Lake Athens

This past week, fishing traffic continues on Lake Athens. Bass anglers are finding solid catches with light Texas rigs, Senkos and wacky worms around grass beds.

ATHENS - Water level is about 4 inches high and clear. Water temp in the mid-70s.

Fishing guide Jim Brack says bass fishing has been fair. Frogs and weightless Flukes are good bets when fishing over the tops of shallow grass beds. Also some fish hanging along the outside edges of grass in 8 feet, taking jigs and Senkos. Crappie fishing has been good around brushpiles in 15-25 feet. Shiners and jigs producing equally well.

CEDAR CREEK - Water level is about full pool and stained. Water temp in the low 70s.

 Fishing guide Jason Barber says catfish, white bass and hybrids are good around retaining walls in 2-5 feet during the early shad spawn, then moving to humps, ridges and points in 8-12 feet, mostly on cut shad. Crappie are best around docks in 6-10 feet shooting jigs. Brush piles also giving up some keepers. Black bass up to 6 pounds are still shallow and hitting square bills, spinnerbaits and bladed jigs on rock points, bridge rock and the dam. Shad spawn areas have been particularly good early in the day.

 FORK - Water level is at full pool and fairly clear. Water temp in the low 70s.

 Tony Parker at the Minnow Bucket says Pop Rs and popping frogs are producing fair numbers of bass early in the day, mostly in areas with shallow vegetation in 1-4 feet. Some fish still on spawning beds in pockets and coves off the main lake down south. Drop shots and crankbaits also working in 10-15 feet of water on points. Crappie fishermen picking up steady limits around brushpiles in 20 feet and bridge pilings in 16-20 feet. Fishing guide Gary Paris is finding large groups offshore using Live Scope. Good numbers of channel catfish taking punch bait. Lots of fish moving into the shallows. A few white bass showing up in creeks at the north end of the lake.

 HOUSTON COUNTY - Water level is about full pool and slightly stained. Water temp in the mid-70s.

 Crockett Family Resort is reporting fair action bass up to 6 1/2 pounds using white spinnerbaits, cranks and worms in green pumpkin, watermelon and blue fleck colors. Deeper docks with brush are producing the better quality fish. Crappie fishermen are picking up partial limits using shiners around brush piles at mid-range depths. Bream are good using small worms under a cork and around docks. Catfish are good using shrimp and night crawlers.

‘PINES - Water level is about 8 inches high and stained to fairly clear. Water temp in the low 70s.

 Bass pro Jim Tutt says anglers are reporting good numbers in the 3-6 pound range using Texas rig worms and weightless Flukes at the north end of the lake on points with shallow grass. Square bill cranks also producing on windy points with rock. Crappie are still good on small shiners and pearl jigs soaked around brushpiles and standing timber. Catfish are good around baited holes using punch bait.

 LIVINGSTON - Water level is at full pool and stained. Water temp in the mid-70s.

 Fishing guide Dave Cox says white bass fishing has been good around Dove Island and Pine Island when the wind allows for getting out. White slabs are the ticket around humps in 11-17 feet. Crappie are improved around boat docks in the mid and upper lake areas. Jug line sets in Harmon Creek also have been productive for quality blue cat, as have trotlines around the river channel near Palmetto Basin. Cox says black bass are taking dark color craws, jigs and few on square bills fished around deeper docks and stumps near creek channel breaks at the upper lake.

NACOGDOCHES - Water level is about full pool and stained to muddy. Water temp in the mid-70s.

 Bass fishing has been fair using chartreuse/white spinnerbaits, swim jigs and light Texas rigs worked around shallow grass. Also a few quality fish up to five pounds reported along the dam. Floating worms also producing a few fish around patchy shore cover. Offshore bite has been hit or miss on hard bottom structure and isolated stumps on points. Crappie are fair around brushpiles at mid-range depths using shiners and jigs.

 PALESTINE - Water level is about 3 inches high and muddy up north, clearer at the south end. Water temp in the low-70s.

 Fishing guide Ricky Vandergriff says bass anglers are finding some solid fish shallow around brush and flooded vegetation using frogs and white swim jigs. Also some fish holding on points and drops in 4-12 feet, taking Carolina rig plastics and shad pattern cranks. Crappie are best around brush near river breaks and around standing timber 14-17 feet deep. White bass are picking up on points and underwater road bridges, taking spoons and deep cranks. Channel cat are good along the river in 19 feet, mainly on night crawlers.

 RICHLAND CHAMBERS - Water level is at full pool and fairly clear. Water temp in the mid-70s.

Fishing guide Royce Simmons says white bass and hybrid action has been excellent early the day using silver slabs and Sassy Shads around the 309 Flats, Pelican Island and the old 287 roadbed. Simmons says crappie fishermen are picking up good numbers around docks and brushpiles in 20 feet using small shiners and jigs. Blue cats are good on wind blown points and shorelines using punch bait and fresh cut shad.

 SAM RAYBURN - Water level is 8 inches high and fairly clear down south, dirty up north. Water temp in the mid-70s.

 Fishing guide Randy Dearman says bass fishing has been good to around 6 pounds. Lots of small fish reported with some schooling activity throughout the day. Early action has been really good in areas where shad are spawning around hay grass edges, bushes and clay points. Topwater poppers, frogs, spinnerbaits, crankbaits and light Carolina rigs all have been producing bites Also some quality fish hanging around brushpiles in 22-24 feet of water to be caught on cranks and plastics.

Dearman says crappie fishing has been excellent. Lots of small fish coming on shiners. Brushpiles in 22-35, fish are suspended 12-14 feet down. No report on catfish.

 TOLEDO BEND - Water level is 2 inches high and stained up north, clearer down south. Water temp in the mid-70s.

 Fishing guide Ben Matsubu says bass fishing has been fair to good. Lots of small fish schooled up shell beds in 5-8 feet, hitting cranks and Carolina rigs. The better quality fish are holding on points, ridges and humps in 18-30 feet, taking big shaky heads, crankbaits and football jigs.

 Crappie fishing has been good in the clearer water down south. Brushpiles in 19-25 feet are holding the most fish, suspended 10-15 feet down. The long bridge is also giving up some decent numbers at times. Shiners and small jigs producing equally well at times. Trotlines have been producing good numbers up north whenever the wind allows for getting out.

 NACONICHE - Water level is about three inches high and clearing. Surface temp in the mid-70s.

Local angler David Russell says the bass bite is much improved over the last week. The best numbers are coming shallow, but better quality fish are chasing shad at suspended depths along timber edges. Russell says tailspins, swim jigs and wacky rigged plastics are producing good results.

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