Lake Travis Fishing Report- March 30, 2021- Lake Travis Fishing Guide
Lake Travis Large Mouth Bass
The bass fishing on Lake Travis only continues to get better! As the water warms up the bass become more active and begin to feed more and more. Currently water temps are around 60 degrees on the main lake, up to 64 degrees in the backs of coves. Of course, this fluctuates if it's a hot sunny day, or if its early in the morning right after a cold night. Pay attention to the water temp where you are fishing as this can help you decided how you should be fishing. Water clarity is the typical gin clear Lake Travis. I have seen water clarity as good at 12 feet on the lower end. If you luck out and get on the lake when there is little wind, bed fishing is a blast since you can see the fish very easily.
Currently there are three patterns that I am focusing on to catch the majority of our fish. Let's break down these three patterns and discuss them a bit.
Currently the bass are spawning on Lake Travis. With water temps in the low 60's this is the prime time of year if you want to sight fish for Largemouth on beds. I love this type of fishing, but don't always get to do a ton of it. When guiding I want everyone to have fun and be fishing. When fishing for bed fish one person gets to be up on the bow trying to catch the fish off the nest while I coach them, while the rest of the group gets to watch. When I get solo clients or groups with only two anglers we've been catching a lot of fish off beds. The bass are spawning all the way from the dam on up to Marble Falls, so it doesn't matter what end of the lake you are fishing! When I get groups of three anglers I usually only go searching for spawning bass if they ask for it... making two people sit and watch doesn't make for a memorable trip.
If you are unfamiliar with catching bass off a bed check out this article I wrote a while back. It has a lot of very detailed information about how I approach these fish.
Lake Travis Largemouth Bass
The majority of the fish I have been targeting are still pre-spawn. Bass tend to spawn in waves, with fish moving up at different times throughout the spring. What this means is that your typical pre-spawn spots will reload quickly with different fish. This is especially nice as I am able to return to a spot multiple times during the week without wearing it out.
Look for points and drains close to spawning coves with deep water nearby. These are typically the first areas bass move to in order to make their way to where they'll ultimately build a nest and spawn. The shorelines directly adjacent to these points is also a very good place to look. In particular, I look for shorelines that have small rocky drop offs, or "veins of rock" as I refer to them. Next time you are fishing a shallow sloping shoreline on Lake Travis take a look at the rocks. I guarentee you'll notice there are small ledges made up or rock with usually 10-20 feet of gravel and small chunk rock above or below those veins of rock. There are more of these below the water line, and this is where the fish congregate. Those areas of gravel, sand, and small chunk rock don't really provide anything for the bass. They don't hold bait fish, they don't provide habitat, and they are not good ambush points for the fish. Those rocky veins on the other hand provide all of that! So next time you are targeting pre-spawn fish look for these and target your casts along them. You can find these by using your side scan sonar, or even just looking on Google Earth at old satellite imagery from when the lake was low.
Medium diving crankbaits, small swimbaits, flukes, and plastics fished along the bottom are all good ways to target these fish.
During spring, one of my favorite ways to chase bass is when they are schooling. There's nothing better to get clients excited than when the bass are literally jumping in front of you! A lot of the deep water marinas on Lake Travis hold schools of baitfish, which attracts the bass. Often times, early in the morning, you can find bass chasing shad feeding up for the day. They will usually be down deep, and once they find the shad, they push them up to the surface chasing them.
Small swimbaits, topwater lures, and jerkbaits can all be excellent baits to target these fish. This is one of the absolute best places to have Garmin Panoptix in your boat. I can't tell you how easy this has made this type of fishing for me! In the past I would wait until the fish jumped to start casting. Once they go back down you are kind of just blind casting. Now all I have to do it pan my transducer around and tell you exactly how far away and how deep the fish are. When fishing open clear water like this I can easily see out to 80 feet away from my boat with the forward facing live sonar. If you don't have one of these graphs yet give me a shout and I will help you get set up through Mealey Marine.
Next time you are our fishing Lake Travis give these three patterns a try! The bite has been good and will only continue to get better until about June. The bite is still good during the summer, but its hard to beat springtime fishing!
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