Another Update on the Heartland'™s White Bass Conundrum and Doldrums

The white bass conundrum that has plagued many veteran and talented anglers at various waterways in Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma is no longer affecting John Kehde and Steve Bloess, both of Sedalia, Missouri.


Since November 1, this duo has been enjoying some stellar white bass fishing at the Lake of the Ozarks.  They are surprised and pleased, because they had struggled mightily all year at nearby Truman Lake to locate and catch vast numbers of white bass.

What's more, they are catching them despite having to battle significant post-cold-front conditions.  For instance,  on this full moon day in early November,   area thermometers around the Lake of the Ozarks  ranged from a low of 35 degrees to a high of 49 degrees. A cold wind angled out of the northwest by west at 13 to 28 mph. The sun sparkled brilliantly in the ultramarine sky. The lake's surface temperature registered 57 degrees.


In the vernacular of  anglers, it was a classic bluebird day, which means that it could be a trying one for catching fish. In fact,  one member of the Finesse News Network who spent several hours on a northeastern Kansas waterway reported that it was a arduous  day for him, and he thought the bluebird-affect was what made his outing an onerous one.


But Kehde and Bloess allowed the northwest wind propel their boat along several miles of shorelines and across a number of points, while they used spinning tackle to make casts parallel  to the shorelines and points. Most of their casts were executed with a  quarter-ounce lipless crankbaits in a chartreuse hue, which they retrieved at a moderate pace eight to 10 feet off the shoreline.  Periodically, they tested a quarter-ounce, chartreuse Worden's Rooster Tail and a 1/16-ounce marabou jig, but neither one of these baits could match the effectiveness of their lipless crankbaits.

Kehde and Bloess didn't keep an exact tally of their catch, but they are certain that they caught and released more than 100 fish. Most were jumbo-sized white bass. They also tangled with four wipers and a dozen largemouth and spotted bass, and the biggest largemouth bass weighed three pounds.  They estimated that one wiper weighed about 15 pounds; Kehde said it was real donnybrook to land that brute on finesse spinning tackle. Besides that humongous wiper, and another wiper looked to be a seven-pounder.

Not only are Kehde and Bloess surprised and pleased with this recent turn of events, but they are now thinking that his bonanza might have enough oomph to continue into December.

In the days to come we will report on what is transpiring with Gary Dollahon of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, Jerry Kropff of Afton, Oklahoma, and Joe Davis of Tulsa in their pursuits of the white bass that abide in the waterways across northeastern Oklahoma. We will continue to report on the Lake of the Ozark endeavors of John Kehde, Roger Kehde and Steve Bloess.  And perhaps by the end of the year we have a better understanding of what's up with the Heartland's white bass.

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