Joe Joslin

Hello, Anglers. Hunting season is winding down, fishing season is coming to the forefront and boat traffic is definitely picking up on my fishing hole. Last week was work if you make part of you living in a bass boat. Cold temperatures, frequent rain with sleet mixed in and plenty of northeast wind were the norm on some of my favorite fishing spots.

As a matter of fact, a couple of days last week there was no logical reason to be on the lake and we actually pulled the plug on those trips and rescheduled. Those decisions to sit in the lake house, drink hot chocolate and get caught up on e-mails proved to be wise indeed. Even though our time on the water was limited last week, we still were able to catch some bass. One afternoon trip was especially productive and we did not have to travel very far. This weeks weather has been much better.

LAKE CONDITIONS: At press time, the lake level was reported as being at 168.4 feet but Monday morning both generators were activated and there was no shut-off time reported. The SRA website stated that the reason for generators running was because of emergency need of power. To verify, I also called the SRA service line and received the same information. North Toledo is slightly stained to moderately stained, mid lake is mostly clear and south Toledo is clear. Water temperatures are from 49 to 52 degrees.

FISHING REPORTS/BASS: For shallow to mid-depth patterns, submerged vegetation is still the key. Due to high winds and threatening weather, I logged several hours of boat time last week 'in my back yard' and fished some area I haven't fished in a while. I'm speaking of Indian and Buck Creeks which are located on the extreme southwest part of The Bend. This area is nostalgic to me as it is where I taught my two sons how to fish, ski and operate a boat.

For the past few years, I have hardly fished these areas because there have been very little submerged grass to hold bass. That has changed to some extent as I found several areas with healthy grasses which held good populations of bass. I found no hydrilla but lots of milfoil and pepper grass. It was very encouraging to catch bass again in those areas.

Some of my successful patterns were to work Berkley's Frenzy Rattlr' (lipless crankbait) and a Stanley 3/8 ounce spinnerbait along the outside edge of the grass which is from 4 to 8 feet. We also caught fish in 8-10 feet with wacky rigged Berkley Sinking Minnows and Senkos. In addition, another good producer has been to work a light Texas rigged Berkley Shaky Worm (5 and 7 inch in watermelon candy) in 8 to 12 feet.

Deep patterns have been to work a heavy Carolina rig, jigging spoon and drop shot in depths from 22 to 38 feet. Jerk Shad and Flukes have produced on the C.R. and 5 inch Wacky Crawlers on drop shot. With spoon patterns, I am mostly using a 1/2 ounce custom made jigging spoon in 28 to 40 feet.

CRAPPIE: They Flew The Coop!! Crappie experts have been scratching their heads as to why The famous Chicken Coop is not happening this winter. The water conditions are perfect but the crappie are not reading the manual.

A few large crappie are being caught up main feeder creeks near the creek bed but the thousands of crappie which The Coop normally gives up has yet to happen. One crappie guide, Noe Garcia, who is normally booked solid in January with eager perch jerkers, stated "If we don't catch'em at The Coop, there will just be more fish for the spawn run." Maybe so!

WEBSITE UPDATE: We just posted some new bass photos on Check out Trophy Room.

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, Lake Charles Toyota, Red River Marine/Alexandria, LA, Berkley, Fenwick, Abu Garcia, Daiichi, Jay's Carpet One DeRidder, The Floor Trader Lake Charles and Stanley Jigs Inc. Contact him at 337-463-3848 or and WEBSITE

Fish Species: bass
Bait Used: Berkley Frenzy Rattlr, Sinking Minnow, Senko, Stanley Wedge spinnerbait
Tackle Used: Abu Garcia Revo, Cardinal 802
Method Used:
Water Depth: 4 - 12, also 30-40
Water Temperature: 53
Wind Direction: east
Wind Speed: 15

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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
Click Here For Past Fishing Reports by Captain Joe Joslin