Banks smallies ?

Discussion in 'Warm Water Species' started by Big Tuna, Aug 28, 2012.

  1. I was thinking of heading up to Banks to fish for smallmouth. I've never been up there this time of year and was wondering whether they have moved out of the shallows and into deeper water. Also, if they're in deeper water, can they still be caught on flies?
  2. Having fished pretty much exclusively for smallies the past 4 years, and reading A LOT about their feeding patterns, and talking with some of the nations smallmouth fly fishing experts, I can tell you that you can catch smallmouth on the fly year round. They are gonna be actively feeding while the water is above 59, trying to get fat for the slower months. Check the water temps, 60's mean baitfish/crayfish/helgrammite patterns in the shallows. Vary your retrieve to match the temp of the water. Throwing patterns against cover is most productive. If you think they have gone deep you can add some weight and slow your retrieve, almost to a jigging fashion.I actually had switched when throwing minnow patterns deep and retrieving them slow to using clear thing-a-mo-bobbers 7-9 feets away from my fly. Smallies really don't seem to get spooked even up to a decent speed retrieve. This gaves a tight line Czech-esque set-up. Smallies wills bounce flies around in their mouth or suck them in and out for much longer than a trout, trying to decide if it's food.

    A great resource for smallie fishing is Harry Murry's website and pod casts. Also Lefty Kreh's books are invaluable. Harry will fish for smallies in temps all the way into the low 50's, just gotta swing big meat slow and low.

    Let me know how it goes. I always love to hear about bronze backs. Wonderful fish. I really think they are a perfect mix of rainbow trout and large mouth bass behaviors.
    mwdehaan and Skysoldier like this.
  3. I just fished Billy Clapp on Sat. for smallies and did well. BC is located close to and is very similar to Banks. Wasn't fly fishing, but I see no reason why they couldn't be caught on a fly. Tried a sculpin pattern drop-shotted, but didn't stick with it. Caught our fish on jigs.

    The fish were biting; several disgorged crawfish as they fought at the boat. We caught most of them in 10-20 of water along fairly steep, rocky shoreline,. fairly early in the morning. Bite tapered off after about 10 am. Picked up a couple of walleye too.

    Good luck!
  4. You should do well with a sink tip or even a floating line. I usually just use a wooly bugger with bead-chain eyes and rubber legs and do very well. You can catch large numbers from shore, especially if the shoreline is rocky. Banks is good, but for larger fish I usually hit lake roosevelt.
  5. Thanks to all who responded.
  6. This big girl came on a articulated leech patern.

    Attached Files:

  7. Caddis...That is one healthy looking smallie.

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