time to fish this lake. Weather drives specific bite periods, but the coldest months can be absolutely on fire.
For sheer numbers of fish, Dobyns said it’s hard to beat a nail-weighted Senko. Keeping his color choices simple, he likes the stalwart green pumpkin, along with watermelon/green pumpkin laminate; but he’ll also work baby bass into the rotation.
“Day in and day out, this is the way you’re going to catch a lot of fish and some big ones,” Dobyns said. “It’s a guaranteed way to catch a lot of fish, but you have to be able to catch the right ones.”
Fishing no deeper than 20-feet, Dobyns uses a nail weight appropriate for the target depth He ties it on 8-pound Seaguar InvizX using on a 3-power spinning rod. His top- three rod choices are the Dobyns Champion 733 SF, DX 743 SF, or the Xtasy 753 SF.
Subtlety goes out the window with this presentation, as nothing short of a violent shake will consistently deliver.
“I fish it pretty fast,” Dobyns said. “Those spotted bass are aggressive, and they’ll bite it like that.”
Occasionally, the fish sour on the nail-weighted presentation, but they remain active in that relatively shallow zone. This is when Dobyns will switch to a green pumpkin Yamamoto tube.
“I’ll fish in the same exact places I’d fish the Senko, but sometimes, the tube just happens to work better,” Dobyns said. “That’s why I always have a tube laying on my deck. It’s always a one-two for me.
sometimes I can’t get
another bite on the tube,
but I’ll pick up the nail-
weighted Senko, throw it
out and catch my best fish of
the day. I use both, but there are times when I get more bites on a tube and certain times, I get more bites on a Senko.”
Other productive presentations for Shasta include:
YAMAMOTO HULA GRUB
The Hula Grub is a top choice for a deep bite. Dobyns fishes this bait on a 1-ounce football jig and targets depths of 40- to 60-feet. His preferred colors are green pumpkin or cinnamon purple.
He ties it on with 12-pound P-Line CXX and throws it with a Dobyns Champion 744C, a DX 744C or an Xtasy 754C.
“I’ve had tournaments where all I do is drag a 1-ounce jig with a Hula Grub,” Dobyns said. “A lot of times when I’m dragging that jig around, I’m inside the points and I drag a lot of the walls.
“I do that a lot when we have a north wind and high pressure. Those conditions shut down the shallow bite and the fish just tend to be active deeper.”
Worth noting: Even though he’s fishing deep, Dobyns likes fishing windblown banks. He admits it’s probably more habit than anything, but Dobyns finds a lot of highly productive banks that happen to catch a lot of the north winds common to the winter season.
“I think a lot the fish are shallow until a cold front hits; then they go deeper,” Dobyns said. “The good thing about spotted bass is that they will always bite, and that deep bite is always there.