Newberg smallmouth, 8 September 2019


bass

Well-known member
I hit the Willie out of Newberg on Sunday the 8th. The forecast was for the second day of a cooling trend with rain in the forecast. I had a hard time sleeping the night before. Often these cooling trends in the fall are dynamite. I slept in a little and did not get to the river until about 6:40am. I had been concerned that there would be too much wind in the forecast for a morning topwater bite but the river was pleasantly calm and still. As I watched the river I was a little concerned that I did not see any fish breaking the surface, but that is not always necessary for a good topwater bite.

I rushed to get my kayak ready and made my way down the ramp. One bass boat had beaten me out that morning and I watched them take off upstream. I launched my kayak and headed down towards the bridge. There is some good water along that stretch. I started throwing my stick bait and almost immediately it was being attacked by small fish (baby bass or bluegill). I made may way down a short distance when I hooked up with a decent pound and a half largemouth. I picked the fish up and reached for my camera. Where is my camera ?! Wait, where is my PFD??

In my excitement to fish I had left my PFD in the truck. After a few choice words with myself I pedaled back to the ramp, tied up, and got my PFD. That was a first for me. I think the only left for me to forget now are my pants :)

I put on my PFD and raced back to where I had caught that largemouth. I was hoping there was a pile of them on that spot, but apparently he was a loner, or the other bass were laughing so hard at my stupidity that they could not bite. So I just continued down river. Every once in a while I would get a small hit but for the most part my stick bait was being ignored. I was kind of shocked, it looked so good dancing in the water. When I had finished dusting off a nice flat with it with only one dink smallmouth I decided it was time to put down the topwater.

I picked up a jerkbait and within a couple of casts I had a fish. I thought, "thats OK, this is a fun bait to fish". However, that was it for the jerkbait. So I picked up my Ned rig rod to teach them a lesson. I caught two quick SMALL-ies (emphasis on the small) and then that shut down. I decided that perhaps I was just fishing where there weren't fish and moved down to the area around the bridge.

This is another area with a lot of nice depth water and good current. Now, if I can't catch them here there is definitely something wrong. I fished the heck out of that area and only managed to scrape out a few more fish. The "big one" was maybe over a pound. I was suddenly hit with a wave of self-doubt. "I should have gone to George Rogers park", "I was stupid to come here and waste this weather", "Is there still time to leave and go somewhere else?" Every fisherman knows that feeling when you think you should be catching them and you don't

I decided it was too late to leave and so I sucked it up and decided to continue downstream. I picked up the Ned rig and decided that I would scrape out what I could and then never come back to this stupid place. I worked every little hump and point and continued to catch fish at a painfully slow pace, but I kept my nose to the grindstone. I had finally worked my way down past where I had fished when I was there earlier this spring. All my "good" spots were depleted with only about a dozen fish in what should have been the best 3 hours of fishing.

As I worked my way along I kept my eye on my depthfinder since this was new water to me. I remembered in looking at the Navionics web app that there was not much along this stretch but I was fishing every inch since what should have worked wasn't. I drifted down over a nothing stretch of bank and I saw that the bottom there went from about 28' up to 20' and then back down to about 28'. The make up looked almost like rip rap. I was also marking fish all over that thing. I put down the Ned rig and picked up my drop shot rod.

I dropped it straight down and lifted the rod. Stuck. I thought this is just par for the course today. Then the stuckness started to throb. Woohoo fish on!!



Nice pound plus smallmouth. I quickly released that fish and dropped back down. My bait hit the bottom. I lifted the rod and it was heavy again:



Maybe even a little nicer. I kept that up for a good two hours. The wind would come and go but I would find the spot drop down and catch a fish. I caught over 30 bass in about 2 hours off that little spot. By the end the bite had slowed a little and I would have to jiggle my drop shot around for a few minutes before getting bit but it was a fish on almost every drop for those two hours. The amazing thing was the size. Almost every fish was over a pound and some were close to two. On a light spinning rod that is a real battle! Just one more pic for fun!



I have to say nothing feels better than getting on a bunch of fish when all you have is despair in your heart. That day went from misery to elation. The interesting thing about that spot is that after going over it so many times my mental image is that it looks like a mini version of the finger jetties at Newport, just 20' down. Man what a blast.

By the time I decided to leave that spot the rain had just started to spit a little off and on. I decided I wanted to cover a bunch more water since the day was now officially a huge success and I wanted to learn as much as possible. Eventually I came across another rocky patch in 20' with deeper water around it. The fishing was not quite as good here as spot number one but it was close. I really had that pattern dialed in and I could have finished the day at spot number two, but my heart was light and I wanted to explore.

I worked pretty far down the bank when the rain started in earnest. I had found a bunch of decent spots on the way down (fishing quickly and watching my graph constantly). I fished on particular dock that had a bunch of largemouth and smallmouth on it. I was getting to the point of, "Oh, another 2lb smallmouth, isn't that nice". The dock was shallower and weedy and brushy and I switched to the swimbait to fish it.

