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Don’t Overlook These Locales

Posted: May 22nd, 2013 by Bill Dance

Someone asked me recently what I thought to be the most over-looked fishing spots. Well, one of the most often over-looked spots, especially during tournaments–whether it’s a crappie- or a bass tournament–is marinas.

Anglers are often in such a hurry to get away from the marinas that they actually neglect to consider that there is really a lot of deep-water structure and other ideal habitat to be found at these locales.

Boat slips, docks, sheds and other structures around marinas offer shade and protection for sport fish. These structures also concentrate bait fish.

And at night, well, marinas have lots of light. The light attracts the stuff bait feeds on, and the bait attracts the sport fish.

Finally, in the aforementioned rush to get out away from the marina and fish, anglers often leave behind one of the best spots to catch fish. So next time you go fishing, consider fishing at the starting point, it can pay off.

Of course, boat ramps can also be overlooked. And they can hold fish for many reasons. In the winter the concrete can absorb and therefore provide slightly warmer water. They often extend way out into the water…providing more structure than meets the eye. And also, a lot of people release their catches at or near the ramp, so fish, and sometimes some really nice ones are there lurking about.

Finally, there are bridges. Though not as over-looked as much as marinas and boat ramps, bridges are very easy to by-pass in search of locations most anglers target more, like coves or points. But bridges often have riprap that extends well below the surface at both ends. Every bass fisherman knows such chunky, rock-laced banks are major attractions for plenty of bass forage like small game fish, shad, minnows and crawfish. Often there are also several bridge supports that indicate different depths. Likewise, bridges provide shade — a big reason these spots produce well during the midday hours. And there are the bass-fishing benefits of boat and vehicle traffic.

Boat and vehicle traffic? Yep, the wave action from boat wakes and vibrations from heavy vehicles can dislodge algae growing on the bridge supports. This attracts small fish, which in turn attracts larger fish. Sure, it may sound far-fetched but there is a lot of truth to it. (This theory/idea might also apply at the aforementioned boat ramps, by the way.)

Another reason that bass are attracted to bridge areas is these structures are usually built at places where the lake’s shores come close together. These bottle-necked areas will definitely have more current running through them. And any narrows that occur in a large reservoir or river will usually cause stronger currents. This, too, will attract more baitfish and funnels moving schools of forage through the narrower area where predators have a better ambush point. Plus, during the hot summer months, the extra flow can help improve oxygen content in the water around the bridge creating a comfort zone for fish, during any season.

As always, catch one for me!

Bill Dance

Tennessee

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