Joe Joslin Outdoors - Guide Service

Current Fishing Report for Toledo Bend Lake

Toledo Bend Reservoir Fishing Report
February 19, 2017

Hello, Anglers and outdoor addicts. Bass tournaments on our area lakes and rivers are in full swing as well as non tournament anglers showing up in significant numbers on local fisheries. Low fuel prices is a definite factor making it easier to afford gas in boats and tow vehicles.

A couple of the boat ramps I use includes the public SRA ramp on the Texas side of the dam just off Highway 255 as well as the SRA ramp in the back of Six Mile Creek just off Highway 87. These ramps are being heavily used the past couple of weeks and last Saturday morning I used the SRA ramp on Texas side of the dam. I’ve been using that ramp for 30 years or more and I’ve never seen it that busy. That’s good news if you have a business that depends on Toledo.

LAKE CONDITIONS: At midweek the lake level on Toledo is 169.03’ and no generating is scheduled at the dam plus all emergency spillway gates are closed. The water temperatures on the main lake is running 54-55 degrees and in protected coves as high as 58-59. North Toledo with lots of shallow, off colored water has temps in the low 60s. Mid lake is mostly clear and south Toledo is clear with stained conditions in the back portions of feeder creeks.


Anglers have lots of options currently as there are bass staging fairly deep from 12 to 17 feet as well as shallow from 2 to 10 feet. There are also numerous options as far as baits but jigs and crankbaits are catching most of the big fish. Other productive patterns include wacky rigs, Texas rigs, Carolina rigs and spinnerbaits. I continue to find more and more green hydrilla with some as deep as 12 feet.

On jigs, most are using football jigs with ½ and ¾ oz. being fairly common with colors in the natural tints such as green pumpkin, watermelon, w.m. red and watermelon candy or variations of these. For trailers on jigs, many are using creature baits and some anglers (this one included) will shorten the bait before adding it to the jig. I usually bite/cut about ¾ inch off the front of the bait.

Most of you know how I usually use a wacky rig. Check my website for a complete article on wacky rigging. I am using the Bottom Hopper (Berkley Havoc Series) more and more because of the feature of the floating tail allowing you to “Dead Stick” the worm and still you have the natural movement of the tail slowly rising.

My other favorite wacky rig soft plastics are 5 inch Senkos and magnum Trick Worms. On my Texas rigs I am using Bottom Hoppers, Boss Dogs (Havoc lizard), Power Worms (10 inch), Trick Worms and Senkos. Depending on the wind, my sinkers run from 1/8 to ¾ ozs and my fluorocarbon line on Texas and Carolina rigs is 15, 17 or 20 lb. test. We are catching some nice fish on Norton’s Deep Little N (DLN) and Berkley’s new Digger(medium diver) and Pit Bull (square bill) crankbaits. We caught our two best fish on the Pit Bull Saturday.

CRAPPIE/YELLOW BASS: Crappie guide, Jack Adams, says he is catching some crappie in the shallows with a cork and live shiner as well as a jig underneath a cork. Adams says they have been moving up to the shallows during a warm up and then will back off when a cold front hits and then when it warms they move shallow again.

Also, lake front owners on the south end have deep piers that they “brush”. Some have piers over 20 feet deep and they catch some beautiful slabs. Many have lighted piers and have some of their best catches after dark. Yellow bass are biting following cold fronts as they follow the large schools of shad that move deep to negate some of the high barometric pressure that follows a cold front. Tailspinners and jigging spoons are both excellent tools for catching yellows.

Joe Joslin is a syndicated writer and is published by numerous websites, newspapers and magazines plus is a pro guide on Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn and a TPWD licensed guide since 1998. Contact at, 337-463-3848/409-565-1288 and website


Joe Joslin Outdoors
Licensed Guide on Toledo Bend & Sam Rayburn
Tournament Angler & Outdoor Media
Member: Louisiana Outdoor Writers Assoc.& Southeastern Outdoor Press Assoc
160 Country Lane, DeRidder, LA 70634

Phone: (337) 463-3848