November 16, 2014
Every bass angler should relish the opportunity to visit Lake Fork, a phenomenally productive 33,000-acre impoundment just east of Dallas that seasonally produces many largemouth bass surpassing 10 pounds. Everyone speaks bass here, as Lake Fork is the busiest bass fishery in the world. I once paused on a Sunday in March to note where bass boats were positioned in relation to the potential fishing spots near the mouth of Little Caney Creek. On a nearby point, three bass boats were following each other 100 yards apart, pitching to shoreline cover. Another line of boats was working cranks and jigging the inside edge of a treeline. Other boats where along the outside edge. And you could make out prominent spots on a creek channel by watching where boats were positioned in deeper water. When one boat left the pack, another entered.
March and April are the most productive months on Lake Fork, but I also visit during January or February. Fishing is a bit slower, but usually steady unless you hit bad weather. Every cast at this time of year can produce a giant. And most of the fishing is with jigs and trailers, one of my favorite ways to fish.
Too, there's always something to learn. Area guides are some of the best in the country. Guide Andrew Grills showed me last January how he trims back the skirt on his jigs to make them more compact yet still allows them to display the legs on his favorite trailer, a 3-inch Berkley PowerBait Chigger Craw. Casting lipless crankbaits is another productive winter presentation.
Crappies, channel cats, and blue cats are also draws on Lake Fork, and so too have I fished for the lake's giant smallmouth buffalo, some of which exceed 60 pounds, a story for another day. White bass also abound and make for a fun day on the water. I spent a day last January with Guide Johnny Guice, as he showed me how he uses bladebaits to catch a boatload from some of the lake's bridge areas main-lake points.
Contact: Andrew Grills, lakeforkguideandrewgrills.com; Johnny Guice, lakeforkbigfish.com. Meanwhile, one of the best sight-fishing guides on the lake during March and April is Richie White, bassfishing.org, but you'd probably have to be reserving days in 2016 or 2017 to find an open day.