In the early 1990s, False River was considered the most-productive trophy-bass lake in the state of Louisiana. However, when the state had to remove the overabundance of hydrilla from the lake, it caused a downward trend in the lake's bass population.
Although False River was still a productive lake for catching bass, it didn't yield the trophy bass it had in the past. Because of this decrease in the trophy-sized bass population, only locals fished this lake.
What's new at False
False River has made a strong comeback this year, and has become one of the best-kept secrets in Louisiana, producing numbers of 8- to 10-pound largemouths. November is a good month to fish False River and catch numbers of bass, because the first cold fronts are moving into this section, causing the water temperature to drop dramatically.
The bass and the shad have been holding on the river ledges all summer on man-made brush piles and drop-offs. But in November, the shad and the bass start moving back to the banks, holding on seawalls, boat docks and flats.
Many houses surround this lake. The shad will move up to the shallow water, the seawalls and the docks, constructed of wooden pier posts, as well as the flats. Anywhere you locate the shad, you'll find the bass.
Which baits work
Early in the morning, at first light, I start fishing with a buzz bait or spinnerbait since I can cover a lot of water and locate the shad and the schools of bass related to the shad. As the sun rises and the topwater bite or the just-under-the-surface bite begins to drop-off, I'll switch to fishing a lipless crankbait, like the 1/2-ounce Strike King Red Eye Shad in the Sexy Shad, chrome/blue or chrome/black-back color. A lipless crankbait like the Red Eye Shad is designed for making long casts, presenting the bait to different areas and locating the shad and the bass. A lipless crankbait fishes water depths of 2 to 6 feet.
My next lure of choice will be the tube bait. I'll start fishing docks with a tube bait rigged with a 5/16-ounce slip sinker ahead of the tube. When the bass move-up to shallow water and leave the flats and the seawalls, they usually will move to visible cover. So, you can flip the docks with a tube bait and still cast to the flats in-between the docks with a lipless crankbait.
To catch numbers in November, determine if the bass are holding on the flats or keying in on the docks. If more bass are concentrated on the docks than on the flats, I'll fish a 4-1/2-inch Strike King Denny Brauer Flip-N-Tube. If the water's dark, I'll fish the black-neon-colored tube, and if the water's clear, I'll fish either a black-neon or a smoke with a red-and-black-flake tube on 20-pound-test Gamma fluorocarbon line. Because I'm pitching at the posts of the docks, the fluorocarbon line will elicit more bites than the braided or the heavier monofilament line will.
By using a 5/16- or a 3/8-ounce slip sinker, I can get a faster fall on the tube than if I use a lighter slip sinker. At this time of year, because the water's cool but not cold and the bass are still active, the fish react better to a fast-falling tube than to a slow-falling tube. The tube has the same length and diameter as a shad, yet it's a subtle bait and solicits a lot of bites.
The False River doesn't have much cover in shallow water, except the boat docks. However, the lake has a number of flats where the shad will school up. At this time of year, the flats at either end of the lake are productive for catching bass.
The major flat, on the east end of the lake, has a big canal and a big flat. Check this spot to find out if the shad and the bass are moving up to the flats. If they are, I'll fish a Strike King Series 3 crankbait in the Sexy Shad color or the chrome/blue-back color. Also, I'll be casting the Red Eye Shad.
What you can expect
I expect to catch 10 to 20 bass in one day of fishing the False River this month, which is a really good day of bass fishing on any lake.
When the lake stopped producing the trophy-sized bass it once did in the past, everyone forgot about False River, causing the lake not to have nearly the boat traffic or the fishing pressure as other lakes this month. Also, most Louisiana sportsmen leave the waterways this month and head for their hunting camps.
If this section of Louisiana gets cold fronts coming through in November, you can spend a day fishing here without encountering many of the summer and the springtime distractions. In November, False River will be your best bet for catching lots of bass and nice-sized bass.