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North Texas Trophy Bass (Feature Article - see below)  

Deep Water Crappie Texas Style

Cormorant Catfishing Dec 2001


Feature Article

Lake Ray Roberts
The 14.06-pound record largemouth caught in 1993 by Thomas Duncan of Sherman served notice to anglers that the 29,350-acre Lake Ray Roberts, which is on the Elm Fork of the Trinity River about 10 miles north of Denton, was on track to become another Texas trophy-bass lake ----- and the recent adoption of a 14 to 24-inch-slot length-limit should help the bass get even bigger. Only one bass over 24 inches may be kept per day.
    The slot-limit regulation leads to a buildup in the lake of smaller fish that need to be removed. "We need people to harvest the under-14-inch bass so we can have a better-than-average reproduction and growth in the lake," said Bruce Highsmith, the TPWD biologist who manages the fishery. "Catch them, fillet them and eat them, and youíll have a better big-bass fishery."
    The weather will dictate how to fish Roberts during February. If the weatherís been stable for several days, you should be able to fish the back of Indian and Walnut creeks in about 15 to 20 feet of water and catch pretty fair numbers of bass.

    "When itís sunny," advised guide Charlie Steed, "use a 3/8-ounce pumpkin/pepper -colored jig tipped with a green twistertail trailer or Gene Larew Salt Craw, or a black-and-blue jig when itís overcast."
    In northern-type conditions, you need to fish really tight to the cover. Steed offered a little tip that should help put a bass in the livewell: As you move back up into the creeks, youíll encounter cedar and hardwood trees. If you find a hardwood between two cedars (especially if one of the latter is touching the former), fish it ----and get ready.
    "I also fish a red or white Terminator spinnerbait around structure in the shallows," said Steed, who uses a silver Colorado and gold willow-leaf blade combo and a white twin-tail twister trailer to entice the big Floridas.
    Fishing a Berkley 10-inch Power Worm or a 7-inch Riverside Ribbontail worm, both in red shad color, has also been effective for Steed, who noted that a Riverside Big Gun fished r-e-a-l s-l-o-w with a 1/16-ounce weight can trigger the bigger fish into biting.


    "Fish the worms along the rows of trees as they go away form the shallower creek depths," said Steed, "starting in about 8 feet of water."
    The grass around Wolf Island and in different areas of the lake may produce quality fish, especially when fished with lipless crankbait. "A chrome or red Rat-L-Trap, or the one that looks like red pumpkinseed, can really turn the fish on," Steed asserted.
    The veteran guide advises anglers that they should be very careful until they learn the bottom structure of Lake Ray Roberts. There are spots at which the land reaches to just beneath the surface; there are also places like the Isle Du Bois Creek, which is so big that fishing there is like fishing another lake altogether ---- and which is another area harboring significant numbers of big Florida bass.



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