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Mike Roux: Banking on a pond, part II

  • The author enjoys the productivity that fishing a farm pond from the bank can bring.

    The author enjoys the productivity that fishing a farm pond from the bank can bring.
    Courtesy of Mike Roux/photo by Parker Dietrich

 
By Mike Roux
Outdoors writer
Posted on 6/6/2018, 1:00 AM

A good example of bank fishing a pond happened just this past April. I always have a jon boat in my truck during turkey season. We all know that spring not only means gobbling toms and mushrooms, but great fishing as well. You just never know when a good-looking farm pond may appear before you.

At 7:15 a.m. I was finished turkey hunting. A 23-pound gobbler had cut my hunt short and extended my fishing all at once. After I quick call to check-in my bird, I was off to the pond.

"I should be fishin' by 8 o'clock," I said to myself. But my plans got changed again.

The road leading to the pond crossed a small field. I should say ... the road that used to lead to the pond. John's chisel plow had erased the possibility of me driving to the pond. This meant I had to walk, with no boat. This minor turn of events did not, however, dampen my spirits. Many big bass have been "lipped" from the bank instead of a boat.

I got to the pond and gave a quick look around. About 90 percent of the water was still in the morning shade. Not much had changed since my last visit. The water color was constant, about like iced tea.

I sat down and put on my hip boots. Carrying them across the plowed field was much easier than wearing them. Tying on a white spinnerbait, I headed for the south end of the pond.

This hole is oval-shaped, so I was going to fish the two "small" ends first. There is an old fence through the south end, about 20 feet out in the water. I guess in the past it had kept cattle out of the rest on the water. This fence and its posts are great structures to fish around. It would be a bit tricky from the bank, but not impossible.

My first several casts were to the inside, and parallel to the fence. No luck. "Maybe deeper," I thought. A large multi-flora rose hampered my casting on the outside of the fence. I waded in several yards from the fence and slowly worked my way back to it. I wanted to maintain my parallel casting without disturbing too much water underfoot. I connected with a 15-inch largemouth on my third cast outside the fence.

I circled the pond and repeated the process from the other bank, with very similar results. This told me the bass were holding in about 4 feet of water. Because of that, I adjusted my casting method to compensate. Instead of casting parallel and very close to the bank, I opened up the angle a bit to keep my bait in the Strike Zone as long as possible on each cast.

I did not make a trip to the taxidermist that day, but I did manage to catch a dozen nice bass. I really do not think a boat would have given me any advantage.

The fish I took from the bank came from being able to read the pond and find the pattern. Remember some of the points I have covered here today and maybe you will be more successful the next time you try to make a bass withdrawal from the bank of a pond.