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Old 07-10-2013, 08:16 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default offshore fishing

I have figured out that for the most part in the summer, I can go out an catch a pretty lame limit of smallmouth on a typical day. I know there are bigger fish to be had. Going to focus on offshore locations.

I tried for about half an hour last weekend. Located a wreck on my lakemaster, went to the approximate location, found it on my side imaging, put waypoints on both ends, and fished between the waypoints with a dropshot. Not even a goby hit. That being said, it is hard to spend your day offshore catching nothing when you could be catching 1-2 lb bass all day. Pretty much why I dont post on here during the summer is no one wants to see endless pictures of 2 lbers. I dont even take pictures unless they are over 3 lbs anymore.

I know no one will give up their rockpiles/ gps coordinates etc. However, if anyone has any pointers on figuring out how to offshore fish for smallmouth I would appreciate it. I can manage quite well in door county fishign the drop-offs, but door county is like a kid in the candy store. Waters around here are a lot harder to find offshore structure.

I almost never see anyone in a bass boat fishing anything except the breakwalls/ tangible structure. That leads me to believe everyone else has read about offshore smallmouth fishing but cant seem to make it work around here. Open to comments/ suggestions.

Almost every article you read online goes like this.

1.) Locate hump/ struture on gps
2.) Verify bait on hump
3.) Success

I just cant figure out step 3.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:52 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: offshore fishing

When I was a mere recreational boat on Lake Michigan, I often came upon shallow shoals and/or rockpiles but really didn't pay them much attention... I did find one once, South of the Burnham Harbor mouth, that held balls of bait... Don't know if it was a wreck or rocks or whatever, but it's there and was loaded... Past all the McCormick Place complex and if I remember right, there was a beach or grassy area onshore...
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:05 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: offshore fishing

Thanks jks.

I think the lack of replies confirms the lack of success.
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Old 07-10-2013, 11:34 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: offshore fishing

Quote:
Originally Posted by duncan
Thanks jks.

I think the lack of replies confirms the lack of success.
I think it's the lack of offshore structure on northern IL lakes. Were you able to locate bait on the wreck with your electronics? If there's no food, there's no reason for the smallies to be there. Did you try any fast moving deep diving baits?
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Old 07-11-2013, 10:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: offshore fishing

Quote:
Originally Posted by duncan
Thanks jks.

I think the lack of replies confirms the lack of success.
Yep. I've spent several hours in the last couple of years fishing Morgans's Shoal , the artificial reef off the museum and various other offshore rockpiles in the southern Illinois portion of Lk.Michigan with no success for SM Bass. I've dropshotted, cast and trolled crankbaits (deep and shallow), and even dragged live bait around with only a few gobies and perch to show for my effort. It's tough to stay out there with no positive reinforcement to boost your confidence.

Possibilities I have entertained-

1. SM Bass in the southern Ill. portion of Lk.Michigan don't migrate to distant offshore structures due to lack of forage.
2. SM Bass do migrate to offshore structures but are so spread out we have not crossed paths.
3. I do most of my searching in late morning, early afternoon; bass are not biting.
4. There is a secret honey hole that I will find one day.

There are more excuses I could list but will save for another day.
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