Joe Joslin

Hello, Anglers. The stretch of beautiful, fall weather has been a pleasant experience and it was nice to have a week without weather related fishing trip cancellations. We caught a good many fish last week but there are some new patterns as the fish population has been moving around some with all of the high water. The fall sunsets and sunrises are simply breath-taking so don't forget your camera when you head out. The skies seem to have richer, red hues this time of year.

SALVINIA REPORT AND LAKE CONDITIONS: At mid week Toledo's water level remained high at 172.70' msl with 11 flood gates open 2 feet and one generator operating 24 hours. Repair work at the dam continues on the generator situation. Surface water temperatures are running from 68 to 71 degrees which is close to ideal as far as fishing is concerned. North Toledo remains heavily stained to muddy, mid lake is stained and south Toledo is mostly clear. All feeder creeks are stained or muddy in the upper portions but clearing as you get to the main lake.

There is floating, dislodged vegetation from one end of the lake to the other with much of it being giant salvinia(a hated sub-tropical plant). There have been large mats of it floating in midlake areas but it is breaking up as it moves south with current and north winds. I have had several calls/e-mails about this situation asking my opinion about how this might impact the fishery. To give you a straight-up answer....I don't know. However, in observing similar but not as severe situations in the past, the long term effect was not significant.

Eventually, most of the salvinia will go through the spillway/dam and hopefully down the Sabine River to saltwater but some will end up along the shorelines all over the lake. Hopefully, two things will occur to help the situation with the first being the water levels falling and leaving most of the salvinia high and dry. The other being cold weather is not far off and will help kill it. About 3-4 years ago we had a significant rise in water levels in late October and salvinia was scattered all over the lake but we did not see many large breakouts on the lower lake. The high water actually may help to dislodge significant areas of infestation of the plant in such areas as Patroon and San Miguel which have had several acres of salvinia. We'll know more in a few weeks.

FISHING REPORT/BASS: We caught bass last week on top water, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, Texas rigs, Carolina rigs, jigging spoons and drop shot rigs. Over-all the late afternoon bite was the best but the early morning bite improved as the week went on. We would start early morning using a Chug Bug, Frenzy Popper or a spinnerbait (Stanley WedgePlus or Vibrashaft). We would use these along the edge of main grass line as well as over the flooded shoreline grass.

Some of our better bass on this pattern came on the outside edge of the hydrilla (submerged grass) where it falls to from 10 to 20 feet. We also caught some bass on DLNs (Deep Little N's/Norman Lures) as well as DD22s along the outside edge of submerged grass on points and edge of ridges and humps.

Texas and Carolina rigs continue to be successful and we are using them in depths of 10 to 25 feet both in grass as well as over brush and rocky points. Our Texas and Carolina rigged soft plastics have included Berkley's 7 inch Power Shaky Worm, Chigger Craws, Trick Worms and baby brush hogs. The jigging spoon and drop shot also helped us out on tough days as we fished depths from 15 to 45 feet using a slow presentation.

CRAPPIE/YELLOW BASS: South Toledo crappie guide, Butch Perrodin, had several good trips last week with the best catching 64 crappie from sunrise to 11:30 a.m. He is fishing brush in 35 to 40 feet but suspending his live shiners about 5 to 8 feet above the brush. The yellow bass have been nice size lately and have been holding in depths of 25 to 45 feet. The best approach is to use a jigging spoon and fish with a vertical presentation but if the bottom does not have a lot of brush you can also throw a Knock Off (tailspinner by Bill Norman) and let it fall to the bottom and yo-yo it back for good results.

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, Bill Norman , Daiichi, Jay's Carpet One DeRidder, The Floor Trader Lake Charles and Stanley Jigs Inc. Contact him at 337-463-3848 or or

Fish Species: L.M.Bass
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Water Temperature: 68
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big bass are biting like this 9.4 pounder
big bass are biting like this 9.4 pounder

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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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