West Point Bass On Deep Summer Structure With Micah Frazier
Pro-angler Micah Frazier marks a map with 10 locations for summertime bass on West Point Lake.
In July, the days are often long and hot, and the lakes can be crowded with pleasure boaters. Conditions can be tough for bass fishermen. To lower your frustration and catch some fish, head to West Point Lake. The spotted bass and largemouths there feed even on the hottest days, and summer bassin’ at West Point can put a smile on a sweaty face.
Dammed in 1974, West Point Lake runs 35 miles up the Chattahoochee River and has several large creek arms. There is a 14-inch size limit on large- mouths, but the lake is full of spotted bass, and there is no size limit on them. Each fisherman can take home 10 spotted bass of any size, and removing small spots from the lake will help future bass fishing.
According to the Georgia Bass Chapter Federation Creel Census Report, it takes about three hours of fishing to bring in a keeper bass. That sounds like a lot, but that ranks fourth among Georgia lakes, meaning you will catch more bass at West Point per hour than on 10 of the 14 major reservoirs. Almost one-third of Georgia club fishermen weigh-in limits during West Point club tournaments, a tie for second- highest in the state. And the number of hours it took to land a 5-lb. bass was sixth in the state.
So how can you catch a lot of bass at West Point right now, with a good chance of a 5-pounder in your livewell? Micah Frazier can help. Micah grew up in Newnan, close to West Point Lake. He has been fish- ing with his family as far back as he can remember, and, as he got old enough to plan his future, Micah never wanted to be anything but a professional bass fisherman.
As soon as Micah got his driver’s license at 16, he started fishing tournaments as a boater. Micah became the youngest angler to ever win a BFL as a boater when he won a Bulldog Division tournament on West Point five years ago at the age of 16.
Micah loves West Point and fishes it every chance he gets. He competes in team tournaments there when his pro schedule permits. He has fished the FLW Series the past two years as a boater and made the championship each time, and this year he has won a check in both the Series tournaments so far. He is also fishing the FLW Tour as a co-angler this year just for the experience, and he plans on fishing the tour next year as a pro.
“You can always catch some bass shallow on West Point, but you will really have to work for five shallow bites in a day in July,” Micah said.
In a big tournament that may be the way to go, but for club tournaments or fishing for fun, you can find more bass on summertime holes in deeper water.
After the spawn, bass work their way out to the main lake and main creek channels and set up where they can hold deep and still move shallow to feed. Points, roadbeds, humps and ledges all hold fish this time of year on West Point. You can often find large schools of bass on one small area when you find the right combination of structure and cover.
Micah keeps it fairly simple when fishing this time of year. Tied on his rods, he will have a big crankbait, a Buckeye Football Jig with a Fat Albert twin-tail grub, a Spot Remover jig head with a finesse worm, a Carolina-rig with a Baby Brush Hog or a big worm. He will also have a big spoon ready to cast to deeper cover. The water is usually clear in sum- mer, so most of his plastics will be in green pumpkin and brown colors, and he’ll use a summer-craw colored finesse worm if the water is extremely clear.
Micah likes the sexy-shad colored Strike King Series 5 or 6 crankbait and a similar color in the Norman DD22. He likes the smaller 4-inch size Sexy Spoon from Strike King.
All his baits are rigged on GLoomis rods and Ardent reels spooled with Seaguar Invizx fluorocarbon line in varying sizes.
The following 10 spots are between Half Moon Creek and Whitewater Creek. You can fish all of them without running all over the lake and burning up a lot of gas. Once you check out these spots and test Micah’s methods, you can find similar places that will hold bass all over the lake.
No. 1: N 33º 03.897 – W 85º 06.316 — The upstream point at the mouth of Half Moon Creek runs out and drops off sharply on the upstream side. There are stumps and rocks on this point as well as brushpiles. Micah says he can almost always catch a fish here. Position your boat on the deep, upstream side of the point, and cast to the more shallow water, working your bait down the drop. Fish all your baits here like that, from shallow to deep. Micah especially likes a Spot Remover jig head worked on the cover here since a lot of spots use this point.
