With all the physical changes taking place at the Red River, it’s nice to know that fishing patterns have remained pretty consistent throughout the years.
Texas-rigged soft plastics definitely dominate, but Southpaw Guide Service owner Russ McVey said there are three patterns that he typically tries in the course of a summer day.
First, he would have a crankbait tied on to catch numbers of fish on the main rivers. Even though many of the rocks have silted in, there are still a few opportunities for crankbait fans.
“Where there used to be 10 sets of wing dams we could fish all the way to the bank, there are now only four,” McVey explained. “Wing dams are designed to catch silt, so I guess they are doing their job.
“But all that silt makes the wing dams fish a lot smaller.”
While he’s out on the rocks, McVey said he would also have a shaky head worm tied on to finesse bass that weren’t active enough to chase the crankbaits. This pattern has really started to shine the last few years, as it is a great way to create a lot of commotion in one little area without moving your bait too quickly out of the strike zone.
“And then I would obviously go with a Texas rig,” he said. “You can fish soft plastics on the rocks, but I would also try them around the stumps right off the edges of the grass. On a cloudy day, grass bass will move out and roam around in the closest wood cover.”
McVey especially likes to fish grass close to a drop-off with wood cover right off of it.
“That’s the kind of sweet spot I look for now,” he concluded, “because it gives you the best of three worlds — grass, contour changes and wood cover.
“It’s hard to go wrong on the Red River with that kind of combination.”
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