Joe Joslin

Hello, anglers. If you venture outdoors, there is no escaping the heat. August daytime temperatures in southwest Louisiana and southeast Texas are normally 90-95 degrees but multiple days of 100 to 105 degrees is not what we are accustom to having. Anglers are fishing the first couple of hours of daylight and the last hour or so before dark. Late afternoons see little relief as it is almost 7:30 p.m.before any cooling begins. Weather forecasts do look better later this week with cloud cover and rain chances returning.

The early mornings are offering the best relief and the best fishing. If you can't get enough time on the water with that schedule, you might should plan on fishing after dark. Don't despair, we are in mid August and September will offer some cooling as nights get longer and days shorten a bit. We might even see a cool front. Bring it on!

LAKE CONDITIONS: The lake level is 171.7 feet and falling as rainfall has come to a screeching halt. Both generators are operating 9 hours daily from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Water surface temperatures are running from 87 to 91 degrees. North Toledo is clearing, mid lake is clear and south Toledo is very clear. There are stained conditions in back of major creeks. Also, old creek bed have lots of schools of baitfish, especially where they enter the main lake.

READERS QUESTIONS: WHAT'S A THERMOCLINE? The thermocline is a layer of water or dividing line which forms in many southern reservoirs in the summer and separates warm and cold water.

The colder water (sometimes 15-20 degrees colder) is more dense and heavier which sinks to form the lower layer and the warmer water stays above the thermocline. Currently at Toledo it is showing up about 24 feet down which is the norm according to my records.

Most quality depth finders, such as Lowrance's X135 and their new LMS-520C, clearly show this layer all over the lake. For the most part, the oxygen levels below that depth are quite low and a lot of fish in the summer will hold just above the thermocline which is something anglers should keep in mind. . The thermocline will dissipate this fall with the passing of a few cool fronts as the heavier, colder water will sink and mix and good oxygen levels will return to all depths in the lake.

FISHING REPORTS/BASS: At first light, target points with submerged grass. With the lake falling, more grass is going to be visible on the surface and bass will begin to relate to points even more than normal. Work top water poppers such as Frenzy Poppers in Grey Ghost. This is an awesome little bait and comes with a white/red feathered tail. Don't rush it but fish it slow....very slow with long pauses. Also, when the bass hits, hesitate a couple of seconds before setting the hook. If they don't want the topwater, work the 6-12 feet depths with a wacky rigged green pumpkin 5 inch Berkley Gulp! Sinking Minnow or watermelon blue Senko.

When these patterns slow down, try the 12-20 feet drops and creek bends with Carolina and Texas rigged June bug Berkley Power Worms in 7 and 10 inch as well as Stanley Wedge Worms and lizards in Red Bug. Also, jigs and pegged TX rigs to pitch/flip the outside edges of deep grass in the Housen Bay, Toro Bay, Six Mile as well as Mill Creek as there is quality submerged grass in all of these creeks. The bass are moving to the outside edges with the lake falling.

CRAPPIE: The crappie are mostly hanging in deep brush in 22-28 feet and a few good crappie are coming off live shiners in baited tops with anglers having to go to very light line as water is very clear and fish have been under a lot of fishing pressure. Vanish or Berkley Fluorocarbon (6 pound test) would be a good choice or you could use regular 8 pound mono for main line and use the fluorocarbon for leader on the end of swivel.

STRIPER: Striper activity is still good below the generators late afternoon. 7:45 to 8:45 p.m.are, at times, excellent as the generators have been shutting down at 8 p.m. and fishing/schooling activity will last a few minutes after the shutdown. Above the dam, the same thing is possible. Anglers are also catching a few trolling deep crankbaits from the Louisiana Islands south to the dam.

AUTHOR INFO: Joe Joslin is a syndicated columnist, tournament angler and pro guide on Toledo and Sam Rayburn. His sponsors include Skeeter Performance Boats, Yamaha Outboards, Red River Marine, Alexandria, LA, Berkley, Fenwick, Abu Garcia, Daiichi, Stone Mountain Flooring, Jay's Carpet One and Stanley Jigs Inc. Contact him at 337-463-3848 or

Fish Species: bass and crappie
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Atlanta angler, Bill Elliot, found a nice Toledo lunker.
Atlanta angler, Bill Elliot, found a nice Toledo lunker.

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Joe Joslin

About The Author: Captain Joe Joslin

Company: joe joslin outdoors

Area Reporting: South Toledo Bend

Bio: Joe Joslin is a syndicated outdoor writer and writes for several Louisiana newspapers and numerous magazines including Texas Game and Fish, Louisiana Game and Fish, CenLa Sportsman, Louisiana Sportsman and LakeCaster. Joe has been fishing Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn for 25+ years and is a frequent tournament angler. Joe has been a full time pro guide on Toledo Bend/Sam Rayburn since 1998.Joe Joslin Outdoors Fishing Guide Service Wholesome atmosphere * Safety minded * Latest equipment, featuring 21i Class Skeeter with 300 hp Yamaha HPDI * Tackle supplied upon request * References available upon request * Available Year-Round. E-Mail Joe at

337 463 3848
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