At Pat Mayse, we have more high water with temps in the low to mid 70s and the water is still stained on most of the lake. In the creek area, the water might be on the muddy side. Fishing that creek over the years, I’ve noticed I haven’t had much luck if it’s on the rise or flowing.

With the conditions we have on Mayse and our other area lakes, it tells me to go shallow early and late. During the mid-day periods, 6 to 15 feet might prove to be your best bet. Topwater early and late, and during mid-day squarebills, mid range cranks, creature baits and jigs are your go-to baits. Of course, we all know the bait fish will locate the bass for you, so keep an eye out for the schools.

We’re now in the middle of May, and this is when the bream usually spawn. With our conditions, they might be running a little late, but it’s a good idea to keep on the lookout for those beds. Bass love to feed on bream and that’s what the fish in the shallows might be eating. This is the perfect time to use that zig-zag pattern.

At this time, the bass are ready to be in a post-spawn period and they are in-between because of the water temps. Some males are still guarding fry and these fish are the late spawners. We have females that have been resting after the spawn and other females that have rested and are feeding. These conditions just call out for you to have several rods rigged and ready to give you the best shot at success. Both shallow and deep fish will be feeding on shad, bream and crawfish, so you will need jigs (crawfish), shad (shad pattern baits), and bream (perch colored baits. After you catch a couple of fish either shallow or deep, you have established a pattern that you can repeat on other areas of the lake.

On Fork, the pattern is post-spawn, but it’s still important to start shallow early, especially around grass or pads, and then go deeper later. Fish the high percentage areas such as grass, rock and wood.

Keep that life jacket on when you’re running the big motor and keep an eye on the sky. Be safe.

Fishing Reports

Bob Sandlin: Water lightly stained; 72 to 76 degrees; 0.24 feet high. Black bass are good on senkos, crankbaits and Carolina rigged worms in 11 to 15 feet. Plastic frogs and topwater plugs are working early in 2 to 7 feet in or near grass and lily pads. Crappie are fair on jigs and minnows in brush piles and standing timber. Catfish are good on earthworms, cut bait and shiners in 6 to 15 feet.

Caddo: Water stained; 68 to 71 degrees,1.63 feet high. Largemouth bass are excellent in shallow water near trees and cover in 1 to 4 feet, fishing plastic creatures and frogs, topwater and rattle baits. Crappie are good on minnows and jigs near brush piles and submerged structure. White bass are excellent on jigs and small crankbaits in the main lake. Chain Pickerel are fair. Catfish are excellent on prepared bait and live bait in 6 to 15 feet’.

Cooper: Water clear; 71 degrees; 0.13 feet high. Largemouth bass are good on Texas rigged plastic worms and creatures, crankbaits and plastic frogs in 10 feet or less. Deeper water from 14 to 20 feet is active later in the day. The white bass are good in 12 to 30 feet with slabs, jigs, and jigging spoons. Crappie are fair with minnows in standing timber. Catfish are good on live and cut bait in 8 to 16 feet.

Fork: Water lightly stained; 69 to 75 degrees; 0.09 feet high. Largemouth bass are excellent on plastic worms, topwater and chatter baits near roadbeds, submerged structure and points in 8 to 12 feet and plastic frogs in shallow grass and lily pads. White and yellow bass are fair in deeper water of main lake points, flats, and humps. Crappie are excellent on jigs and minnows in 12 to 20 feet in brush piles. Catfish are good on cut bait and punch bait in 8 to 20 feet.

Tawakoni: Water lightly stained; 69 to 74 degrees; 0.13 feet high. Catfish are excellent on live bait and cut bait 4 to 12 feet. Largemouth bass are good on spinnerbaits, plastic worms, and square billed crankbaits in 6-12’. White bass and hybrid stripers are excellent on swimbaits and slab spoons. Watch for diving birds to mark feeding schools or use sonar to locate fish feeding in schools of bait over deeper points, creek beds and humps in the main lake. Crappie are good on minnows and jigs around brush piles, docks and marinas.

Broken Bow: Elevation rising, water 73 degrees. Largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass good on crankbaits and spinnerbaits around brush structure, points and shallows. Channel catfish fair on chicken liver, cut bait and punch bait along channels, creek channels and in coves.

Hugo: Elevation above normal, water 62 degrees and murky. Blue, channel and flathead catfish good on chicken liver, cut bait, dough bait, live bait, punch bait, shad and sunfish below the dam, along channels, creek channels, main lake, river channel and shorelines. Crappie good on minnows and jigs below the dam, around brush structure, channels, creek channels, main lake, river channel, shorelines and standing timber.

Lower Mountain Fork: Elevation normal, water clear. Rainbow trout good on nymphs, PowerBait, small lures and worms along creek channels, river channel and rocks.

McGee Creek: Elevation normal, water 71 degrees and stained. Largemouth and spotted bass good on crankbaits, flukes, in-line spinnerbaits and plastic baits around brush structure, points, shorelines and in coves. Channel and flathead catfish fair on chicken liver, cut bait and shad along creek channels.

Pine Creek: Elevation normal, water clear. Largemouth bass good on crankbaits, jerk baits and topwater lures along creek channels and in coves. Channel catfish excellent on chicken liver, stinkbait and worms below the dam.

Texoma: Water stained; 69 degrees; 0.94 feet high. Largemouth bass are good fishing plastic creatures, shaky worms, swimbaits and crankbaits in 6 to 18 feet. White bass good on grubs, jigs, live bait, minnows and tube jigs along creek channels, shallows and shorelines. Blue catfish good on cut bait and shad in the main lake, around points and shallows. Catfish anglers should focus on windblown banks where bait is present. Striped bass good on live shad and sassy shad along flats, main lake river mouth and shallows. Striper fishing is picking up greatly on the lake, lots of good box fish being caught on live shad and sassy shad.

Anglers should look for striper near Platter Flats and the islands. Striper have been schooling near the shoreline on spawning shad. Crappie fishing is hit or miss depending on the day. Some crappie are being caught in shallow water but most are being caught in 10 to 14 feet of water on structure. The jig colors that are producing bites contain blue/white/clear.

Fish smart, be safe, (wear that mask until you know it’s not necessary), and I’ll see you on the lake.

Jim Blassingame is a Paris resident and an avid angler.

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