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Bass down deep


Rogue Hunter

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I was fishing in the Alex area on Wednesday. I marked baitfish at thirty feet, so set the slip bobber and dropped a leach down. Within a half hour I caught three bass!!! I never thought bass would be down that deep. This is somewhat unsual isn't it?

Rogue Hunter

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I wouldn't think so.

Sanctuary, I think is the term for it.

I've been doing very well with Bass in the 12'-17' range. As a matter of fact, this time of year I always do well with Bass in the 12'-17 foot range.

Try a Carolina rig yollow tube next time. It could be your best fishing of the year.

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This post sure caught my interest. I also have caught very deep bass (and walleye for that matter, 78'). This is very interesting. Fish relate to structure. Lets say the structure is 16' deep, and located very close to deep water. Many times the fish will suspend at 16' and hover over the deeper water. Sometimes the fish are deeper than the structure though!?!(the unknown of the deep) The most logical explanation I can come up with is that the fish are now hovering over a thermocline (the water above the thermocline hold much more oxygen and also show a dramatic temp change). I have maked them on my locator many times in this mode; clearly above the thermocline.

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Here in the middle of New Hampshire our lakes are very clear(see bottom often at 20feet+), very little weed growth, grass on the bottome real deep, lots of rock. In addition to crawdads lots of smelt for forage. When summer sets in I crig with a 3/4 to 1 oz sinker and fish 25 to over 50'deep. Most fish seem to come from the 25 to 40' range. Other options are drop shot,heavy sinkers/jigs with grubs or jigging spoons/little georges etc. You can catch a few fish on the banks but it is almost guaranteed to be a dink.

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I posted this story on another thread, but thought it was appropriate for this discussion. A couple weeks ago in Hayward area fishing LCO, we marked huge clouds of bait fish at 70' over 90' of water! And the occasional hook echos were apsolutely huge...scary actually. shocked.gif

These had to be 50" Musky's. Since there is was a weak thermocline showing, I assume there must still be O2 down there. I also wondered if a guy was to downrig or jig/spoon down there and caught one...would it be a death sentance for the fish (airbladder, ect.)????

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This months In-Fisherman magazine has an article about the Thermocline. There is some discussion about how lakes will stratify differently. It was often rumored that life below the Thermocline was non-existant but that isn't the case. There is food for fish under there and on lakes that don't have a dramatic layer down deep fish will occasionally be found down there. A lot of good info in that magazine so it's worth checking out.

Good Luck,

Corey Bechtold

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This definetly caught my eye when I saw this.. I've been fishing deep water and suspended bait fish for the last 5 or so years. I remember on Rainy one summer finding huge clouds of bait fish down about 30-50fow in 70 feet. Seeing these large clouds of baitfish and the enormous hooks in the clouds really got my blood pumping! I decided to start trolling over the top with a couple of ounces of wait and using large stick baits. Ended up catching some of the largest northerns i've ever seen. One 43 incher that was just enormous in girth! Ever since then I bring the riggers when I visit any unknown lake that has a lot of deep water. We caught smallmouth in 70 fow, suspended obviously and also walleye that we actually jigged over the large pods of smelt.. Another convincing tool is an underwater camera. A couple of resort owners couldn't believe they were smelt down there so I took them out with the camera and showed them exactly what was down there. By the end of that trip we had everybody and there uncle catching fish trolling deep in deep water. Can be fantastic at times.. SB

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SB: good to see you figured this out a caught some giants. How was the mortality on the large Northerns you pulled up?? Were they actually caught in 70'? Or at what depth do you think they were pulled up from? PS I won't fish the ski's down there if it would terminate them...so I for one will discourage anyone from kill fishing down there unless they know they can keep, legally, the walleye, ect. for eating. Just my $.02

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Most of the fish were caught in the 30-50 foot range. As far as mortality, I don't remember any of the fish not swimming away.... Most were still full of spunk. I think that if its over the 50 foot range that might pose as a problem...

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Wow this is a great thread. What kind of electronics are you guys using? Would a vexilar work for fishing that deep?

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