The reservoirs on North Carolina’s Yadkin River chain fish reasonably well for bass during the summer, but one stands out: deep, clear 5,200-acre Badin Lake.
Bass pro Dylan Fulk of Concord, N.C., said two factors draw him to Badin when the weather really heats up: big schools of bass that wind up offshore and miles and miles of shallow grass along the shoreline.
“I feel like the fish will get in larger groups on Badin than the other lakes on the Yadkin chain,” Fulk said. “The other lakes, you can maybe find three or four fish on an offshore spot, maybe as many as 10, but Badin is the only place when you can find huge schools of bass during the summer.
“And it’s really deep; there are plenty of places to fish deep. You’ve got the chance to fish a lot of baits you normally wouldn’t.”
Fulk said most Badin bass will be caught in 18 to 25 feet of water around points, humps, ditches and brush piles, which opens up an angler’s tackle box for a number of options.
“You can fish your really big crankbaits, spoons and swimbaits,” he said. “I like to target areas close to spawning bays. They seem to spawn and come out to those kinds of places, and they’ll stay there until August.”
Fulk likes to fish a Yum Money Minnow swimbait on a 3/4-ounce jighead or a Norman DD-22 crankbait in chartreuse/blue or charteuse/sexy shad, owing to the fact that the water near the surface may be clear, but down deep, it’s not.
“The water clarity is great near the surface, but it isn’t clear down deep,” he said.
Fulk rarely starts a summer day at Badin anyplace besides the beds of bank grass that ring much of the lake’s shoreline. He’ll tie on a buzzbait or frog-type lure and work the grass, especially small, isolated pods of grass, for the first hour or two, hoping to put several nice bass in the boat before he heads offshore.
“The great thing about Badin is, if you’re a shallow-water fisherman, you can slow down and spend the rest of the day flipping in that grass,” he said. “But I’m going to go offshore.”