in Oklahoma, our fall bass fishing is at its best from
mid-September until mid-November. However, Mother Nature can
frequently alter this timetable.
Our dog days of summer can linger until late September and artic
cold fronts have been known to filter down from the north as early
October. On the other hand, there have been temperatures recorded
in the low 70's during November and even December. Our Oklahoma
weather can indeed be unpredictable, but fall fishing usually
produces good numbers of bass and often bigger bass. And with the
exception of early spring, it is the best season
for catching trophy bass.
I don't know that any one angler or biologist has ever determined
what causes this fantastic fall bass fishing. Some anglers
the shorter periods of light are the primary factor, while others
believe that it is the dropping temperatures. I am inclined to
it is a combination of the two that sends bass on one grand
spree before winter sets in.
I especially like fall fishing because school has started,
season has finally arrived and the lakes are beginning to settle
due to the decrease in water activity. Water skies, jet skies, and
pleasure boats are usually being put up until next year, and for
part, lakes are isolated.
Of this entire fall fishing period, without doubt my favorite
is October. As we get into October in Oklahoma, I referred back to
fishing logs (a dairy of fishing trips) to see what lakes, lures,
patterns, and types of water, were most productive for me during
in past years.
One particular item that really stood out was the fact that nearly
all of my October fishing days mentioned cloudy, cool, rainy
This may sound like a dismal month to fish, but my fishing logs
revealed that over the years I have taken numerous big bass during
Since I primarily guide for smallmouth bass in clear water lakes
like; Murray, Texoma, and Arbuckle, the most perfect day to fish
these lakes, is when you have cloud cover or rainy conditions.
One of the best smallmouth that I have ever taken out of Lake
Murray was caught on November 2. I was on a guide trip with a
anglers from Michigan. The weather was cool at 48 degrees and
a steady rain the entire day. We caught 17 smallmouth on
with many averaging between 2 and 3 pounds, a couple over 4
I had the big fish of the day, a good brownie that went 5-14.
My favorite baits this time of the year are either a spinnerbait,
Super Fluke, buzzbait or the Splash-It topwater bait, made by Don
I like to fish the small 1/8 ounce Terminator Tiny-T Spinnerbait
or the Terminator Tiny-T buzzbait both in a solid white color
rocky points, along rip-rap, or over the top of submerged islands.
the past few guide trips on both Texoma and Murray, all of our
been taken on the white Terminator Tiny-T spinnerbait fished on
points close to deeper water.
A pearl colored Super Fluke can also account for lots of October
bass when fished around any type of structure, especially rocks up
shallow. I like the Splash-It in the gray ghost color best and
can catch bass from daylight to dark this time of the year on this
I fish the topwater bait in the same areas as the other baits,
in mind that smallmouth often roam in packs this time of the year
a school of brownies surfaces, the action can be fast and furious.
A couple of years ago, we found the smallmouth schooling on a
cloudy day in October on Murray and we caught and released well
smallmouth in a day's fishing all on the gray ghost Splash-It.
Whether you're fishing a buzzbait or a topwater lure this time of
the year, the key to being successful is to be mentally prepared
strike at "all" times. Smallmouth can be so aggressive
this month, that
if you aren't paying attention, they can literally take a rod and
away from you.
For me, the month of October and smallmouth bass go hand in hand
and from now until the first Artic Front blows in fishing here in
Oklahoma, should be as good as it gets.
Until next month, remember to practice catch and release.