MISSOURI: Fish Are Still Shallow on Rock & Mixed Rock and Gravel Points


Cooler days and snow and ice storms have lowered water temperatures throughout the lake including Branson. Fishing guides haven’t noticed much change over the past week even with the changing conditions. The majority of fish are still shallow on rock and mixed rock and gravel points and banks, stickbaits, crankbaits and jigs have been the dominate patterns in Branson. Fishing guides have had success with Jewel football jigs in PB&J or watermelon candy with green pumpkin Tightlines UV trailers from 10′ – 20′ deep, SPRO and Megabass stickbaits in the same depth range around isolated timber and Wiggle Warts and Bandit crankbaits on windy rock points.

Kimberling City:

Bass are still shallow in the Kimberling City area just like in Branson. Fishing guides are using the same patterns here as on the lower end targeting rock and mixed rock and gravel points and banks with Jewel jigs, SPRO and Megabass stickbaits and mid depth crankbaits. Add to those patterns an Umbrella rig and you have the potential to put some real quality fish in the boat. Most of the action on the rig has been around timber both exposed and submerged. Look for isolated tree tops on rocky banks to be the most productive, Tightlines Big Jerk and Broken Back Jerk have been the most productive baits in a natural shad color.

James River:

The James River has felt the effects of the colder temps and weather patterns more than the rest of the lake. The bite seems to be delayed a little especially where the water has a little stain in it. As the sun rises and warms the shallows the bite gets much better. The same patterns have been effective on the James and the Umbrella rig bite seems to be strongest in the mid James than anywhere else on the lake. On warm windy days fish have been moving extremely shallow on rocky banks, Branson fishing guides have been catching fish less than two feet deep later in the day under these conditions.

White River:

The strongest crankbait bite has been in the upper White and Kings Rivers over the past week. Wiggle Warts in brown craw and fire tiger and Bandit 300’s in green / orange and brown / orange have been the best patterns. Branson fishing guides are having the most success on steeper banks with rock and small patches of pea gravel, any isolated wood on these banks tend to hold several fish. Position your boat around 10′ deep and make casts more less parallel to the banks trying to maintain bottom contact throughout the retrieve.

Capt. Eric Prey
Focused fishing Guide Service
p: 417-860-4743