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Smallies @ Chester Woods

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Hi all. I am new to the forum & honestly realtively new to fishing. Anybody have any tactics/hot spots to find smallies @ chester woods. Have been having good luck w/ plastics (texas rig). Any thought/locations or tips appreciated!

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Dan Thiem

Nellie, you have come to the right place to get just the answers your looking for. Welcome to FM-HSO!

I believe Chester has so much structure it's almost impossible to not catch fish out there. This spring was actually my first open water trip out there. Ice fished it before but never open water.

The bass should be hitting surface plugs now. Baby Torpedo, floating Raps, and Jitterbugs.

A couple other things about Chester, they have a minimum size on the bass and the bluegills are managed also. In my opinion Chester has the best gill fishing around. I caught my personal best out there in June. 10 1/8"

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Nellie great to have you. you will learn so much from here it is unbelieveable. Anyway aobut your question. I don't beleive actually that there are smallies out there. Now maybe you know something i don't but i have spent 300+ hours of fishing out there in 3 year and have yet to boat a smallie. But here is what i will tell you for the largies. Fish where people don't fish for them. This means right by the Public access and as far from it as possible. Also if you are willing to fish some of the deeper structure you will also benefit as to most fellas are bank beaters. i have had really good luck with buzzbaits and frogs this time of year and even if you don't get the hook ups the blow ups are a good time. good luck and please do post results and we all like pictures. ike

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Thanks for the info boys!! Ike you're right they are large mouths... told you I am still pretty green crazy.gif

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Tyler Holm


Welcome to I think you’ll find this website to be an excellent source of information and hopefully it helps you catch more fish.

Chester Woods is a diverse body of water with tons of natural structure and deep water.

Get yourself a heavier plastic like an Exude Comida (I’ve been having great luck with the Christmas Tree color) and rig it wacky. For deeper water, I usually put a 1/32 oz bullet split shot above the 5/0 hook so it drops a bit faster.

Good luck and let us know how you did.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Jplante
      Fowldreams, did you have shiners? Just curious if preferred them over shiners, or thats just what you had.
    • fowldreams
      suckers, suckers, suckers. This was the only bait that worked for us last weekend and when the fish hit the rattle reels line spooled fast.
    • Flash
      Thanks! Flash "Set the Hook"
    • MN BassFisher
      What surprised me about the fishery in SE Florida is that it is mostly live bait (Shiners). There are so many fish in those channels that the Peacock's won't chase a bait for long. I guess they can be caught on the fly but your casts needs to be very accurate and your hookset quick because they spit the flies fast. Our guide said artificials could be done but you're going to spend all day to maybe catch a few fish. Watching the videos of those Amazon Peacock's destroying topwater plugs and jerkbaits looks like a riot!!!
    • Alex wilhelmi
      Thanks again guys! Much appreciated!  
    • Nordern
      Smaller suckers and shiners.  One hint is that you may want to get your bait prior to getting close to the lake.  A lot of the area bait shops having a hard time getting the suckers and shiners in the past weeks.
    • Wanderer
      Has your tip up been in deeper water, shallower or the same? I’m hoping to get some iced this last weekend of the season. Devils Lake in ND is a good bet.
    • Mark
      Catching a lot of them in 34 feet
    • tca12
      Back on the Horseshoe chain I put in another 7 hours seeing zero pike yesterday.  I must be using the wrong decoys since I can draw in sunfish, crappies, bass, and catfish all day.  Finally caught a pike on a tip-up outside the house so at least I didn't get skunked again.  Looks like that will do it for spearing season unless I can figure out a North Dakota lake to try...
    • Reid Saarela
      Quick report from last weekend: Fished a couple midlake reefs in big bay and the walleye seemed to be non existent aside from a few dinks, although, the action was pretty decent. Jumbo perch, tullibee, and a few crappie kept me busy. From hearing other people’s late season reports along with my experience last weekend it seems like a lot of the walleye have moved to different types of structure, perhaps shallower?? I’m not sure, but had very few marks that appeared to be walleye.  
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