Once that spot tired out I decided to quickly fish my way home with the swimbait. I was working a shallow flat that dropped into 20' of water when I felt that odd sensation that occurs when a bass eats the swim jig and keeps swimming along with it. I set the hook and whoa, this was a good fish. I worked it to the boat and it just kept diving under the yak. Each time that happened I held my breath expecting that the hook would pull out. Finally she tired out and I was able to grab her:



A nice fat 2lb 14oz smallie. I weighed her 4 times trying to get her to 3lbs but she was just shy :)

After that fish I mostly headed back, stopping to throw the swimbait here and there. They were eating it pretty good (like I thought the whole day should have gone) but I was ready to head home.

What a cathartic day, I went from the pits of despair to cloud nine. The bass played hide and seek with me for a good part of the morning but once I did find them it definitely turned into some of the best bass action I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing. I was close to giving up, but man am I glad I am stubborn.
 
Last edited:

EOBOY

Well-known member
Bass;

Another great report. Thursday it's going to be 80* the weatherman says. I just set my toon up with a 35lb. thrust elec. motor. Think I'll head over there and try it out.
 

bass

Well-known member
Thanks @EOBOY and @C_Run!

I have only fished for bass out of Newberg a few times in the past. This was my second all-day trip for bass there and I am still learning the area (really barely scratching the surface I think). May have just been a technique problem by me but the big structures that I was drooling over on the Navionics webapp were more or less a bust, but the small hidden gems were amazing.

I fished downstream this trip but I think upstream looks even more promising. I have done well on the back side of the island in the spring pre-spawn and I am sure it holds fish all summer. Upstream from Ash Island there is a lot of good looking structure (that is a long pedal). I will definitely spend more time at Newberg now that the PB crowd should be thinning out.
 

AlabamaCoe

New member
Bass;

Another great report. Thursday it's going to be 80* the weatherman says. I just set my toon up with a 35lb. thrust elec. motor. Think I'll head over there and try it out.
That's not far from me here in mcminnville, to bad I dont have a boat lol
 

bass

Well-known member
You should give the Yamhill at Lafayette Locks a try. There is also fishable water at Dayton landing County park. Those are both nearby and you could hit both on the same day. Also Roger's landing in Newberg has a fishable shoreline and is not too far. There is a big shallow flat at the old boat ramp (not the new one, where you see the dirt path heading down near the entrance). That is a snaggy spot since it is very shallow and rocky but I am sure a wacky-rigged senko will produce some fish there.

I will also add that getting some watercraft makes a huge difference in being able to access tons of water. It does not need to be fancy or expensive. Any floating craft helps. My first "boat" was a $20 two-man raft that I added a plywood floor to. I built my second boat myself out of plywood. This time of year you can probably find a good deal on a new or used kayak. Does not need to be fancy, just something to expand your horizons.
 

AlabamaCoe

New member
You should give the Yamhill at Lafayette Locks a try. There is also fishable water at Dayton landing County park. Those are both nearby and you could hit both on the same day. Also Roger's landing in Newberg has a fishable shoreline and is not too far. There is a big shallow flat at the old boat ramp (not the new one, where you see the dirt path heading down near the entrance). That is a snaggy spot since it is very shallow and rocky but I am sure a wacky-rigged senko will produce some fish there.

I will also add that getting some watercraft makes a huge difference in being able to access tons of water. It does not need to be fancy or expensive. Any floating craft helps. My first "boat" was a $20 two-man raft that I added a plywood floor to. I built my second boat myself out of plywood. This time of year you can probably find a good deal on a new or used kayak. Does not need to be fancy, just something to expand your horizons.
This was very helpful thank you! I will be checking these spots out. It is that time of the year to find a kayak for cheap I have had my eyes open trying to find one that would work for me! I've been trying a few parks here and there that have lakes some produce some dont. It's a hit and miss but either way a good day for me is just wetting a line! The bonus is getting on the bass lol
 

bass

Well-known member
Glad I could help! Good luck with the kayak search. I will say that I fished out of that raft for about 2 years, It was a pretty good bass fishing platform. That was back in NC fishing a bunch of small, nameless flood controls lakes. A kayak is definitely better out this way. Out of curiosity I looked online and Dick's has some stuff on sale now. Not sure what you are looking for.

Also, there is a kayak fishing website (northwestkayakanglers.com) where folks sometimes sell their kayaks. That might be a place to look as well.
 

AlabamaCoe

New member
Glad I could help! Good luck with the kayak search. I will say that I fished out of that raft for about 2 years, It was a pretty good bass fishing platform. That was back in NC fishing a bunch of small, nameless flood controls lakes. A kayak is definitely better out this way. Out of curiosity I looked online and Dick's has some stuff on sale now. Not sure what you are looking for.

Also, there is a kayak fishing website (northwestkayakanglers.com) where folks sometimes sell their kayaks. That might be a place to look as well.
I'm just keeping and open eye! Yeah I did a raft with a hard rubber bottom. Back in Alabama lol. Got a nice one today ended the day with 7
 

AlabamaCoe

New member
Those are some nice fatties!
Indeed, got one at hagg and one in willamina. Both using shadow rap shad 11, 2 - 4 ft slow sinking blue ghost shad jerkbait. I've had alot of success here since moving out here with it. I only know of a few places but I'm constantly trying to find new ones. But I have caught large and smallmouth on that jerkbait and the occasional feisty trout. Also picked up some new craws the other day the color is unbelievable lol I plan on trying them soon.
 

Attachments


Top