009   September 2009   October 2009   November 2009   December 2009   January 2010   February 2010   March 2010   April 2010   May 2010   September 2010   October 2010   November 2010   December 2010   January 2011   February 2011   March 2011   April 2011   May 2011   June 2011   July 2011   August 2011   September 2011   October 2011   November 2011   December 2011   January 2012   February 2012   March 2012   April 2012   May 2012   June 2012   July 2012   August 2012   September 2012   October 2012   November 2012   December 2012   January 2013   February 2013   March 2013   April 2013   May 2013   June 2013   July 2013   August 2013   September 2013   October 2013   December 2013   January 2014   February 2014  

Looking for Great Gear, Bait, and Advice?
We suggest a visit to our friends at....

image linking to 100 Top Bass Fishing Sites
Copyright (c) 2000-2008
All rights reserved.