Well the Mississippi River is up once again. That doesn’t mean the fishing is doomed though, it can be very good if a guy can find the fish and figure out how to catch them. For example, one day I was fishing a slough and went by a point casting spinnerbaits and I had a hit, so I stopped the boat and turned around and tried to catch what ever it was, but no luck. I had the hit near the boat so I tried casting out further and let the bait drop to the bottom and I casted out a little further each time to try to find the drop off. I noticed there was a lot of brush near the drop off and figured it was an old beaver hut. I finally started catching fish right near this drop off. I had to let the bait drop to the bottom to get them to take the bait. This spot kept putting out fish for years, and it was also good sometimes in the summer. Once a guy figures out a pattern like this, they can use it during tournaments and have confidence that no one else will figure out how to catch these fish.
In the Fall the fish start to school up, so fishing can be very tough unless one finds the schools. Even if a guy finds the fish they must be able to get a pattern going on how to catch them. For some reason letting a bait drop works good in the fall. A guy can lose a lot of lures but it is well worth it because the fish seem to run a lot bigger in the Fall.
The Walleyes do the same thing, they school up and move around and fishing can be the worst or the best if the Walleyes are found and patterned out as to where they are laying and what they are biting on. The fish can be shallow and right on top of the wingdams or they may be in 18′ of water out in front or off the ends. At times they are even behind the wingdams.
The strippers can be on a big feed in October and the fish run in big schools. More times than not these fish can be found right behind wingdams but they also feed right on top and they do love deep water as well. if they are found it is not uncommon to catch 50-100 fish a day.
The crappies bite well in October, they head for the lakes like they do in the Spring and they can be found in mid to deep water. No minnow is needed because they bite so well.
Some of the best places to find Bass and Crappie in the Fall is where there is a mild current going through a backwater lake, or a lake with deep water. This is because the temperature is more stable. The lakes with no current can get cold over night and warm up in the day and this can be hard for fish to adjust to. The current is more stable. It also doesn’t freeze over as fast.
The tailwaters below dams start to get good in October for Sauger, Walleye, Stripers Bass and Crappie. It all depends on the conditions each year.