Yesterday I fished on Old Hickory with a father and his son. The 15 year old son is trying to get a fishing team started for his high school and if he does they will be a force to reckon with! This young man is an amazing fisherman who can flip, walk the dog with a spook, and work a buzzbait with the best of them!
After launching from Flippers we headed up-lake into the river. Water temperature was 60 degrees, 1ft clarity, and stead current flowing in the main channel. I stopped near Cairo boat ramp and we started casting black Hoppy’s Hawg Buzz buzzbaits and white H2O scum frogs to the points of every cove and pocket. Focusing on grass and wood we had quite a few bites the first 3 hours, but was only able to hook into one 1.5lb. Most of the fish were just whacking the baits. I tried slowing down with a Heddon Jr spook at times, but could not get them to commit to it either.
I made a long run to the back of Bledsoe Creek where there is a boat ramp and bridge(this is past Shady Cove Marina). The water temperature dropped to 58-60 and the water clarity increased as we moved further up into the creek. Flipping a blk/blue Big Bite Bait Craw around the laydown trees in 3ft I missed a fished and caught a short fish the first 10 minutes! I thought we were on to something. Continuing towards the bridge we had 2 more bites on a frog and buzzbait, but neither committed again.
I hightailed it out of the creek and continued up into the river to the big island one mile up. Fishing on the right side of the island we started back with out buzzbait and frog pattern for another 100 yards without a bite. This was very frustrating becuase we had good cloud cover, current, and the water temperture 60 degrees, perfect for a shallow bite.
We moved up into Barton’s Creek and cruised halfway in to the creek just passed the wide right turn in the channel where all the boat docks are on the left(on the bluff wall). After passing the docks we idled to the little island on the right bank. Around this island are tons of boulder rocks in 1ft-5ft. We started with a square bill H2O crankbait and black buzzbait. When we reach the upper side of the island we caught a 3lb on the buzzbait! We fished down further casting to more shallow boulders with the same lures without another bite. We fished the bank until it came to a point of a pocket and idled across the pocket to the next point. We set down our buzzbaits and picked up our Texas rig craws and shaky heads(1/8oz) with Mari Gras Zoom Trick worms. Starting on the point and fishing 30 yards down the bank we cast to more shallow rocks. Sitting in 8ft-12ft and casting into 2ft we started swimming them into the boat. We caught two 3+lbs, and four between 1lb-2lbs! Most of the fish came out of the 2ft-4ft range.
The boulder rock bank turned into a bluff wall so we moved further back into the creek. We idled back to were the creek splits and picked up our buzzbaits and frog. Sitting in 4ft-8ft and casting into 1ft around boulder rocks and laydown trees we caught 4 more, including 2 keepers! This was the first time we had been around tons of bait in shallow water. It started raining pretty good and we only had 30 minutes left so we made the long ride back before it started pouring.
Once we arrived back at Flippers we idled to the back where the bridge is for a few last casts. Boy was I glad we did! Casting buzzbaits, frogs, a-rigs, and Strike King 1.5 crankbaits in neon chart/shad, we caught 6 more fish including 3 keepers! The bait and bass were all over boulder rocks, rip-rap, and behind the bridge! It was a fun way to end the day!
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