Fish all the way around the point, staying out in deeper water and casting up on the point from all directions. Bass move out of Half Moon Creek and hold here and on the old pond dam in hole No. 2 below and will run up shallow to feed. Current moving across the point turns the fish on better.
No. 2: N 33º 03.717 – W 85º 06.330 — Start into Half Moon Creek, and you will find an old pond dam that crosses the creek. You will have to find it with a depthfinder; there is no real indication of it on either bank. When you find it, fish it with a Carolina- rigged Baby Brush Hog if there is no current, or throw a big worm if current is flowing across the dam.
Micah says there are brushpiles all over this dam, and anglers keep putting out more. Fish it from side to side, keeping your boat on the downstream side on one pass then going back across it on the upstream side if there is no current. If current is flowing, keep your boat on the downstream side of the dam and cast up on it so your bait will move with the current. A crankbait cast upstream and fished back with the cur- rent works well if you can get it down to the bottom. Micah says a Series 5 will get surprisingly deep, but he also uses a DD22N to bump bottom on the top of the dam. A Series 6 XD is sup- posed to run 20 feet deep, so it will get down there, too. Crankbaits work best when the water is moving because of generation at the dam.
No. 3: N 33º 03.504 – W 85º 07.499 – Run down past Highland Marina to the next big cove on your left. This is just downstream of the ramp at McGee Bridge Access. Out in the middle of the cove a roadbed runs straight to the river channel and drops off out on the end. The top of the roadbed near the end is about 14 feet down, and it drops off fast all around it.
Micah likes to fish the very end of the roadbed with a Carolina-rigged Baby Brush Hog, a big crankbait, a jig ’n pig or a jig-head worm. This is also a good place to throw the spoon. Keep your boat off the end of the roadbed, and cast up onto it and along the side of it. He will fish from the very end of the roadbed into the cove about as far as even with the dock on the far right bank. Work all the baits back from shallow to deep. With the spoon, you don’t need to make long casts. Let it fall to the bottom, keeping a tight line and watching for strikes. Then pop it off the bottom, and let if fall back. Hits will usually be on the fall, so keep a close watch on your line.
No. 4: N 33º 03.622 – W 85º 03.553 — Across the lake you will see a hump with four cypress trees on it. The old roadbed comes out here after crossing the river, and there is a big flat around the hump, offering an excellent feeding area. If you ride parallel to the hump, out about 100 feet from the cypress trees, you can see the old roadbed and another ridge that comes up and goes back down. A few weeks ago when we fished it, there was a log washed up on the end of the road toward the hump, marking the roadbed. Fish hold on both these spots.
Micah says many of the weekly night tournaments are won here, and there is a race to be the first boat on it. You should position your boat in the deeper water around the ridges and cast up onto them. There are rocks and brush to hold fish in sweet spots, but they will feed all along the ridges.
When the water was way down two years ago, Micah said he rode the area and saw some kind of metal on one of the ridges. You will get hung up a lot and lose baits, but it is worth it for the numbers of bass you can catch here. Try all your baits. You may have to go to lighter jigs and sinkers to decrease the number of hang-ups, but fish the whole area hard.
No. 5: N 33º 03.601 – W 85º 08.441 — The second big cove down- stream of the hump, on the same side of the river, has a boat ramp in it. A roadbed runs up the lake on this side and crosses out in the mouth of the cove, forming a ledge about 22 feet deep where it comes out of the deeper water. It is just inside the green channel marker out from the mouth of the cove.
Micah likes to fish all along this edge, working his football jig from the top of it down the drop. You will be working toward the island since the roadbed runs toward it. Both the foot- ball jig and a jig ’n pig would be Micah’s choices here for bigger large- mouths, but for numbers of fish, most- ly spots, he would throw a jig-head worm. If current is moving across this area, Micah will also throw a 6 XD crankbait and try to get it down to the bottom. More active fish will chase and eat the crankbait, and they are more active when the current is moving.
