Lake Okeechobee North End Report: June 2016

One of Capt. Eddie Perry’s customers with a 10.3-pound bass. PHOTO CREDIT: Capt. Eddie Perry.
One of Capt. Eddie Perry’s customers with a 10.3-pound bass. PHOTO CREDIT: Capt. Eddie Perry.

With summer approaching fast, the north end of Lake Okeechobee is gearing up for what looks like an awesome summer bite. The early morning spinner bait and top water bite is in full swing, and is only going to get better. The east and southeast side of Kings Bar has some great early morning spinner bait action right now, that’s if the wind will let you fish it. Work a spinner bait, my favorite is a 1/2 oz. War Eagle in the mouse color with a gold Colorado blade in front and a silver willow leaf in back, on the edges of the Kissimmee Grass. Throw your bait a few feet into the grass and work it out to the edge. When you get to the edge stop your bait for a second or two just before you finish your retrieve. Most of the time you’ll get a strike when you ‘kill it’ for that split second. A Zara Spook and a Pop -R are also great for the edges first thing in the morning, so make sure you have one ready to throw.  Skinny Dippers and frog type baits are working well deeper in the grass. After the early morning bite ends, start pitching reeds with a jig or a craw type bait, but keep your Skinny Dippers handy. Keep an eye out for Eel Grass patches as you move inside and make a few casts around the Eel Grass you find, you may get a big surprise.  Third Point, Tin House Cove and Indian Prairie are also producing fish and will continue to get better. Shiner fishing has continued to be good. The guides out of Garrard’s Bait and Tackle have had catches on half days of up to 40 bass in the morning and as many as 60 or more on full days. Buck Head, Kings Bar and Grassy Island are great places to try if you like to live bait fish. Remember to stick to the outside edges where ever you fish right now, the fish are heading out just like they do every year at this time.

Panfish have been taking their time showing up this year, I believe it’s because we have had such a nice spring, cooler temperatures have kept the first good wave of panfish from really getting started, but this to will change as we get closer to summer.  Shell-crackers and some Bluegills have started to show up in Tin House Cove and down on the Shoal, so get ready to break out the ultra-lite spinning gear and crickets and catch a creel full of these tasty little fish. Crickets, grass shrimp, and red worms are prime baits for panfish. You can also try a beetle spin over their beds, black beetle spins with the yellow stripe are deadly in a Bluegill bed.

Speck fishing has slowed down but there are still Specks being caught in the river up by the weir. Minnows down deep work best.

Be sure and stop by Garrard’s Bait and Tackle for all your fishing needs, live or artificial baits, plus a full line of rods and reels, they have what you need.