Maynor Creek, a 500 acre lake located near Waynesboro, homes plentiful lily pads and one creek channel. August is a tough month to catch bass anywhere. However, Maynor’s bass concentrate in the lily pads to dodge the heat.
Know early morning tactics
I’ll start fishing early in the morning with a walking bait like the Zara Spook. A road crosses the lake at its upper end with a bridge where bass tend to school first. I’ll fish a 6’6” FX custom rod and an 8:1 ELS Bruin reel with 30-pound test bass braid. I’ll attach a 4-pound test, 8-inch-long monofilament leader with an Alberto Knot. The leader keeps the hooks on the bait from tangling in the braided line when I cast. Monofilament doesn’t sink as fast as fluorocarbon and allows the lure to work better. I’ll start out fishing this walking lure around the bridge’s riprap points — 50 yards above and below those points on each side of the bridge.
Next, I’ll quickly fish a 3/8-ounce jig head with a small, white swimbait attached just under the surface. I’ll fish with a 7’3” FX heavy action custom rod and an 8:1 ELS Bruin reel spooled with 20-pound brass braid. I’ll fish this swimbait around those riprap points and within 50 yards of either side of the points for about an hour.
Fish the lily pads
When the sun rises, I’ll leave the bridge and move to the lily pads. I’ll fish a green pumpkin bladed jig to imitate the bluegill on which the bass are feeding on the pad’s edge. I’ll use a 7’6” FX custom cranking rod with a moderate tip. I’ll put a minnow type soft plastic trailer in green pumpkin on the bladed jig and retrieve it fast down the edge of the pads, just under the surface, almost waking the bait but not quite. I’ll also retrieve the bladed jig in any openings, narrow channels and/or lanes in the pads on 14-pound fluorocarbon line.
As the sun climbs into the sky around 9-10 a.m., the bladed jig bite will stop as the bass move further back into the lily pads. I’ll fish a Mann’s Super Frog, both white and black on 50 pound braided line on my 7’3” FX heavy action custom rod. I’ll let the bass tell me the color of frog they prefer. I’ll work the frog through the pads slowly and crawl it over their tops, stopping it at any openings or holes in the pads. Then, I’ll twitch it in open holes and slowly crawl it to the edge of the lily pads.
Pack your patience
In August, the Maynor Creek bass bite a slow swimming frog best. You must put your patience in your hip pocket because to be successful, you must fish slowly. You’ll get numbers of blow up bites but only catch about 50 percent. Some of the bass will come up and just bump the frog, while other, more aggressive bass will blow up on the frog. Once I get the frog to the outer edge of the lily pads, I’ll stop it and allow all the ripples to move away from the frog. Then I’ll twitch the frog two to three times, stop it and let the ripples travel away again. If I don’t get a bite, I’ll make another cast. The locations you want to key on to fish will be the areas where you’ve heard bream smacking under the pads. If in a 50 yard stretch of pads bass blow up on your baits, remember that spot, and plan to fish there again that day.
Move to the creek channel
If the lily pads aren’t producing, I’ll return to under the bridge where I started that morning. My bait to fish the creek channel will be a 12-inch Mann’s Jelly Worm in the red bug color, rigged Texas style. My line will be 26-pound White Peacock fluorocarbon on a 7.3:1 ELS Bruin reel with a 7’7” FX heavy action custom rod. I’ll use a 6/0 Gamakatsu swim bait hook with a screw-in attachment to the eye of the hook to hold the worm on the hook. I’ll work that worm slowly around the edge of the creek channel. Some of the creek channels may be silted in, but other portions of the channel will hold stumps and logs. Other sections of the creek channel only will have a 4-5 foot drop-off, while other places will drop off from 10-15 feet. Fishing a worm slowly isn’t nearly as exciting as fishing the lily pads, but it can pay off.
If I catch 10-12 bass in August, I’ll have had a good day of bassing at Maynor Creek. These bass will range from 1½ to 6-7 pounds. I consider a bass 5+ pounds a bonus fish.