Lake Claiborne near Homer might be on a diet — but the largemouth bass there are about to pig out on the 6,400-acre reservoir.
The lake’s regular six-year drawdown started in September, and the reservoir will be pulled down 6 feet, giving the lake a much more slender appearance.
But that won’t bother serious bass anglers like Greg Terzia of Ruston.
“Man, Claiborne is the place to bass fish right now in North Louisiana,” Terzia says. “With the lake down and the temperature cooling off, the fish will be feeding on shad and starting to bunch up for the next couple of months until it gets cold. It will be a great bite for fishermen.”
Two of the top spots to find largemouth this month are on the exposed brush tops out from boat docks, and the newly exposed stump lines throughout the lake, especially up the creek.s
“There are a lot of brush tops beginning to show in the lake and they are a favorite spot for bass right now,” said the owner of Terzia Bait and Tackle. “You can see a lot of them and will find others as you fish. Work them over from every angle. It’s time for the fish to start stacking up there.”
And bass love the newly exposed stump lines, which aren’t visible at normal lake levels.
Terzia’s favorite way to fish either of those spots is to start with a Bandit 200 Series crankbait in baby bream or crawfish. When he locates them, he’ll switch to a jig or Carolina-rigged 6-inch Zoom lizard in Christmas tree red or cotton candy dipped in chartreuse.
“But frankly, when the bite is on, you can catch them on Brush Hawgs, spinnerbaits like the quarter-ounce Firecracker War Eagle or your favorite soft plastic monster bait,” he said.
“The best times for this type of fishing is when the water temperature is 60 to 70 degrees. I always try to fish in about 4 to 8 feet of water in these conditions.”
The boat launch at Pleasure Point Marina will probably be the only one open at the height of the drawdown, Terzia said. Anglers should check with someone at the lake before going, or give him a call at Terzia Bait and Tackle in Ruston.
Terzia also cautioned anglers to be aware of underwater obstructions and shallow water where boat lanes used to be. He also reminded anglers to be good sportsmen in the drawdown period and release bigger bass to protect the integrity of the lake for the future. It’s best to keep the 1- to 3-pounders at times like this.