Fishing is hot when the water is “right”
Veteran angler Tim Grein of Winston-Salem, N.C., said bass fishing on Kerr Reservoir, aka Buggs Island, can be a great, shallow-water deal if the water level is “right.”
“The water can rise, putting the lake’s trees, bushes and willows in play. Or it can recede, putting points, flats and drops in play,” Grein said.
For the best shallow-water action, the water level needs to be between 303 and 306 feet above sea level, slightly higher than the 301.5 normal pool level. It puts shoreline wood and vegetation in 3 to 5 feet of water.
If the water gets higher than the 307-foot mark, flooding occurs, spreading the fish throughout the dense cover and woods. This makes it difficult for fishermen to reach the fish. The water can rise above picnic tables, roads and boat ramps. That’s the time to stay home from the 49,500-acre reservoir on the North Carolina-Virginia border.
When the water level is between 303 and 306, Grein doesn’t focus upon the lake’s numerous buttonwood bushes like many other fishermen.
“Lots of guys catch fish from the bushes, but the bushes are better during the spawning period,” he said. “For postspawn fishing in June, bushes aren’t my thing.”
Sweetgum trees are good targets
Grein targets sweetgum trees along the sides of points and willow bushes wherever he finds them. He flips them with a 3/8-ounce green pumpkin Missile D Bomb or D Stroyer plastic baits, working them slowly through the tree roots and willow branches on a heavy action, 7-foot baitcasting outfit spooled with 22-pound fluorocarbon.
If the water level drops to 300 or below, the game changes. Grein fishes a Carolina rig, dragging plastics along points, drops and shoals in 10 to 20 feet of water.
“Many of the stumps on points have rotted out. So rocky points are coveted, though productive points can be almost bare; they’re just feeding places for bass,” said Grein. He also fishes deep-running Spro Little John crankbaits in nasty shad and cellmate colors.
.June features great topwater fishing as well. Whether the water is high or low, Grein begins his mornings with surface lures.
Click here for more tips on Kerr Lake fishing in June.