Jigging Deep Summer Brush

Shallow or deep, winter or summer, you can generally catch some solid bass out of brushpiles no matter where you go. For Lake of the Ozarks native and Elite Series Pro Casey Scanlon, brush comes into play all the time, and is a staple to his tournament fishing success. _DSC8603 copyNo matter where the Bassmaster tournament circuit brings him, he always relies on his Garmin scanning sonar to look for submerged brushpiles. “No matter what lake or time of the year, brush will always hold a few fish, but throughout the summer, you can catch large quantities of fish and some really nice quality as well,” said Scanlon. “When searching for brush, I will position my boat in 20 or 25 feet and scan 70-80 feet on each of the boat, marking each pile I see.”

During the summer, bass tend to move to points, humps, main-lake flats with creek channels nearby, and other pieces of offshore structure. This is where Scanlon will start his search. When he finds a brushpile that he would like to fish, he will position his boat away from the cover and throw to it from a distance. “Depending on the lake, the water clarity, and the season, the most effective brush will generally be at a certain depth throughout the lake and fish will stack up in those areas,” Scanlon noted. “One thing to remember, however, is that not all brush is created equal, and just because you catch fish at a few brushpiles 15 feet deep, doesn’t mean that every brushpile in that depth range will hold fish.” Depending on the type of tree, the timing, and many other factors, some brush just won’t be productive. That is why it is important to mark a lot of piles and hit as many as you can to determine which ones are best.

Fishing through this thick submerged cover is asking for snags, so it is important to pick a lure that can come through brush effectively. That is why Scanlon had been working with his sponsor Bass Kandi Baits on a newly available jig (pictured) which was made to be fished in a variety of situations. With a unique head design, this jig can come through brush and grass, as well as be skipped under docks. For the most part, he uses a 1/2oz jig, but will switch to a 3/4oz if he is fishing deeper brush. In the Ozarks, he likes to use natural colors such as brown and green, watermelon candy, or PB&J. If he is fishing dirtier water, he will throw a black and blue. On the back of these jigs, he will tip them off with a Bass Kandi Baits T-Craw or a Luck “E” Strike Ringmaster creature bait in a matching color. Scanlon noted that if the jig isn’t producing, he will switch to a 3/8 or 1/2oz Bass Kandi Baits Pro Series Shaky Head Jig with a big worm.

_DSC8538 copyWorking these jigs is simple, just cast it out into the brushpile, and crawl it through, trying to feel your way through the limbs. The fish will be suspended in the brush or be hanging out nearby. “When my jig clears the brush, I will aggressively hop it to try to trigger a bite,” said Scanlon. Because he is making long casts and fishing thick cover, Scanlon opts for heavier equipment. He prefers a 7’6 Heavy action Razr Rod, paired with 20lb Maxima Fluorocarbon spooled up on a high speed Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Signature Series casting reel.

When you find yourself struggling to catch fish on the lake this summer, remember to use your electronics to find submerged brushpiles and to use Scanlon’s tips. You will be sure to put more fish in the boat, and possibly even catch a giant while doing it. Good fishing, Casey Scanlon.

Flollow Casey on his Facebook page.


.themify_builder .text-18908-0-0-1.module-text { }