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Wednesday, May 31st
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Junk Fishing At Lake Of The Ozarks

What comes to mind when someone says “I had to catch them junk fishing”?

Some might think fishing in and around a lot of moss. Some might say fishing in the back of logged chocked coves or pockets. Some might say fishing without putting much of a pattern together. I would say all the answers above are correct. I would like to tell you my version of junk fishing. You may have heard this term talked about from the pros as well. Some pro’s and myself define junk fishing as having about 15 or more rods out on the deck of the boat trying to catch a limit of bass.

      Well here at Lake of the Ozarks starting in September and going through the most of October I find myself junk fishing. I start out with the traditional 4 or 5 rods out and by the time a few hours pass I have 15 or more rods out. This is the time of year fish are moving around and migrating up creeks and rivers for the fall feeding frenzy that we all love in the fall. This is also called transitioning time. The bait fish are moving from deep water towards shallower water because the oxygen levels are better here. The lake begins fall turnover sometime in September and ends sometime in October. Depending on water temps, rain fall, and generation this is the period when fish become tough to catch. This toughness causes us fishermen to get frustrated and doubt our ability to catch bass.

It is now that time of year when you need to load the boat with all kinds of lures and rig 15 to 20 different baits on rods so you can catch a respectable limit. I will have three different top waters on, two different deep cranks, two medium diving cranks, spinner bait, rattle trap, shallow cranks, plastic worm, heavy jig, finesse jig, two different kinds of shaky heads, a tube, and a stick of dynamite. Scratch the dynamite part but sometimes I feel like I would do better with it. The fish can be anywhere at this time of year.

I always start out trying to catch top water fish. Then after that is over I fish main lake points, secondary points, medium depth docks, shallow docks and the back of coves. There will be fish in all of these places but will be scattered from the main lake all the way to the backs of coves. Usually I can catch a couple on top water then one on a crank, then one or two on a jig, then one or so on a worm, shaky head, rattle trap, spinner baits hence the name junk fishing. Until the water cools and the outside temps cool the fish are difficult to pattern.

The most important thing to remember most all of us are in the same boat with this tough situation. Junk fishing can be fun but frustrating at the same time. Always keep an open mind and keep trying different baits until you catch your limit. Here are some of my baits I use this time of year, Black buzz bait, Shad colored cranks,(deep, medium, and shallow running), magnum finesse worm shaky heads, Black/blue jigs and PBJ colors, baby brush hogs, Texas rigged tubes, white swim jigs, pearl flukes, and red eye shad lipless baits. This is also a good time of year to experiment with different bait combos. Try using all sorts of trailers on your jigs or use a tandem rigged fluke system. It may take all of the lures that I mentioned or just a few of them to get your limit. Whatever the case may be keep an open mind and keep chucking and winding until you catch that limit.

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