Westernbass Magazine - FREE Bass Fishing Tips And Techniques - Fall 2016, Page 49

Westernbass Magazine - FREE Bass Fishing Tips And Techniques - Fall 2016, Page 49


Lake Mead is BIG! The lake’s sheer size can pose some major challenges to an angler’s decision as to which of the four main basins to target.

Recent drought conditions in the West have greatly reduced Mead’s size. Although the lake has not reached full pool in the last 10- to 15-years, it is still massive in terms of Western impoundments.

Many anglers visiting Mead have to make the daunting decision to run and gun in search of active bass, or stay put in the lower basin in hopes of catching bass that have been relocated into the Callville area as tournament released bass.


Having a good GPS and mapping system such as Navionics+, Navionics Platinum+ or a Navionics app on your phone can be an important tool to aid in navigation around the lakes many coves and basins and avoid the mishap of getting lost.

Mead has a fairly healthy population of both largemouth and smallmouth bass. Both species of bass can be found throughout the lakes four major basins.

The large basin closest to the Hoover Dam is known as the Boulder Basin. Boulder Basin is also known as the Lower Basin by many local anglers who prefer to stay within eyesight of Callville Bay.


Many anglers visiting Mead for the first time will elect to save gas by staying in the Lower Basin of the lake. Even anglers that target other areas of the lake, feel they shouldn’t overlook the great opportunities

FALL 2016

that Callville can have and plan a stop on their way to or from the launch.

Mercury Marine pro Tony Lain is one pro that indicated that he always makes time to target Callville.

“I will usually try to fish at least one spot inside of Callville Marina to take advantage of the low light conditions,” said Lain. “There are a lot of fish released in the area; so I try to take advantage of getting a couple in the livewell, before making a long run towards the Virgin Basin.”

With the low water conditions at Mead, Callville Bay is a fraction of the size that it once was and that makes some pros leery of spending time in the area.

Ranger Boats pro Joe Uribe Jr. no longer believes that Callville holds the numbers of fish that it once did. According to Uribe, the lake is half the size it used to be and a lot of guys visiting Mead will be surprised as to how small the lake fishes.

“There are not as many tournaments going out of Callville as there used to be,” said Uribe. “The release boats are taking those fish to The Narrows or to places throughout the Lower Basin. The lake is spot- oriented now and it can be feast or famine. It can be hard to catch five fish, if I stay in the Callville area.”

When Uribe does target Callville, he goes about it with a slow and thorough approach. He prefers using bottom baits such as dropshot worms and jigs. He will rig several Roboworms consisting of 4.5-inch straight tails, 6-inch straight tails or 4.5 inch curly tails. He keeps his color options fairly simple, opting for shades of natural or shad patterns.

“I like to use Oxblood Lite/Red Flake, Folkestad’s Special or Morning Dawn,” Uribe said. “I keep it real basic and simple and fish the Callville area real thorough; because the fish in that area are educated from being caught before.”

Uribe believes that overall the bass in Mead are lot healthier than they have been in recent years, but that anglers have to cover far more water to catch a limit of fish.

“You do not see the wolf packs of bass like you used to see,” he said. “The smallmouth bass are thriving in the lake; but during the fall, they can be very unpredictable to pattern from day-to-day; because, they move around a lot.”

By unpredictable, Uribe means that Mead’s smallmouth population is known for traveling long distances overnight. Anglers can have a very difficult