Athens Review, Athens, Texas

December 4, 2012

12/4 East Texas Fishing Report

Matt Williams
The Athens Review

ATHENS — ATHENS — Water level is 3.64 feet low and slightly stained. Water temp in the upper 50s.

Bobby Spearman at Lake Athens Marina says crappie fishing is excellent in 15-24 feet of water around brush piles, mainly on live shiners.

Black bass crowds are enjoying a strong bite on fish to eight pounds. Best bite coming on deep cranks and Carolina rigs in 18-22 feet of water. Spearman says there isn't much happening around the shallow grass; a few small fish reported.

CEDAR CREEK — Water level is 3.72 feet low and stained. Water temp in the upper 50s.

Fishing guide Jason Barber says catfishing has been outstanding using shad, shrimp and cut bait. Humps down south in 12-20 feet are holding fish, as are shallower flats up north in 3-10 feet of water.

Hybrids are good at night around lighted docks using crank baits, swim baits and bucktail jigs. Black bass are holding around docks with three-plus-feet of water and around rocks at the dam, spillway and bridge crossings.

Barber says crappie are hitting hitting shiners and jigs fished around bridge crossings in 8-16 feet and some of the deeper docks with brush.

PALESTINE — Water level is 1.86 feet low and fairly clear. Water temp in the upper 50s, low 60s.

Fishing guide Ricky Vandergriff says bass fishing has been good in shallow water around boat houses with brush using square bills, spinnerbaits and 3/8 ounce black/blue jigs. Carolina rigs dragged around the old 155 roadbed and on points in 10-12 feet also producing some quality fish.

Crappie are fair at the Highway 155 crossing and at the Ledbetter/Highsaw and Flat Creek bridges. Catfish are good on jugs and trotlines tipped with live perch. Drift fishing with night crawlers and vertical fishing on humps in 12-15 feet of water are producing big numbers of channel cat. White bass are slow; a few fish reported on jigging spoons in 16-17 feet of water.

RICHLAND CHAMBERS — RC is 4.50 feet low and fairly clear. Water temp in the upper 50s.

Larry Winters at Midway Landing says black bass are good to five pounds on spinnerbaits worked from the bank out to four feet. A few fish also reported on buzz baits. Good numbers in the two pound range reported.

White bass are good on points in 20-28 feet of water, mainly on slabs. The fish are positioned close to bottom; best bite at mid-morning.

Catfish are good on windy shorelines. Cormorant roosts are producing some blues in the 10-pound range, mainly on punch bait.

FORK — Water level is 4.47 feet low and clear. Water temp in the low 60s.

Fishing guide Gary Paris bass fishing has been good to seven pounds. Good numbers of slot fish coming on spoons, Carolina rigs and drop shot rigs worked in 20-30 feet of water. The fish are roaming in mixed groups with white bass.

In shallow water, spinnerbaits, square bill cranks and jigs are working from the bank out to six feet.

Crappie fishermen are picking up limits at the bridge crossings in 20-25 feet of water. Main lake points around the dam also are beginning to hold fish.

NACOGDOCHES — Water level is 3.22 feet low and fairly clear. Water temp in low 60s.

Bass are fair to three pounds on Rat-L-Traps and Chatterbaits worked around hydrilla beds in 2-5 feet of water on shallow flats up north. Square bill cranks and wacky worms also good for a few fish.

Crappie fishermen are reporting partial limits around brush piles and at the highline crossing.

TOLEDO BEND — T-Bend is 4.44 feet low and clear. Water temp in the mid-60s.

Fishing guide Stephen Johnston says bass fishing has been good on 'Traps and cranks worked along outside grasslines in 10-12 feet. Spinnerbaits and topwaters are working in overcast or low light conditions. Texas rigs also producing some fish along outside grass lines.

Crappie are roaming with the shad. A few fish taking shiners and jigs along creek channels. Up north, the are some crappie positioned along the banks of the Sabine in 12-16 feet.

Catfish are good to 40 pounds reported on trotlines tipped with live perch.

SAM RAYBURN — Water level is 4.73 feet low and clear. Water temp in the low-to-mid-60s.

Fishing guide Stephen Johnston says topwaters, buzz bait and frogs are working around shallow grass in 1-5 feet of water. Lipless cranks, wacky worms and Senkos are producing along deeper outside edges in 6-7 feet of water. Johnston says most anglers are reporting good numbers of small bass, but quality fish heavier than three pounds are few and far between.

Crappie fishing has been fair at the Highway 147 and Ayish Bayou bridge crossings.

PINKSTON — Water level is about 3 1/2 feet low and slightly stained. Water temp in the low 60s.

Crappie fishermen reporting partial limits of quality fish using shiners around brush piles. Bass are good to four pounds using light Texas rigs and soft jerk baits along outside grass edges. Some schooling activity still being reported on the main lake.

NACONICHE — Water level is full and fairly clear. Water temp in the low 60s.

Jerome Hale at Hale Tackle says bass fishing has been slow. Crappie fishermen are reporting partial limits using shiners and jigs.