November on Lake Wateree means cooler water temperatures, shorter days and hungry bass, according to pro angler Dearal Rodgers of Camden.
“The late-fall fishing season begins in November, and the bass will gorge themselves throughout the month getting ready for winter,” he said. “Fall bass feed heavily on Wateree’s three main food sources: shad, bluegill and crawfish.”
Wateree bass use several types of cover during November, according to Rodgers, including rocks, grass, laydowns and docks. And, he said, don’t overlook brush around docks.
“I look for productive areas by searching for shad, bluegill and bird activity. If you find the bait, there will be bass. I don’t get caught up in targeting one certain area,” he said. “Bass can be caught on the main lake, backs of coves, points and everywhere in between.”
Rodgers prefers specific lures for specific targeted areas.
“For rocks and laydowns, I like a crankbait best. A Strike King 1.5 in shad or crawfish patterns can be great, and I always try a No. 7 or No. 8 Shad Rap under post-frontal conditions,” he said. “For Wateree grass, a Snag Proof Frog is hard to beat. Use dark colors in low-light conditions and lighter colors for sunny conditions. Don’t be afraid to throw the frog in broad daylight, and always use 50- to 65-pound braided line.”
November brings cold fronts, and they often require a change in tactics, he said.
“For tough, cold-front conditions, try flipping a worm or small craw. For docks and the brush around the docks, you can’t beat a Buckeye Lures Mop Jig. I throw 3/8- and ½-ounce jigs in green pumpkin, black/blue and Texas craw colors,” he said. “Fish the jig on baitcasting equipment with a minimum of 15-pound line. Concentrate on every dock pole and ‘worm’ the jig through the brush.”
Post-front conditions also require smaller baits, Rodgers said.
“Try the Buckeye Mini Mop jig to get more bites. I have seen some giants caught on a smaller profile jig in November,” said Rodgers, who has one final tactic for reluctant November bass.
“If all else fails, pick up an 1/8- or 3/16-ounce Spot Remover, push on a green pumpkin trick worm, tie it to 8-pound line on a spinning rod and throw it at every piece of cover you can find.”