Baitfish out, bass go in

Harvey Horne lives about two hours away from Tenkiller, and he comes here frequently when time allows at what is considered the top smallmouth fishery in Oklahoma. It’s not that right now, but just about any other time it is.

“The largemouth have been back in the creeks all summer, whereas the smallmouth are coming into the creeks,” he said to me yesterday. They are dong that as the water falls, drawing baitfish out of the vanishing shoreline cover and making them prone to being found by the bass.

Horne went on to explain the smallmouth will remain shallow through fall and then move back out. What has everything off is high water throughout the most of the year.

“They aren’t really able to be doing what they should this time of year,” he said.

He continued, “The largemouth are in a transition from the high water to normal pool. They are moving out of the buck brush and when they do that, they will suspend like they are doing now.”

Ideally, what Horne said breaks the fishing drought is when the water falls low enough for the buck brush to be on dry land.

“When that happens, it brings the baitfish out off the banks and into the creeks,” he said. “That’s when the bass move in.”