The Meridian Star
MERIDIAN — by Mike Giles
“There he is!” said Matthew Bates as he set the hook on another white bass.
“We’ve got a double, I’ve got one on too,” said Terry Bates.
“Make that a triple I chimed in!” We were having a day of dreams, and it looked like we’d found the mother lode of white bass. They were fat, sassy and eager to strike the Wing Dings we threw at them. If you like fast paced fishing action then you’ll love fishing for these dynamos on cool fall day when most of the anglers have vacated the waters.
Our trip on Lake Ferguson had started slow but we’d located a ledge in the back of a cove that was chock full of white bass. There must have been thousands in the area. We continued working the ledge in open water about 9 feet deep when Terry Bates suddenly set the hook and nailed one. I quickly pitched to the same spot and caught one on a Wing Ding also. We landed them and released them to the live well and went back to casting and pumping the diminutive lead baits.
Matthew Bates also nailed one as we cast out again Wham, bam, this time Terry Bates and I hooked another combo while Matt unhooked his.
Standing shoulder to shoulder and casting in the same direction, we continued catching fish. Doubles and triples were the rule more than the exception and we were getting bit on every throw. Occasionally they’d hit our lure and miss it and multiple whites would strike the lead lures knocking them to and fro, fighting for the food. We were on a school that had to have been 40 yards wide and 70 yards long as we kept getting bites everywhere we threw out, while also catching them right at the boat.
It was rare that we didn’t have at least one on at any time and more common for us to have doubles in play.
“If you miss one, just pump that Wing Ding right up off the bottom again and get ready, because they’ll keep right on chasing it until one of them eats it,” exclaimed Bates!
“A lot of times they’ll hit anything that looks remotely like a shad,” said Matthew Bates.
“If they’re really schooling and feeding hard, just rear back and chunk that Wing Ding and hold on,” Bates continued. “Wing Dings are the ultimate schooling bait because you can get down where the school is and work it fast while keeping it in the strike zone.
Time after time we spotted as many as a half dozen white bass chasing the lure in another fish’s mouth. And occasionally you could drop another lure right down amongst them and they’d eat it too! Our action was almost unbelievable.
“The thing about fishing for white bass is that you can be sure that once you locate them, they’ll be schooled up pretty tight and you may never have to move again,” said Bates. All an angler has to do is keep fishing the area and occasionally fan out as you follow the school. The white bass aren’t shy and you can’t scare them off like schooling largemouth bass.
As it turned out Bates was right on the money about the white bass schooling activity. We’d finally found a huge school of fish and the action was red hot right until we decided to call it a day! We’d finished our day while catching at least 80 white bass and they were still biting! If you’re looking for a fantastic fishing trip, where the fish are eager to eat, then contact Terry Bates at 662-390-3886 and try your hand at catching white bass while the fall action is still going on.
Contact Mike Giles at 601-917-3898
or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org