No. 6: N 33º 03.405 – W 85º 07.849 — Across the lake, just down- stream of the big, round point below the McGee Bridge roadbed, there is a red channel marker with a danger marker just inside it toward the bank. The danger marker marks the end of some kind of roadbed that runs off the bank here. You can see the narrow point of it as it enters the lake not far down- stream of the big round point.
This ridge and roadbed is covered with stumps and rocks, and fish hold on it and feed. Micah will fish all his baits across this ridge from all directions around it, but he expects to get most bites when the current is flowing across it by fishing with the current. Not only does sitting down current and casting up current make your bait move in a more natural direction, boat control is much easier when fishing from down- stream of the structure.
No. 7: N 33º 03.601 – W 85º 08.441 — Back across the lake there are two coves with a roadbed crossing them. On the bank just downstream of the two coves is a Boy Scout club- house. If facing into the coves, the roadbed comes off the far left bank near the clubhouse, crosses the first cove, runs up onto the point with a white pole on it, and then the roadbed crosses the bigger upstream cove. This is the same roadbed that runs on up to the next big cove in hole No. 5.
Micah likes to fish the end of the roadbed where it crosses the left-hand cove facing into the coves. You can still see where it comes off the bank on your left and, out near the middle point, it drops off where the old bridge used to be. There are rubble and rocks on the bottom. Circle the end of the roadbed, and cast up on the top of it. The top is about 12 feet down, so it is easy to hit with a crankbait. All the other baits work well here, too. Fish it from all directions as you go around it, fan casting across it.
No. 8: N 33º 02.853 – W 85º 08.596 — The last big cove on the left before the railroad trestle going down- stream has houses and docks in it. The cove splits, and the round point between the two arms holds bass all summer long. There is a good brushpile on the point, and bass moving out of the backs of the pockets hold on it. This point is deep enough to hold bass there all summer.
Ride around, find the brush and mark it, or fan cast the point from all directions to find it. You will pick up some fish feeding out from the brush, but most of them will be holding in brush. Hit the brush with a crankbait or one of your other baits to get bites here.
Although it is off the main lake, current does swirl around this point and affects the bass holding here. They will feed better when the current moves baitfish to them, so don’t hesitate to fish it when current is flowing.
No. 9: N 33º 03.209 – W 85º 09.543 — If you run straight down- stream, the river runs under the railroad on your left and Whitewater Creek turns off to your right. Straight ahead is a small pocket between the two, and the upstream point has a ridge or old roadbed coming off it. The ridge runs downstream across the mouth of the cove and has rocks and stumps on it. It is really rough, drops off fast on the front side, and bass hold and feed here.
Stay on the front side, cast up onto the ridge, and work your baits back. If current is hitting the ridge, work all the way around to the back and cast across it, coming up the slope and across the top of the ridge. When you hit a rock- pile or stump, make repeated casts to that sweet spot. Micah fishes his crankbait on 8- to 10-lb. test Seaguar Invizx. The lighter line will allow the crankbaits to run deeper, but it abrades easier. For the Carolina rig and jigs, Micah fishes 15-lb. line. He drops to 8- lb. test for his jig-head worms.
No. 10: N 33º 03.209 – W 85º 09.543 — Run into the mouth of Whitewater. Just past the narrow part, where it starts to open back up, there is a roadbed that runs all the way across it. On your left, near the point, a green buoy marker — TC WWC 2 — sits right where the road crosses the point. Micah says bass stack up on this junction of point and roadbed.
Fish all around the end of the roadbed and the point with all your baits. The jig-head worm will get numbers of fish, but the football jig will usually draw strikes from bigger fish, and it is easier to fish in deeper water. Drag it along like a Carolina rig with some shakes and short hops, but try to stay in contact with the bottom most of the time.
These 10 spots give an idea of the kinds of structure and cover Micah likes to fish from late June through the summer months. Check them out, and use what you learn to find similar spots all over the lake.
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